How to Beat Pesky Fees

No matter how much you try to swat them away, pesky fees keep nibbling at your travel bookings, wireless plans, bank accounts, investments and pretty much every other part of your financial life.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

No matter how much you try to swat them away, pesky fees keep nibbling at your travel bookings, wireless plans, bank accounts, investments and pretty much every other part of your financial life. Although the fees may not seem like much on their own, they can add up to hundreds or even thousands of dollars a year, putting a big dent in your wallet.

Here, we’ve listed common fees in five categories, plus ways to eliminate or reduce them. Some of the fees are legitimate—professionals such as investment advisers and real estate brokers deserve compensation, after all. But if you’re overpaying for a service, you can make moves to tug down the rate. And with some preparation and knowledge, you can wipe out the most irritating charges.

Lisa Gerstner
Contributing Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance

Lisa has spent 15 years with Kiplinger’s Personal Finance and heads up the magazine’s annual rankings of the best banks, best rewards credit cards, and financial-services firms with the best customer service. She reports on a variety of other topics, too, from retirement to health care to money concerns for millennials. She has shared her expertise as a guest on the Today Show, CNN, Fox, NPR, Cheddar and many other media outlets around the nation. Lisa graduated from Ball State University and received the school’s “Graduate of the Last Decade” award in 2014. A military spouse, she has moved around the U.S. and currently lives in the Philadelphia area with her husband and two sons.