BNZ customers hit by 'major outage'

The Bank of New Zealand has restored access to cards and ATMs after a "major outage" on Saturday morning that left hundreds of customers with no access to their money.

The outage, which BNZ said had "affected some of [its] systems" in a Twitter post, caused headaches as people tried to go about their weekend.

Twitter user @bigrichNZ said he was embarrassed at "one shop too many" on Saturday morning when his card was declined.

Another said she was embarrassed to order lunch out and eat it, only to discover she couldn't pay.

Comedian Melanie Bracewell tweeted saying she was "trapped" at LA's airport because she couldn't access her "own damn money".

Website Down Detector, where people can report outages, had hundreds of reports from customers affected.

Internet banking and mobile banking were still down, BNZ said, but would soon "follow suit" and be back up and running.

"Huge apologies to anyone inconvenienced by this, we appreciate the patience and understanding shown as we worked toward a resolution."

It is unclear exactly what systems were affected, but some speculated it was related to an outage at Australian parent company NAB, which went down at the same time.

One Twitter user, @suburban_ennui, suggested the bank was simply experiencing a "giant unholy clusterf**k", prompting BNZ to muse that "particular terminology" was not part of its "brand tone guidelines".