Hi! It is so frustrating to have to push button after button to try to talk to a human being. In general for all of these automated systems, sometimes just pushing 0 (zero) over and over again will get you to a human. Other times, I say the word “Agent” or “Representative” or “Help” or a combination of those repeatedly (doing so in a louder and louder and more irritated voice, I am ashamed to say!)
For banks, your best bet is to use a bank that has a branch in your town and get to know a banker or two there. In my town I bank at SRP Credit Union, Wells Fargo, First Citizens, and TDBank. When I call any of those local offices, a real person answers right away. If they can’t help me, I ask to talk to the banker I know.
For credit card companies, USAA and CapitalOne let you get to a person very quickly after just one or two button pushes, especially if the phone number you are calling from is in your account and recognized when you call. I am not sure about other companies.
Good luck to you on this! The lack of control I demonstrate in the rude way I shout into the automated phone system embarrasses me – I’d NEVER talk to a real human like that, but the those systems are maddening. Also, I feel as if I have a very clear, unaccented, highly understandable voice, and I elucidate my words very clearly – I’m a teacher! – so why the systems can’t tell the difference between my very crisp “YES” and my very sharp “NO” completely eludes me!
Hang in there!
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