Banks, ATMs, and online banking systems have been overloaded towards the end of the Lunar New Year, forcing customers to wait long hours.
Hoa went to a major bank on Hanoi’s Duy Tan Street early one recent afternoon to process payment of a loan.
She was happy to notice that her turn would come soon, based on the token number she received, but it took an hour for her to be called.
The bank was full of faces weary from the long wait, which seemed 30 minutes on average. People found ways to occupy themselves, with some even taking out laptops to work while they waited. Others grew restive and frustrated, and left early without bothering for their turn to come.
A similar scene has been enacted for several days in many banks. On Tuesday (27th of the last lunar month), the waiting room of a bank in Hanoi’s Dong Da district had around 50 customers waiting at around 3 p.m. Each and every counter was occupied, and the staff had barely any time to break.
Long queues in front of banks have become a common sight these days. At a mall on the city’s Ba Trieu street, people were also lining up in front of ATMs. Some of the machines are broken, some were overloaded due to the large amount of transactions, and some ran out of cash.
In highly frequented places, the number of customers seeking banking services kept increasing day after day, slowing down every operation.
The situation was not much better with online banking systems, which have also been overloaded. Many users complained they could not access their apps, experienced system failure and encountered long delays in carrying out a transaction.