I have just spent the last 3 hours trying to update my student oyster card. Was I successful? Ha! This is London.
I first tried to update my card online. I cant remember exactly what happened last year, but I'm sure I applied for the card through the Student Union. However, the student union website has been updated. Oh how I cringe. Instead of being the 'useful' website it once was (?) it has now turned into a facebook wannabe. "Come be my friend, I'm hip" it screams out to say. I dont particularly want to be hip nor be your friend, I just want to update my oyster card. However, this useful part of the website has been overtaken by "upload your party photos here". I think I'll pass.
Next up is the obvious TFL website. However, they wont let me log in due to their 'system maintenance' and I had to change my password twice before they opened the doors and let me in. However, when they did, they said that my oyster card doesnt exist. I can assure you, it does. Its in my hand. Its only a new one. I bought it from you about 4 months ago after my other one went walkabouts. Ok, try plan C. I click on the 'updating/renewing 18+ student oyster cards" link. It takes a year to load and then it tells me I can update my card easily online or at my local tube station. I tried my local tube station yesterday and the moody guard looked at me as though I was a green alien and told me I have to do it online. But, of course, there's no link, so how can I do it online? I scan the website for ages before banging my head against the wall and trying plan D - phoning them.
I listen to all their pre-recorded advice about how I can text them to gain help, how I can do most things via their website...etc... Sorry to sound like my dad, but...can I speak to a human? For one a text message wont solve my problem. For another, your website is crap. Well, I listened to classical music for about 40mins (whilst looking at kanji cards. multitasking!^^) before getting bored and asking them to call me back. I wont hold my breath.
I go back online to try again. nothing. I send them an email, but again, I wont hold my breath for a productive reply anytime soon.
Ok I thought, frustrated. Plan E. If I cant renew, I'll just buy another one. Its only £5 and it might destroy all the hassle. But, ha! Not so easy as that. Cos, I cant buy one online anymore. Not at the oh-so-hip student union website. Not at the university website. Not on the TFL website. Or at least, theres no link and the University's link has expired. Joy. My University is a participating University, so I shouldnt have to go via the paperform. And anyway, why should I have to buy another photocard?! Isnt that a waste of both mine and their time, money, energy, resources, plastic... My oyster card is new. All they have to do is update it. Say that I am a continuing student.
How hard should this be?
I feel like I want to kill someone.
(bad day alert)