Actionable insights on equities, fixed-income, macros and personal finance Start 14-Days Free Trial
Actionable investing insights Get Free Trial

ICICI Bank Experiences

Arjun Prabhu’s post on bad experiences with ICICI Bank seems to have resulted in a barrage of opinions, flames and “me-too” comments on ICICI Bank’s apparently glaring lack of customer service fundamentals. There are 242 comments as of now, and this post is #1 on a google search on “ICICI Bank experience“.

I’m not surprised. In their quest to become the top bank in India, organic growth is potentially fraught with over promising and under delivering. Complaints in that post range from NRI money transfer hold ups to Indian customer accounts tacked with arbitrary fees and refused refunds. The modus-operandi seems to be “Confuse your customer”.

A customer center service answered by uninformed, clueless agents.

Tough posturing on money they expect to receive: Thugs to repossess vehicles, threatening letters without supporting documents, requesting money before raising bills.

Raising up their hands when they screw up. They seem to do that with endless procrastination, playing the blame game and passing the buck. This is ridiculous but of course, works for them like a charm.

This is not “Hum hain na”.

This is “Hum Hain?” “Na.”

Note: To those that have complained:

  1. Always make your complaint in writing. Lots of people write on this blog, and call up etc. but that is no way to register a complaint. Write in, FAX it and get an acknowledgement.
  2. Never sign unfilled forms; Someone complained that an agent had ticked a “Premium” account instead of the account they needed, but admitted to having signed a blank form.
  3. Loan complaints and others: visit the Banking Ombudsman site to register a complaint if you think the bank is being unfair.
  4. Don’t complain that you are “forced to have an ICICI account” because your company remits salary there. Jeez. You can get another bank account, and transfer money using a cheque every month. Nobody forces you to use the bank’s other services, for heaven’s sake.
  5. Stay away from oral promises and get EVERYTHING in a written form before you sign anything.

My personal experience: I opened a “three in one” account with ICICI bank four years ago, paying Rs. 750. A year later, I had not used either of the three – Savings, Demat or Trading accounts – and therefore, after a year, asked them to shut down the account (written and oral). They asked me to pay another year’s fees instead; which I promptly refused. They’ve been sending me bills ever since, and I’ve relegated them to the waste paper basket. One day they’ll come for me, I guess – and you’ll see a big blog post that day.

  • Ashish says:

    >Well, here what the bank is projected as:

    “ICICI Bank wins three awards for outstanding performance from Asian Banker
    * Best Retail Bank India
    * Excellence in Multi Channel Distribution
    * Excellence in Automobile Lending Award

    Reader’s Digest India – Most Trusted Brand Award for 2006 voted by consumers”

    They are the worst bank in the private sector in India. My docs were recently misplaced by the bank, and they are threatning to close the account if I do not give another copy!!

  • Anush says:

    >You can use Citibank account. They have good services like efficient internet banking facility, friendly customer care and very good ATM network.

  • suresh says:

    >In the last 3 years, I thought of using ICICI services for
    1. Housing loan
    2. online trading
    3. NRE savings account

    Everytime, I googled for reviews on ICICI and end up on arjun’s page. Can you believe that. everytime I ended up going to a other bank/vendor. talk about power of internet.

    I use only their money2india services. Infact, I’m being forced to do that. My bank HDFC has a crappy portal and non-responsive customer support (though good exchange rates). I had problem with ICICI only once and they resolved quickly. With HDFC, I have problems atleast twice in just 4 months.

    Everytime I remit using ICICI, I literally pray till I get money in my indian account 🙂

    I’m still searching for a alternative provider but no luck yet.

    BTW, love your blog.