smart spending

5 smart ways to spend and save in 2011

Be cash-savvy
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Could 2011 be your year to get smart about getting cash?

According to Bankrate's 2010 Checking Study, more than 99 percent of ATMs charge an out-of-network fee for use.

"It's not unusual for an adult to be paying a few hundred dollars of bank fees each year," Patzer says.

McBride offers advice for avoiding these fees altogether. From using mobile-based applications that help you find your closest in-network ATM to receiving cash back for point-of-sale transactions at grocery stores and drug stores, cash doesn't have to cost you.

Some consumers prefer using cash to help avoid unnecessary spending, but there are perks to relying more heavily on the plastic in your wallet.

"There are definite pros to being less cash-dependent," McBride says. "Debit and credit card rewards programs enable you to get paid on transactions you make anyway."

While Bankrate's 2010 Debit Card Rewards Survey revealed that more than half of the programs included had no annual fee, McBride warns that consumers can expect to see more fees emerge over the next year.




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