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RBC now offering telephone service in any language


More than 2,600 translators standing by round-the-clock

TORONTO, August 2008 — To help ensure that Canadians from diverse backgrounds can address their financial affairs in their preferred language, RBC is offering a multi-language telephone service that can assist clients in more than 150 languages.

RBC’s new multi-language telephone service makes available a network of more than 2,600 specialized interpreters to help with day-to-day basic banking inquiries such as opening an account, paying bills or requesting foreign exchange information. Customers call one convenient number at 1-800-ROYAL 1-1 to access the RBC agent-assisted service, and within minutes can be chatting with an interpreter via a three-way confidential conference call.

“We’re always looking for ways to make it easier for customers to do business with us,” said Mark Whitmell, director, Cultural Markets. “Now with a multi-language telephone service, customers of diverse backgrounds can make the call on their terms. This is really about helping our customers feel welcome, comfortable and confident by enabling communication in a language of their choosing.”

Through word-of-mouth alone, the service introduced in April has been averaging about 500 calls per month, with the most common language requested being Spanish, followed by Russian, Vietnamese, Mandarin and Korean. This new service complements RBC’s dedicated phone line (1 888 ROYAL 9-8) set up for Chinese speaking clients, which offers service in Cantonese and Mandarin and fields more than 20,000 calls per month. RBC Direct Investing also offers telephone trading and customer service in Cantonese and Mandarin at 1 800-667-8668.

These and other services for newcomers are featured on RBC’s newly redesigned website dedicated to new Canadians (, which is available in English, French and simplified Chinese and receives more than 70,000 visitors a month. The site, first launched in 2005, provides newcomers with relevant and tailored information to give them the confidence they need to make financial decisions at every stage of their transition to Canada - before they arrive, as they get settled and as they plan for their future.

As part of this new redesign, customers can now locate a branch where three or more people speak their language at In addition, by visiting, new Canadians can insert the postal code of their desired neighborhoods and compare locations based on a number of key criteria, such as the cultural composition of the area, the average housing price, average income of residents, as well as available schools, services and hospitals.

This month the bank also released through its branches and website new step-by-step fact sheets in 14 languages, introducing Canadian products and services from the perspective of a newcomer. RBC has been reinventing itself over the past few years to better connect with new immigrants by introducing a variety of products and services designed to help newcomers transition, explained Whitmell.


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