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Customer Service in Spain

Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 12:51am
25 replies1495 views6 members subscribed
dinnerout

dinnerout

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I see quite a few posts about this issue whether it be banks, Post Offices, Town Halls etc etc. 

It occurred to me quite a long time ago that you need a completely different mindset/approach when getting stuff done in Spain. When you learn this life becomes a lot easier, and I'm being serious.

You are not a customer you are an interruption. Do not be angry about this, it's just how it is. Accept it and you will find things go more smoothly.

It's important to assume that the bank/shop/service provider is doing you a favour by allowing you to use the service. Get over it. 

Once you understand these unwritten rules you can start to play the game and make it work in your favour. You shouldn't have to, but if you want everything to be happy all the time the game soon becomes second nature and effortless.

So as an example for beginners, if you walk into a shop or office and ask if they speak English they will say no. They do speak English but you asked them to so that's not going to work. Rule 1 is to apologise in Spanish for your lack of Spanish.

Once you do this they will speak to you in English. 

Another example. In England you wouldn't walk into a bank and say to the cashier "Good day. How are you? Wow it's hot today" before addressing your business.

Here in Spain you will achieve things more easily if you adopt this type of approach. It won't always work. But most attempts at getting it to work are taking you a step away from the person assuming you are a pushy rude foreigner. And if you're perceived to be a pushy rude foreigner you know how that works dont you?!

Computer he say no......

My advice is don't blame a different country for being different. Embrace it and learn how to make it work for you.

Bryan995

Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 6:34am

Bryan995

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Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 6:34am

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What you are suggesting...Amounts to International racism, AND PREJUDICE!

If you DON'T fit...Then TOUGH!

As the international European/worldwide race laws stipulate...

ALL colours/creeds/nationalities etc, SHOULD be treated EQUALLY!

My/our money is as good as anyone else's, it is the SAME colour, AND we are ALL customers, without the 'said' money, they would have NO business..it doesn't matter WHO you are, so as a customer, we should all be treated with respect!

What YOU are suggesting, is that we are NOT good enough to be resident in THEIR country! B###S##T!

Furthermore...The MANY years that I have lived AND worked here in España, our 'hosts', have ALWAYS had their hands in our pockets!

I myself personally, is the type of person who will do anything, anywhere and anytime for ANYONE!..I have done it HERE MANY times, for many people, FREE/GRATIS!..Just ask around... The majority of nationals in our host country, will do NOWT for NOWT... cross my palm, NOT with silver, but with GOLD!

By the way...I DO speak Spanish! ¿COMPRENDÉ...

Paolo51

Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 8:07am

Paolo51

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Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 8:07am

I have had nothing but pleasant and good service from the assistants whether it be my bank, pharmacy, supermercado or any other shop, I have yet to find a miserable asssistant.

My only moan and it is a frustrating thing, it seems every time I am behind someone at the till there always seems to be an issue for the customer either searching their phone or purse to pay in 1cent coins which results in a long wait to get served.

On a different note the almost impossible task of getting building work done is a problem and an issue I find totally ridiculous with so much unemployment but hey that is something I can deal with.

elinspain

Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 8:23am

elinspain

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Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 8:23am

Hello

 Many years ago ( 18 to be exact) I was given similar advice when I moved here  & I remembered it and on the whole , it works. Complaining/ranting  loudly moaning about Spanish peoples lack of English   does not work. Hello, good morning isn't difficult in spanish  & a lovely way to start a conversation here.

 How much customer service in the UK is conducted in Spanish for the benefit of Spanish speakers?

 Embrace where you chose to live , be calm be patient , sometimes it's hard & sometimes it doesn't work but when it does - it's so rewarding.

Cheers

Elinspain

TP20

Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 8:43am

TP20

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Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 8:43am

Paolo51 wrote on Fri Jul 16, 2021 8:07am:

I have had nothing but pleasant and good service from the assistants whether it be my bank, pharmacy, supermercado or any other shop, I have yet to find a miserable asssistant.

My only moan and it is a frustrating thing, it seems every time I am behind someone at the till there always seems to be an issue for the customer either searching their phone or purse to pay in 1cent coins which results in a long wait to get served....

...

On a different note the almost impossible task of getting building work done is a problem and an issue I find totally ridiculous with so much unemployment but hey that is something I can deal with.

Couple of things that irritate me when supermarket shopping, customers that watch their shopping being scanned, then  when everything is through the till decide they need bags to start their packing. The other irritant is customers who put their shopping on the belt then wander off to finish their shopping!

On the subject of the op I have yet to hear the word sorry spoken by a Spaniard. Why is it so hard for the Spanish to apologise? All this cuts both ways.

