OMG! An inconvience fee for both paper bills AND online bill payment??

Back in the glory days, way way back, when we only had hard wired phones, we only had paper bills. And once received we paid them by putting the check in envelope and send them to our banks. And did we pay for paper bills? No, we didn’t. And did we have to pay for getting them paid? Nope, well ok, just barely. Well, much have changed since then.

Because now you are forced to online bills. Because your suppliers themselves can save so much by discarding paper invoices. And if you still wish to receive one, you now suddenly have to pay for it. Big time! As if you are the cause that a paper bill suddenly has become a pain in the proverbial bottoms and you have to pay for the inconvenience of having them send a paper bill to you.

If this strikes you as a bit strange, you have to hold on to your seat. Because it doesn’t stop at your suppliers forcing you to check in at dozens of different online portals and forcing you to pay a penalty for paper bills. The current trend is that companies are introducing an inconvenience fee for certain payment methods you are allowed (by these very companies) to pay your bill online.

Take this case for example. John Green is both a board member and a customer of the Big Bear City Community Services District. He didn’t expect an extra fee when he paid his water bill using the CSD online bill payment option. He brought the matter up before the board.

CSD General Manager Rob Hopkins explained the reason behind the fee, which stands at $2.95 for credit card or debit payment. The fee is a pass-through cost that is charged by the credit card collection service company. Hopkins explained other options would be for the CSD to subsidize the cost at an estimated $2,500 a year or fold in credit card convenience billing costs to the base rate so that the fee is paid among all rate payers. With about 3 percent of customers paying by credit or debit card, Hopkins recommended the CSD keep the charge as a true convenience fee for the individual.

So, what’s wrong with that? What is your point? Ok. Take a deep breath and take time to zoom out and reflect. Not only are companies  forcing people to chuckle in inconvenient online bills, but also into inconvenient e-payment methods. Why, because it is convenient to these companies. So my point is that these companies are forgetting how important their customers are to them, only for the sake of a bit of cost savings. Just ask yourselves as a company, how important are customer loyalty and customer retention to you? Got it? Thought so!


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1 Comment


  1. Haha. And a wonderful exampel of just how stupid and wrong for example roaming fees are.