Saving a Buck: ATM Fees

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

When you need a little cash, an ATM is a way to get it fast. Unfortunately, they often come with fees, not only from the owner of the machine but from your own bank. Roger Beverage, with the Oklahoma Banker’s Association, said, “These machines and the system that operates them didn’t just fall off a truck and land someplace where it’s convenient for you to use them. They were put there at a cost.”

While they conveniently connect you to your bank account from virtually anywhere, experts say you should watch out for those fees.

Beverage said, “One of the reasons you need to think about how to avoid those fees is because they can add up over time if you aren’t careful.”

One way to avoid them is to consider your bank.
Most credit unions are connected allowing members to use any credit union ATM fee free.

Stores like 7-Elevens don’t charge a fee for using their machines.

However, your bank may hit you with a fee if they aren’t on the same network as the convenience store.

Matt Stratton, with Tinker Federal Credit Union, said, “The key is to know what your financial institution’s policies are.”

Experts say you can always get cash back for free at most grocery stores and some retailers.

The best way to avoid those fees is to simply plan ahead.

Stratton said, “If you are going to a special event and need cash then find one of those free ways to get it before you get there because most likely you’ll get feed if there’s an ATM at a festival or event.”

When it comes down to it, if the fee seems high, you can always cancel that transaction.

Beverage said, “You always have a choice. It is America.”

Financial experts say there are several online banks that will reimburse customers for any ATM fees they are charged.