When you use an out-of-network ATM, you may be hit with a double whammy when it comes to fees, facing charges from both your bank and the ATM operator. In fact, a recent survey from Bankrate found that on average, you’ll pay a record-high $4.73 in total fees for an out-of-network transaction.
Want to hold on to that cash? Here are some tips for getting around those pesky fees.
Four ways to beat the fees
One way to beat the fees is to use ATMs within your financial institution’s network. Your bank may operate its own machines, participate in a broad network such as Allpoint or MoneyPass, or both.
Citibank customers, for example, can withdraw cash fee-free from machines at Citi branches as well as at MoneyPass ATMs. Customers of Ally Bank, an online institution, can make surcharge-free withdrawals from ATMs in the Allpoint network.
Another option is to sign up for a checking account that reimburses out-of-network fees. TD Bank, for example, refunds such charges (and waives its monthly maintenance fee) if you have a minimum of $2,500 in its Beyond Checking account Online bank Axos Bank reimburses ATM fees with its Essential, Rewards and CashBack checking accounts — and the accounts charge no monthly fees.
A third trick: While you’re shopping, see whether you can get cash back at checkout when you make a purchase with your debit card. Target and Lowe’s, for example, allow this. This option usually comes with no fee, but stores commonly impose a limit of $40 to $50 per transaction.
If triggering out-of-network fees is unavoidable, consider withdrawing larger amounts of cash at each ATM visit to reduce the number of withdrawals you make and the amount of the fees you pay. If you need only $20 now, for example, take out $100 and save the extra money for later.
Planning is the key to avoiding ATM fees. While most merchants take credit and debit cards, there are times when only cash is accepted. Make note of these expenses and set a reminder to get some cash at your bank’s ATM or get cash back when you make a purchase. You could also use a petty cash box to keep some money around for those days when you are short on time and can’t make it to the bank.
Note: This item first appeared in Kiplinger's Personal Finance Magazine, a monthly, trustworthy source of advice and guidance. Subscribe to help you make more money and keep more of the money you make here.
Ella Vincent is a personal finance writer who has written about credit, retirement, and employment issues. She has previously written for Motley Fool and Yahoo Finance. She enjoys going to concerts in her native Chicago and watching basketball.
22 Margarita Day Deals and Discounts
From California to New York City, restaurants nationwide celebrate Margarita Day on February 22. Here’s to you!
By Kathryn Pomroy Published
Stock Market Today: Nasdaq Nears New High After Nvidia Earnings
Global stock markets rallied after the chipmaker's impressive financial results and guidance.
By Karee Venema Published
Switch to a Smaller Mobile Provider to Cut Your Phone Bill
AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon dominate the mobile wireless market, but it pays to shop around. We review the options from the smaller outfits.
By Ashlyn Brooks Last updated
Finfluencers Are a Rising Trend. But Should You Trust Their Advice?
Finfluencers — social media stars who make finance fun — are on the rise. But be careful about which investing gurus you trust.
By Kim Clark Published
How Identity Thieves Are Exploiting Your Trust
Con artists are finding new and unexpected ways to take your money and personal information. Here's what to do about it.
By Sandra Block Published
Six of the Best Budgeting Apps
Popular budgeting app Mint is shutting down. We've found some alternative options.
By Ella Vincent Published
More Americans Are Saying No to Full-Time Retirement
Increasingly, people say they plan to keep working their entire lives.
By David Crook Published
Three Smart Ways to Store Cash This Year
Looking for smart ways to store cash in 2024? Here are three ways to profit off interest-earning investments.
By Jeffrey R. Kosnett Published
New College Program Gives Students Seed Money To Invest
A University of Kentucky program provides students with seed money to become better savers and investors.
By Kim Clark Published
Women: Stay Involved in Family Finances
Don't rely on your spouse alone to manage family finances, even if your marriage is rock solid.
By Janet Bodnar Published