Banking Fees

Have you ever wondered how much money banks make off of your $1.50 “ATM convenience fee”? According to Yale Daily News, in 1999, the average consumer spent $155 in bank surcharges amounting to $1.9 billion in total revenue for the banks. This said, it is not likely that the practice of charging these fees will change for the better. So what can we do to get around this budget breaker?

Firstly, consider banking with a credit union. Most credit unions have no ATM fees for their customers to use another bank, or for other customers to use their ATM. If you go this route, you can bank with one credit union and withdraw from another without paying any charges.

Secondly, if you must use another ATM, take out MORE money than you will need rather than less. Taking out $100 will cost you $1.50 in fees, but taking out $20 five times costs you $7.50. Minimize your usage of these machines by taking out more than you need. You can always put the rest back later.

Finally, Check out the web. Visit your bank’s website. Typically, you can pull down a menu of fee-free ATMs and find all the branches of your local bank. And don’t overlook new stores like WAWA convenience stores that are now offering free ATM usage. Hey, a fee saved is a fee earned!

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