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Saturday, January 21, 2006


Using your debit card in other banks' ATMs

Whenever you take cash out via a debit card in an ATM not owned by your bank, you might be charged twice: your bank may charge you $1-3 and at the same time,the ATM owner bank may also charge you another $1-$3. Yes,that's true,don't be surprised.

Nowadays, though more and more banks,especially internet-based online banks, will allow you to use their debit cards in other banks' ATM for free, you still need pay attention to how much the ATM owner bank charges for each transaction.

Don't be frustrated. I have a good news for you here: in United States, there are several banks not only allow you to use debit card for free anywhere, but also reimburse you the transaction fee charged by ATM owner banks, which means you can cash out anywhere for free(even outside US, I am not sure at this point if all banks holds the same policy, though I do know USAA bank reimburses your international transaction fee).

I listed several popular and reputable banks who reimburse ATM surcharge.

1. USAA: one of the best internet banks in US, IMHO. Reimburse $15.0 ATM surcharge per month( you have only 10 free free ATM withdrawals per month though). USAA bank is a bank, not a credit union, so anyone in US can join it,however, you must call in(1-800-531-2265) first to get a member# and then apply their banking products. If you or your family members don't have any military background, you can not apply their other products, such as insurance.

2. Farmbureau Bank: Up to five monthly ATM fees reimbursed, for performance checking account.

3. Umbrella Bank: Reimburse you four to six times of ATM transaction fee per statement cycle(up to $1.50 each) depending on checking account type.

4. Compass Bank:You need mail them your ATM transaction receipt to get your fee back. Not recommended here.

5.First Internet Bank of Indiana, or FirstIB, $6 reimburse each month.

6. GMAC Bank, Money Market account, reimburse ATM surcharge for up to 4 transactions per month (Total can't exceed $6 each month)

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