Coming Soon… RBC® Mobile Banking Apps for iPhone® and BlackBerry® Smartphones – RBC Royal Bank

I heard about this over at Mobile Syrup: Coming Soon… RBC® Mobile Banking Apps for iPhone® and BlackBerry® Smartphones – RBC Royal Bank

I’m an RBC customer with multiple products but I have neither an iPhone nor a Blackberry (nor an Android or any other smartphone). I do have a simple phone with a good web browser that can access RBC’s mobile banking web site. Just like any iPhone, Blackberry, Android, etc. phone can!!! I’d rather see RBC improving the functionality of the mobile banking web site rather than wasting my fees to build and maintain smartphone applications I’ll never use!

Seriously, just because it’s cool doesn’t mean it’s a good idea!

Even if I did get a smartphone it wouldn’t be an iPhone or Blackberry. So how many apps is RBC going to build and maintain? How many customers is RBC going to frustrate by not providing them an app or not updating their app as frequently as the other platform’s app!?

Please, they should stick with the mobile banking web site, work on it, and everyone will benefit.


Cross-posted on 2FatDads at Coming Soon… RBC® Mobile Banking Apps for iPhone® and BlackBerry® Smartphones – RBC Royal Bank

Cup Cake Camp Montreal, a.k.a. Sugar Rush Sunday

It shouldn’t be Cup Cake Camp, they should call it Sugar Rush Sunday!

We decided to make an event of it, we took the train and walked up to the Queen Elizabeth hotel for around 12:45pm.  Plenty of time I figured since the doors opened at 1pm.  

When we got there the doorman (apparently an honest one not sitting in jail for extorting money from cabbies) informed the “line has already formed.”  The “line” I wondered, there’s a line-up for cup cakes?!  What have I gotten myself into!?

Apparently Cup Cake Camp Montreal is a premier fund raising event, the number of people attending was insanity!!!  For cup cakes!!! Well, okay for Kids Help Phone and Tablée des Chefs but we were all there to eat cup cakes!
My kids had a blast, a sugar rush blast.  Every cup cake was their favourite, but in the end managed to choose only a couple a bring home and one to eat there.  I couldn’t get over the elaborate decorations and designs the chefs were able to create with icing sugar; and the amount of effort that must have gone into making all the cup cakes they donated to this event.
Many thanks to the organizers, the volunteers, and all the sponsors for great, unique, event.

Cross-posted on 2FatDads at Cup Cake Camp Montreal, a.k.a. Sugar Rush Sunday

Money for Nothing and Your Cheques for Free

My most sincere apologies to Dire Straits and their fans, please join me in seeing the humour in the title rather than suing us.  Thanks!

And sincere apologies to my readers as well: unfortunately I don’t know any legal way to get money for nothing – even someone has to buy your lotter ticket.

Getting your cheques for free though is a different story.  As they say, you can always negotiate with your bank and try to get free stuff.  You can even get an account that provides free cheques (as in “the price is included in your monthly fee”).

A post over at  Canadian Personal Finance Blog was published just as I was running out of cheques in one of my accounts, and the comments contained a link to something very interesting: an alternative to buying cheques from your bank!  Yes it is possible!  For some time now cheques have a standard, that is published and publicly available, so technically anyone could print their own standardized cheques.  And if you’re a company that issues a lot of cheques this isn’t a bad idea.  But if you’re an individual who just needs personal cheques then the investment in magnetic ink and special paper would be excessive.

Most, if not all, Canadian banks use Davis+Henderson to print their cheques.  The alternative is ASAP Cheques, for both business and personal cheques.  They’re Canadian, based in Gananoque, Ontario, but serve all of North America.  Their deal on personal cheques is 100 cheques (4 books) for $20 and $2.75 shipping & handling plus GST (and HST if necessary).  This is considerably better your typical bank’s offer of about $30 for 100 cheques and $5 for shipping & handling plus GST & PST.

They have an even better offer if you’re okay with the basic cheque design: 200 cheques for $25.50!!!  These are single cheques, not duplicates although those are available too if carbon-copies are still your thing.

Before you order from ASAP Cheques you need to be aware of two things:

  1. Make sure you order before you run out of cheques since you need to send them a VOID cheque as a sample.  If you’ve already run-out, or don’t have any cheques to begin with, you can get a Cheque Sample Specification from your bank.  This is basically a VOID cheque printed on a full-sheet of paper with all the information necessary to identify you and your bank and you’ll need to e-mail them a scanned copy or mail or fax it to them; and
  2. If this is the first time you order from them there is additional verification process they go through so it can take a bit longer to get your cheques (although I have to admit I got my cheques within a week of starting the whole process).

When you order from ASAP Cheques though you don’t get a register or a nice little box to keep your other cheque books in.

Cross-posted on 2FatDads at Money for Nothing and Your Cheques for Free.

Update to the GMail Keyboard Shortcut graphical cheat sheet

Thanks to a post over at the Google Operating System blog I became aware of a couple new keyboard short-cuts when using GMail.

The two now short-cuts aren’t documented but they work as advertised:
  • b will create a new e-mail with both the CC and BCC fields displayed, while
  • d will create a new e-mail with the CC field displayed.
You can’t use the short-cuts after you’ve already created a new e-mail.