ATM fees — our favorite thing to complain about — rose five percent in the last year.
That's right, people. Withdrawing money from an out of network ATM — i.e. an ATM that's not run by your bank — now costs consumers an average of $4.35 per transaction, according to data compiled for the annual Bankrate Checking Survey. Your bank pockets $1.58 of this while the ATM machine owner keeps the remainder.
To put it another way: Every time you withdraw money from a local convenience store you're paying the equivalent of a Vente Chocolate Chip Frappucino from Starbucks. That's 720 calories of blended coffee product that you're paying for but not getting.
The survey also notes that overdraft fees — the cost of withdrawing more money than you have in your checking account — rose to an average of $32.74 this past year. This amounts to a 1.7 percent increase, which was less than the rate of inflation.
"Routinely incurring ATM fees is a sloppy financial habit, but it's one that can be fixed," Greg McBride, Bankrate's chief financial analyst said. "You can plug the hole in the bucket just by limiting withdrawals to your own bank's ATMs," he added.
Yes, true. But when your bodega is cash only and you really want that Snickers - or Oreo, or Pop Chips, or Milky Way, or pint of Ben & Jerry's Salted Caramel Core, does anyone expect you to walk 20 minutes to the nearest Bank of America?
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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