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Trouble paying Dublin Bikes

  • 05-04-2022 7:59pm
    Registered Users Posts: 5,301 ✭✭✭

    Is anyone here having trouble paying for surcharges with Dublin Bikes?

    I am engaged in an endless loop of Kafkaesque proportions over the remittance of €0.54!

    First things first. I LOVE Dublin Bikes. It is, IMHO, the single biggest improvement in quality of life for us inner city dwellers that I can recall. I willingly pay my annual subscription; the majority of my trips take less than 30min and so are covered by the annual retainer and I absolutely understand and accept that bikes taken out for a longer period than that incur a surcharge. Up until now I have never had any problem with these charges being paid. They simply come out of my bank account. All tickety boo and hunky dory.

    A month ago I spent a little longer than usual on my Sunday Cycle and fully expected to get surcharged, which I did to the massive sum of €0.50 (+ VAT of €0.04). I got an email to say that the payment had been rejected, which I put down to a temporary cash flow glitch which would soon be sorted. It was, but despite that, subsequent attempts to deduct the amount automatically have also been rejected.

    Trying to get hold of a human voice at the end of the Dublin Bikes hot line is like waiting to win the Lottery. It just doesn't happen.

    One is invited to leave a voice mail so that someone will call one back. One does. Someone doesn't.

    One sends an irate mail through the website. One gets an automatic reply that merely repeats the substance of one's original e-mail.

    Finally, just before closing time several days later one manages to get through to a human who blames it all on one's bank. "Well, can I pay you now, over the phone?" "Oh no. We can't do that. GDPR, don't ye know"

    So one calls one's bank. They say one should delete one's credit card details from the Dublin bikes website and re-enter them. One does. Payment is again rejected.

    Another irate call to the bank. They say it's "bank policy" to refuse automatic payments of such a small amount and that despite my explicit verbal authorisation and willingness to do whatever it takes to prove my identity they cannot possibly amend the system to allow such a payment. I should call Dublin Bikes, get their account and IBAN numbers and pay it that way.

    FOR 54 F***ING CENTS!!!!!!!

    I realise this is mainly my bank's fault, and they don't give a rat's ass because they are leaving the country in a few months anyway. Dublin Bikes claims they are getting a few irate calls from that bank's customers with similar issues. However, an organisation that is totally inflexible about how it receives payments to the point where it locks out of its service loyal customers who are only too willing to pay for what they have used must be partly to blame as well.

    Am I alone among boards users in this experience?


  • Registered Users Posts: 10,397 ✭✭✭✭28064212

    DublinBikes allows payment via credit card or direct debit, have you tried the latter? Your bank might allow direct debits of low amounts.

    Alternatively, you could sign up to an e-bank like N26 or Revolut, both of which have free options

    Boardsie Enhancement Suite - a browser extension to make using post-migration Boards on desktop a better experience (includes full-width display, keyboard shortcuts, and a dark mode setting)

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,301 ✭✭✭Snickers Man

    I have been paying for the service by direct debit for years.

    The telephone operative I spoke to specifically refused to accept an on the spot payment for the surcharge via my debit card, saying "We can't do it for GDPR reasons".

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,397 ✭✭✭✭28064212

    Then set your account to pay by card instead? On the DublinBikes website, you can set your payment method to card or IBAN. Which ever you're not currently using, try the other

    Boardsie Enhancement Suite - a browser extension to make using post-migration Boards on desktop a better experience (includes full-width display, keyboard shortcuts, and a dark mode setting)

  • Registered Users Posts: 674 ✭✭✭wheelo01

    I'm not fully Au fait with this set up, but could you not put, say €10 onto your account as a credit for future surcharges, or it would be there for next years subscription?

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,301 ✭✭✭Snickers Man

    After much palaver, got it sorted. I blame my bank mainly but I'll be leaving them soon (well, actually they're leaving me because they're quitting the country) but I still think DB could have been a bit more flexible a bit earlier. Still, what are help lines for if not to sort out manually what the geeks can't possible seem to be able to guarantee automatically?

    Franz Kafka is alive and well and fecking things up in Dublin City.

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