/ Shopping, Technology

Tesco – I can call, I can write, so why can’t I email you?

Does anyone else hate it when a company insists you contact them by letter or phone, rather than email? If you do, then my search for an email address to contact Tesco Credit Cards may cause extreme distress.

So I had a small problem with my Tesco credit card, and I needed to get in touch with them to sort it out.

Working for Which?, I know it’s usually easier to get things in writing in case you need to refer to your discussions at a later date. So, I went to the contact page of their website to find an email address.

I was surprised to find there wasn’t one – not even a contact form – just a postal address and a phone number. This struck me as odd – I applied for the card online and I manage my account online, so why can’t I contact Tesco online? A bit of digging found their Twitter account, so I tweeted asking for an email address.

Their answer? They couldn’t give me an email address for ‘data protection reasons’.

Am I getting too personal?

I was completely nonplussed. For a start, I see no reason why sending them an email would be a breach of data protection. Is their email address extremely personal to them? Should it not be in the public domain?

Furthermore, I was horrified that even though I could apply for a credit card, pay the balance and change my direct debit details online, I couldn’t drop them a quick email to ask them to fix a simple problem.

I got in touch with Tesco, and here’s what their spokesperson had to say:

‘At present, credit card customers can’t contact us by email. We ask customers to contact us by phone or in writing as this allows us to confirm their identity by asking them to provide their unique security credentials or signature.’

I’m afraid that, to me, that’s just not good enough. I spoke to someone at the Office of Fair Trading who pointed me to the European e-commerce regulations which state that a company selling goods and services online must provide an email address. This, apparently, includes companies who sell financial products, such as credit cards.

No, I don’t want your phone number

I also spoke to our in-house lawyer, Chris Warner, and here’s what he had to say:

‘If a website provides or enables you to purchase a service, the e-commerce regulations mean an email address must be provided. As you can apply for a Tesco Credit Card online, and you’ll be told straight away if your application has been successful, I think Tesco needs to include a contact email on its site.’

We’ve been in touch with Tesco on this matter, and I’m hoping that very soon we’ll see a handy email address displayed prominently on their contact page. Customers should be able to get in touch with them quickly and efficiently – without having to rack up a phone bill or faff around at the post office.

But, in the meantime, I’d like to know whether you’ve also struggled to track down a company’s email address.

When I raged about this in the office, Which? Convo editor Hannah Jolliffe pointed out that she’d spent a long time trying to find an email address for McAfee – they did have one, but it was buried deep in their website in a way that suggests they’d rather not receive any emails. Have you had similar frustrations?

howard says:
3 March 2018

I want to send Tesco bank car insurance personal motoring details but cannot find a postal address,can anyone help

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I’m having the same problem with Yale. After buying their burglar alarm “SR 330 plus”, I selected the locations that I was putting the attachments and tested that they were communicating with the hub as per their instructions and started fixed them to the positions that I selected but I came to install the siren it started going off because of the tamper switch, this 100 decibel sound went on for 10 minutes as I was trying to turn it off I disconnected it from the the home hub (it states somewhere that you only have 3 hours to fit it). I’ve contacted their helpline twice, 15 minute wait each time. The first time they sent me an email saying that they would contact me, as I was afraid of picking the siren up and it going off again. The response from Yale was that I should disable it on the smart app but I can’t as I’ve removed it from the app. The second time the lady at the call centre told me that they weren’t in the same building but that she would email them to get in touch with me urgently, needless to say the siren is still sitting on our front room table. I’ve since been on Trust Pilot and almost every comment says the same, that they never respond. I don’t think Which should be recommending any of their products and should put their lack of customer service in as a warning to other people who are thinking of buying anything from them.
Best regards

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Trevor Davies says:
24 April 2018

I have recently been in debt with VIRGIN media. As you can imagine this entailed a lot of communication.
Because I don’t like telephone conversations, in business calls, mainly due to misunderstandings, mishearing, and on my part no record of what was said. Although they stated on their Website that a email address did exist, I could not find one.And this was supported by other correspondents. I therefore had to compose letters and post them. I trust this may help any efforts you make to stop this practise.
Regards; Trevor Davies

[Sorry, your comment has been edited to align with our community guidelines. We kindly ask that you do not share your, or anyone else’s, personal details. https://conversation.which.co.uk/commenting-guidelines/. Thanks, mods.]

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