Monday, January 30, 2017

The Great Credit Card Gamble

AXA insures foreign tourists but has grown fond of American insurer tactics which means it has a number of reasons for not paying me.

It took months, many phone calls, and repeat faxes to collect for previous visits, so I lost patience. After accepting a recent call and copying all the information, I told the dispatcher I’d arrive at the guest’s hotel in an hour. Then I threw the dice. I asked for AXA’s credit card.

 “We don’t have a credit card,” he said.

“Yes you do,” I said. All carriers have credit card, but they vary in willingness to give out the number.

“Let me talk to my supervisor.”  There followed a wait of several minutes before he returned.

“We’ll e-mail a guarantee of payment.”

That’s a legalistic statement describing what the carrier covers and how much it will pay. It doesn’t guarantee anything.

“Go ahead,” I said. “But I still need the card number.”

There followed another long wait.

“I’m afraid we’re unable to supply a credit card.”

I wished him good luck in finding a doctor. Since that 2009 dialogue, AXA calls once or twice a year and we have the same exchange.

I should add that I send bills to many agencies that pay reliably. When they don’t, I ask for a credit card. Some carriers agree, but it’s risky. 

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