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How to avoid needless and costly ATM fees

(KOMO file photo)

You need some cash and you need it right now. Chances are there’s an ATM nearby, but is that cash machine part of your bank or credit union’s network?

If not, expect to pay for the convenience.

“ATM withdrawals are a lot like health insurance, you've got to stay in network. Go out of network and it's going to cost you,” said Greg McBride, chief financial analyst at Bankrate.com. “When you go outside the ATM network you're going to typically pay both the ATM owner and your own bank a fee for doing so. Together those fees can easily add up to $5 or more and takes a big chunk out of that $50 withdrawal you might be making.”

These ATM fees are completely avoidable. Plan for where and when you make a cash withdrawal, so you can stay in-network.

If you’re away from home, go to your bank’s website and find the nearest in-network machine.

If you're really in a pinch for cash and there's not an in-network ATM nearby, go to a store and get cash back at the point of sale when you use your debit card. That's essentially a free withdrawal.

More Info: How to avoid these common bank fees

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