Ask a Mexican

How do you like the service offered by banks in Mexico?

We all complain about the banks. 22 years ago the banks were crappy because they were all Mexican owned and were run by pals of whoever was in office, regardless whether they even had any knowledge of the banking industry.

 But NAFTA changed that. One provision in NAFTA mandated that the banks be opened up to foreign ownership. Sure enough, within two decades almost every one of them has been bought by foreign interests, mostly American.

So, are they any better? No. They still give crappy service, they’re understaffed, and far too many times there is pretty good evidence of an inside job when money goes missing from someone’s account. Yes, that happens. With impunity. There is very little recourse.

We don’t even allow our boss to step inside a bank because she goes berserk and we’re afraid the bank guards are going to take her for an insane bank robber and shoot her dead. Or she will grab their gun and start blazing away. We have our driver do her banking. He has a lot more patience. So she wanted us to ask the question how the locals like the service offered by banks in Mexico?


1.Angel Sandoval, 36, cable installer.

On a scale from one to ten, I would give all of them a solid 5, some of them are good, in Banamex for example, there is always a lady at the entrance asking you what you’re doing so she tells you what to do or where to go, but in Santander it’s a huge mess, there are always huge lines and the clerks seem to be always too busy to help you.


2.Laura Hernandez, 56, accountant.

Banks here are not Mexican anymore, they should keep their international standard of service, but it’s always bad. There is no grade I could give because they are all different, but most of them have rude clerks who hate their jobs, and only play nice when showed dollars, and they take a whole hour for lunch. Back when I was a clerk, there were times where we didn’t even drink water during our shift. That is the problem with foreign companies here, they set their international standards and Mexicans use what has always worked for them without raising their service to the standard.


3.Jose Padilla, 38, maintenance worker.

Luckily, I only have the bank account that my company set up for me, and it’s not that bad. On quincena (payday) there are massive lines, so you must be smart enough to make your paycheck last until a day or two after everyone got theirs, so you can go to the bank freely and not stand there for hours on end. I would say the better client you are the better they treat you.


4.Oscar Delgado, 23, gardener.

Banks are insane awful here, I hate it when I have been standing there to deposit and some guy with more money or a premium account comes by. They help him first and leave me there hanging. Also, why are there no chairs in any bank for waiting? It sucks to wait and on top of that be standing. Not to mention, the ladies just decide to walk away and take hours to come back, I guess it’s their lunch break.


5. Marta Cordova, 62, retired.

I hate going to the bank as much as the next gal, but they are not as bad now as they used to be. Back when we only had a couple of banks and they were run by Mexicans, things were so shady and slow. Money couldn’t be taken out as fast as it is now, despite the long lines, and there were only one or two people working, now there are like 6 clerks and 4 people in desks.


6.Daniela Ruiz, 19, receptionist.

I think it depends on the experience, I’ve had some good people help me out, very nice and they explain everything, I just started using banks recently, but my mom has had very rude people “helping her” and she gets really frustrated and angry. ,