"So incredibly obtuse and not worth the time"
I've used Western Union before, but they've recently started using a phone verification process that's incredibly futile and worthless. I had been told that the only way for me to send money online would be to verify my identity using a phone number. When I provided my cell phone number to the agent (which I have had as an active line for nearly 11 years) - I was then told that the number could not be verified through the third party agency. I understand the need for security and I applaud their interest in providing customers with excellent fraud protection, however, that should constantly be juxtaposed against the interest of keeping customers in the first place. If I wasn't comfortable assuming some risk at all, I would take the money to the location myself under armed guard, however, that's neither convenient nor realistic, therefore I choose to use the service, as I have many times before.
Although seemingly a minor issue, put into context, this was serious to me as it was a complete waste of a half hour and apparently they ended up sending the request to my bank even when it wasn't approved. Basically, they told my bank to take the money out, then tried to verify my identity, then because I have my phone number unlisted, they couldn't go ahead with the transfer. At this point, I would've been annoyed anyway because of the wasted time, but on top of that I now have a significant amount of money withdrawn from my account for no reason whatsoever, and that money doesn't come back for another 10 days!
So at the conclusion of it all, they told me that my only alternative would be to physically go to a Western Union Location and send the money using cash, i.e. "Send money online...as long as you have a phone number that can be verified using______."
Until they change this ridiculous policy without expending the energy to think it through an additional level, I refuse to ever use Western Union again. Instead I went with moneygram.com
Product or Service Mentioned: Western Union Money Transfer.
Monetary Loss: $400.