BPI Express Remittance Corp, Nevada aka: Lucky Money Inc.
One of the great things about having a blog is I can sometimes vent frustration on bad service.
This is the first time I have used the blog for this reason but I am sure you will understand my frustration as I promised the manager I would expose this story to many people.
Recently my wife’s family house was completely destroyed.
I was in a situation where I had to send money overseas to assist them asap.
As my wife’s family lives in the Philippines I decided to use a Filipino remittance company thinking it would be faster than a traditional bank wire.
I called Lucky Money Inc at 3890 S Maryland Parkway as they specialized in sending money to the Philippines. They told me that I had to take in cash for immediate wire.
I went to my bank and transferred cash from a holding company to my personal account.
I was told by Lucky Money the funds had to come from a personal account and this is why I made the transfer.
I took along the registrar showing myself as the managing member of the holding company and followed the instructions exactly as given.
My immediate impression of the remittance office was – I was shocked by the overall lack of any form of security. I was carrying a large sum of cash and I did not see a single camera or any form of protection. Cash seemed to be just placed into drawers.
I completed the paperwork put in front of me giving all my personal information with bank statements showing source of funds including the bank statements showing the transfer of funds from the holding company to my personal account. I also showed the registrar for my holding company – listing the officers. The staff photocopied everything. This process took an hour.
The remittance office then asked for the bank statement that showed my holding company name and a bank stamp. I called my bank manager and he faxed the information. I waited another hour while I was told the compliance department in San Francisco reviewing the file. I encouraged them to call the bank and speak to the banker but they said they don’t do such a thing even though it was such a basic step.
After 2.5 hours a Mrs Ly (with a Vietnamese accent) told me that because the funds originated from a company I could not send the funds. I told her that I had shown proof that I was the managing member of the company and had shown the transfer to my personal account. She said “we don’t have a policy for this and cannot do it”. Reasoning with her had no effect. She really was difficult to communicate with, partly due to her limited command of English, and that may have been a contributing factor.
I thought many banks lacked personal empowerment till I dealt with this company. The company management lacked any level of reasonableness to understand a simple transaction. I could not fit into their box and so I was essentially dismissed after wasting several hours of my time. Ms Ly told me all their customers take money from personal accounts and I did not fit the policy of how they operate.
Astonished – I told her it is obvious why her company will never cater to clients with any level of sophistication and told her that I would follow up with an email that I would post online.
My opinion is that BPI Express is not a place to go with any large sum of cash for security reasons alone and if you have anything that the staff decides is outside their seemingly limited scope of understanding then they will not have the ability to accomplish the required transaction. The assistant manager was embarrassed and apologized. She tried but it seems a Ms Ly called the shots and despite having all my paperwork in order she just did not seem to have the basic understanding to perform the transaction.
It is incomprehensible to me how this company stays in business.
I strongly suggest to NOT use this company if you are looking for any level of service and basic understanding of international banking and proof of funds laws.
This place was a complete exercise in frustration.