— Citizenship Lawyer (@ExpatriationLaw) March 20, 2016
The above tweet references a fascinating conversation on Reddit.
The conversation begins with:
Hey all, just got back from the Bank of China because I wanted to open an account to hopefully find some easier method of transferring money back home to the States (an entirely different fiasco for another time), but after the bank teller floundering around with his supervisor for a good hour and a half, they finally told me I couldn’t get a card today and would have to try again some other time, which they would call me and let me know. How nice of them.
This is already the second time I’ve tried to go and been turned away. The first time they told me I needed proof that I was actually employed in China (to which apparently my valid residence permit was not enough), and so in true Chinese fashion, I had my school simply write down on a piece of paper that I worked there and then stamp it. Good enough.
Anyway, they told me that today I couldn’t open up an account because their system is “complicated” and there are a number of other people with “similar names to mine” and their system is too slow to process it today. This is of course just a string of nonsense and I don’t see how it’s any form of excuse whatsoever. My buddy opened his account no problem, so I can’t decipher why my situation might be any different. Unless of course it’s because he’s Australian and I’m American, which is the only difference. On the forms you have to fill out, there’s a simple question that says to check if you’re American or not American, and I think this is what may have flagged my account. With everything going on in Beijing and tightening controls on VPNs at the moment, I can’t but help to think this is the reasoning behind the vague excuse. Anyone else experiencing similar problems?
TL;DR: went to Bank of China, couldn’t open an account right now, and I think it’s because I’m American.