Bryan995

Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 9:32am

Bryan995

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Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 9:32am

Paolo51 wrote on Fri Jul 16, 2021 8:07am:

I have had nothing but pleasant and good service from the assistants whether it be my bank, pharmacy, supermercado or any other shop, I have yet to find a miserable asssistant.

My only moan and it is a frustrating thing, it seems every time I am behind someone at the till there always seems to be an issue for the customer either searching their phone or purse to pay in 1cent coins which results in a long wait to get served....

...

On a different note the almost impossible task of getting building work done is a problem and an issue I find totally ridiculous with so much unemployment but hey that is something I can deal with.

Hola Paolo...Yes...The staff at MY bank, ARE professional/courteous/and helpful...

It's 'them upstairs' who do all of the shouting!

 ¡Lo siento MUCHO...buen fin de semana...🙂🅱️.

killjoy

Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 10:43am

killjoy

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Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 10:43am

The bottom line: Spain is completely different and I mean it serious. Nothing is what it seems to be at first sight. There is no "YES" of "NO", and instead "can, might, perhaps, almost, not quite, or the other way around". You can't rely or trust on anyone or anything. Don't show your cards and never put all eggs in the same basket. Don't disclose your personal circumstances and develop a reasonable mistrust. Keep distance to unknown individuals. Never sign anything which you do not fully understand. My personal experience after living permamnently in Spain since 1964: In the US I always got more than expected, In Spain I get less than promised. Of course I can live with that, and very comfortable.

Bryan995

Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 11:18am

Bryan995

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Joined: 26 Nov 2017

Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 11:18am

killjoy wrote on Fri Jul 16, 2021 10:43am:

The bottom line: Spain is completely different and I mean it serious. Nothing is what it seems to be at first sight. There is no "YES" of "NO", and instead "can, might, perhaps, almost, not quite, or the other way around". You can't rely or trust on anyone or anything. Don't show your cards and n...

...ever put all eggs in the same basket. Don't disclose your personal circumstances and develop a reasonable mistrust. Keep distance to unknown individuals. Never sign anything which you do not fully understand. My personal experience after living permamnently in Spain since 1964: In the US I always got more than expected, In Spain I get less than promised. Of course I can live with that, and very comfortable.

Bonjour Mon-Ami...

Completely CORRECT...

The late Jimmy Ruffin, (Motown), once said to me:

If you want to stay out of trouble, follow these three lines:

Mind your own business 

Keep your head down

Say nothing

How RIGHT Jimmy was! 

'Technology', is now becoming 'out of control'!

One day soon...It will eat itself...

This is why I don't get involved with Facebook/Twitter and all the rest of 'em...INCLUDING telephones!

There are unfortunately, many unscrupulous people who are ready to take your eyes out!

Despite Costa Blanca Forum being such a BRILLIANT service, I may retire from it/call it a day.

There are some luverly people here, it is such a shame!

For now...Merci/Gracias/Danke Schon and Ta Muchly...🅱️⛾.

Relyat

Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 11:24am

Relyat

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Joined: 12 Jul 2018

Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 11:24am

I do wonder why these mean spirited, xenophobic immigrants remain in Spain if they find it such an unpleasant place, populated by rude ingrates. 

They must live in a different country to the one in which I do. I wouldn't want their attitude anywhere near me. 

dinnerout

Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 11:32am

dinnerout

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Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2021 11:32am

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Bryan995 wrote on Fri Jul 16, 2021 6:34am:

What you are suggesting...Amounts to International racism, AND PREJUDICE!

If you DON'T fit...Then TOUGH!

As the international European/worldwide race laws stipulate...

ALL colours/creeds/nationalities etc, SHOULD be treated EQUALLY!

My/our money is as good as anyone else's, it is the SAME colour, AND we are ALL customers, without the 'said' money, they would have NO business..it doesn't matter WHO you are, so as a customer, we should all be treated with respect!

What YOU are suggesting, is that we are NOT good enough to be resident in THEIR country! B###S##T!

Furthermore...The MANY years that I have lived AND worked here in España, our 'hosts', have ALWAYS had their hands in our pockets!

I myself personally, is the type of person who will do anything, anywhere and anytime for ANYONE!..I have done it HERE MANY times, for many people, FREE/GRATIS!..Just ask around... The majority of nationals in our host country, will do NOWT for NOWT... cross my palm, NOT with silver, but with GOLD!

By the way...I DO speak Spanish! ¿COMPRENDÉ...

There's a big difference between 'culture' and 'prejudice' but I sense you'll never fully understand that Brian.

Some Brits don't get it and some don't want to because they think the British culture is superior. It's not.

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