My son Jamie is on his gap year and has been working as a barman for an events company at Test Matches, Olympia exhibitions, etc. This is casual employment but offering in practice quite a lot of hours per week on average, just concentrated in heavy bursts.
Jamie was planning to finish shortly and to set off on a cheap hostel holiday around Eastern Europe. Unfortunately, the wages for one of the events at which he had worked did not come through in the expected week, This resulted in him slipping over – by less than ’50 – his ‘250 overdraft limit.
That does not sound like a disaster. But he had been booking his hostels online with his debit card, putting down the tiny deposits required.
8 deposits came in total to only a bit over ’30. But the Halifax allowed each transaction on the card, and then charged him ’30 penalty per transaction. That is a fine of ‘240 on ’34 worth of payments. As a result he has to cancel his holiday, as I have no cash either.
He spoke today to the Halifax, who said this was an “Adminstration charge”. But, as the payments went through normally, where precisely is the extra administration cost? The Halifax also said that pending the resolution of the current High Court case on the legality of such charges, they are not prepared to consider the case.
This is appalling. ‘240 of charges on ’34 of expenditure is plainly disproportionate. I was walking past a bank in Shepherd’s Bush yesterday and saw that a vandal had cracked one of the windows, which was being replaced. I tut-tutted with disapproval at the stupid violence. This morning if I see the vandal who did it, I will shake his hand.