Even people that pride themselves on being cashless might need to withdraw money once in a while. That’s why it’s important to know your bank’s daily ATM withdrawal limits before an emergency hits and you’re scrambling for money.
How are the limits set?
Generally, a bank will set the same default daily ATM limits for their customers, but the amount can vary from bank-to-bank. These limits are typically on a per calendar day basis.
At Bank of Luxemburg, a Wisconsin-based bank, the default limit for customers to make cash withdrawals at ATMs is $300. But there are opportunities to request an increase. DeAnna Tittel, senior vice president of retail at Bank of Luxemburg, says a customer who works as a truck driver might need a higher limit because they’re on the road a lot. Or a family going on a vacation might want a temporary increase on ATM cash withdrawal limits.
“We give that power right down to each branch manager,” Tittel says. “Even their relationship bankers —they do know their customers in our small communities.”
Talk with your bank to see if it’s willing to accommodate your cash withdrawal needs.
It’s important to know that some ATMs might have their own limits on cash withdrawals. So even a $1,000 daily ATM withdrawal limit on your debit card could be limited on an ATM that only allows a maximum of $300 worth of withdrawals, says Rose Oswald Poels, president and CEO for the Wisconsin Bankers Association.
Though not time efficient, you should be able to go to more than one ATM for a cash withdrawal in this situation.
Examples of ATM withdrawal limits at well-known banks
- Capital One: ATM withdrawals made using a 360 Checking Card have a daily limit of $1,000.
- Chase Bank: Has a $3,000 Chase in-branch ATM limit each day and a lower, $1,000 ATM limit, at other Chase ATMs. Chase customers have a $500 daily ATM withdrawal limit at non-Chase ATMs. But accounts opened in Connecticut, New Jersey and New York have a $1,000 ATM withdrawal limit at non-Chase ATMs.
- Discover Bank: Has a daily withdrawal limit of the lesser of your available balance or $510.
Why are there ATM limits?
The main reason banks have ATM limits is to protect your money and the bank. These account limits protect both parties in case someone has both your debit card or ATM card and the PIN.
Oswald Poels says there are two primary reasons why withdrawal limits are set. One is because ATMs only have a limited amount of cash in them and the other is related to security and fraud-related concerns.
“Should your card and PIN fall into the wrong hands, we certainly don’t want someone to be able to take out a lot of money from your account,” Oswald Poels says.
Alternatives to the ATM if you’ve hit the limit
Default daily ATM limits might not cut it for some emergencies. Going to a store, such as a grocery store or pharmacy, to get cash back with a purchase could be an option.
This money will likely count toward your bank’s point-of-sale daily limit. This purchasing limit is likely to be higher than your default ATM limit. But the store you’re shopping at will likely limit the amount of cash you can take out at the register.
What to do before you need cash in an emergency
Find out your bank’s ATM daily limit now in order to be better prepared for an emergency situation. It’s also a good idea to use your debit or ATM card every few months to make sure that it stays active.
Knowing both your card’s ATM withdrawal limits and the amount you’re able to withdraw from a certain machine can make a sudden need for cash easier to handle.
Featured image by RealPeopleGroup of Getty Images.