Have you used an ATM recently? If so, you may have noticed that you were charged a fee. There are two basic types of ATM fees.
One of these is called a surcharge fee. This is charged by the ATM owner and can be as much as $3.00 per transaction. This is in contrast with any fees collected by a financial institution.
There can be another type of fee, though. You can have an ATM fee that is called a transaction fee. This is a sort of penalty levied against bank clients who don’t use their own bank’s ATMs.
Taken one at a time, the fees don’t seem like any big deal – $3.00 here, $3.00 there. But if you check over time and add up how many of these fees you have paid, you may be surprised. Why not take some simple actions to cut down the ATM fees you pay every month?
The first thing to do is to see if your bank charges a fee if you use the ATM of a different bank. Not all banks do. If you open an account with a bank that doesn’t assess such fees, you may pay as much as 50% less in surcharges.
Other banks will actually pay you back, if you use an ATM that assesses a surcharge fee. In fact, banks will sometimes pay you back if you are in a remote area and use an ATM that is operated by a separate owner.
A debit card also helps you to avoid transaction fees. A debit card can be used at an ATM to pull out cash, but it also works like a credit card at stores and can be used like a regular credit card at point of sale. The neat thing is, though, that it isn’t a credit card – the money comes right out of your checking account. This means you don’t need to go to an ATM.
Finally, try to be accurate when you assess your cash needs. How much will you need to cover you for the next week? It’s better to take out enough so that you don’t have to go back to the ATM yet again, instead of taking out an unrealistically small amount and then having to keep going back. Fewer transactions mean fewer fees.
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