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Wise Spend Hack: Use ATMs Wisely

Wise Spend Hack: Use ATMs Wisely

It's Wise Spend Wednesday, and today we're diving into the world of ATMs! Cash is still king in many situations, but that ATM withdrawal can come with a surprise fee. Many banks charge for using out-of-network ATMs, turning a quick errand into a money-draining experience.

CreditSoup breaks it down on how to be an ATM all-star and avoid these unnecessary charges.

Out-Of-Network Fees

First things first, understand the enemy: out-of-network ATM fees. These can be a flat fee charged by the ATM owner, a fee from your bank, or even a combination of both. These fees can range from a few dollars to a significant chunk of change, depending on the banks involved.

Here's your secret weapon: your bank's ATM network. Most banks have a network of ATMs that you can use completely fee-free. This is a win-win – you get the cash you need, and your bank doesn't charge you extra. It's a good idea to find your bank's ATM locator, readily available on their website or app. Bookmark it on your phone for quick access on the go.

Back-up Strategies

But what if you're caught in a cash bind and your bank's ATM is nowhere in sight? Don't despair! Here are a couple of backup strategies:

• Look for a surcharge-free ATM network. Certain networks, like Allpoint or MoneyPass, offer fee-free withdrawals at a wide range of ATMs. Check if your bank partners with any of these networks.

• Consider alternatives to cash. Many stores offer cash back with debit card purchases, essentially giving you cash without the ATM fee. Just be mindful of any purchase minimums required.

Bonus Tip: Some banks, especially those with a focus on online banking, offer a limited number of out-of-network ATM fee reimbursements each month. Check your bank's policy to see if this applies to you.

Use ATM's Wisely

By being a smart ATM user, you can keep your hard-earned money working for you. Remember, a little planning goes a long way in avoiding those pesky fees. So, the next time you need cash, be an ATM all-star and stick to your bank's network!

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