Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Banking On It

We dropped into the Napoleon Street branch of BankWest this afternoon, to cash some travellers cheques, and were very pleasantly surprised. Back home, you stand in a queue to talk to one of a number of tellers through a glass screen - just in case you wanted to hold them up at gunpoint. (Apparently that's the norm here, too.) But this branch is trying an experiment. It is quite open, just a few staff sat behind low desks, no protective screens in sight (the money is very secure, so there's no need really), and a seating area of comfy leather sofas for customers who might need to wait. Plus very friendly staff.

The idea is that this sort of approach, as an alternative to what we have become used to, might be a draw for customers. We've no idea how they compare with the other banks out here financially at all, but walking out we agreed that if we come back we'd be inclined to open our account there simply on the basis of such an enjoyable experience. (In fact, the teller had informed us that they charged for cashing travellers cheques and that one of the other banks would do it for us for free; but we thought the charge - very small, as it turned out - was well worth the service, and didn't begrudge it in the slightest.)

4 comments:

  1. Brian4:36 am

    You never visited the Yorkshire Building Society on Pinstone Street then - that's very similar!

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  2. You're right - I didn't. But Napoleon Street is much nicer than Pinstone Street (even allowing for the work being done on Pinstone Street).

    It blesses us that you look in on us : ) Lots of love to you all!

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  3. meant to tell you a small group of us get together for breakfast ion the last Wed of each month to throw around questions of mission etc and to support each other on the journey.

    Its on again tomorro - 7.30am at Kailis Bros cafe in Oxford St leederville, just towards the train line from where we met up.

    Its prob too late now for you to get this, but I'll put you in the loop for next time!

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  4. Hi Hamo - would love to join you, but had an early night last night and so didn't get your message until 7:00am this morning - not enough time to get out and over to Leederville by train (and back again to meet someone in Cottesloe at 9:30)...so I guess I'll have to wait a month.
    We're noting that breakfast meetings are popular over here!

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