In the recent past, there have been a few occasions where the Relationship Manager of my Bank asked if I had an ATM card issued by the bank. For example, I called up the Bank to request for a new cheque book and the Bank Manager told me that it would be faster if I had the ATM card. On another occasion, I forgot the password to check my balance online and wanted to retrieve or change the password. Once again, I was told that it could be done immediately if I had an ATM card. This put me on the task of finding genuine advantages and benefits of using Bank ATM Cards.
Is the Bank ATM Debit Card only for withdrawing the cash ?
Until now I was under the impression that Bank issues ATM cum Debit Card only for withdrawing the cash from the ATMs. These interactions with my Relationship Manager set me thinking if ATM cards have other uses also.
To my pleasant surprise I found that it is quite beneficial to have the ATM Debit Card of your Bank. Therefore, I am sharing with you the Advantages and Benefits of using Bank ATM Cards
Advantages and Benefits of using Bank ATM Cards
#1 Quick Cash Withdrawal
As the name suggests and is well known to all, just insert your ATM Debit Card into the Automated Teller Machine, punch the code and the amount you want to withdraw and you get the cash in your hands.
In addition to the above there are many lesser known but useful features such as:
#2 Anyone Can Have Bank Card
All you need is a Bank Account to get a debit card cum ATM card issued to you. This is much easier than applying for a credit card as a debit card is simply linked to your bank account.
#3 Account balance inquiry
You can check your account balance at the ATM. Also there is a facility to get mini statement of your bank account.
#4 Details of recent transactions
Through the ATM card you can quickly get the mini statement giving the details of recent transactions carried out in your bank account. Not only that, you can print this statement too.
Of course, the information would be in brief and limited to the last 8 or 10 transactions only.
#5 Deposit cash / cheques
Did you miss the banking hours or are you far away from the bank branch? Now there is no need to go the branch to deposit cash or cheques. Just go to the nearest ATM and do the needful. The ATM clearing times are displayed at the ATM.
#6 Request for new cheque book
As in my case you can also make a request for a new cheque book through the ATM 24 x 7, instead of driving down to the branch and filling in the requisition slip.
#7 Transfer funds between accounts within the same Bank
If you are holding the ATM card then most of the banks allow you to transfer the funds from one account to another account on a real time basis. Some banks also let you transfer funds from your accounts to any third party provided the account is with the same bank.
#8 Pay your Utility bills
Under this useful feature provided by most of the banks, you can make payment for utility bills.
#9 Make other payments too
Using your ATM card you can now make payment for your Credit Card Bill, Pay Taxes, do Mobile Phone re charge etc.
Benefits of using Bank ATM cum Debit Cards
The benefits of using Bank ATM cards are more than evident.
#1 Save time
This is perhaps the single most benefit. Save time in driving down to the branch and you do not have to waste time waiting in the queue to perform your transactions. The ATM Card facilities provide you with the option of banking instantly for various transactions mentioned above.
#2 Convenient 24×7 Banking
At the ATM, now you are not bound to do your transactions within banking hours. There no need to worry about bank holidays or public holidays. It is 24 x 7, 365 days a year banking facility.
#3 Withdraw Cash when overseas
Depending on the type of facility provided by your bank, if you are travelling overseas, then the card can be used to draw currency of the country you are travelling to, from the ATM.
Of course, you should check before hand if your bank has given you this facility.
#4 Universally Accepted
Whether you are in town or out of town (or in another country), you can forget about carrying loads of cash with you. Just carry your ATM cum debit card. It is normally accepted everywhere. However you must check with the restaurant or the hotel if they have a system of accepting the credit and debit cards. You can almost be sure if there is master card logo on your debit card. Also you should make double sure by telling your bank that you’re leaving your station and there should be any interruption in the service.
#5 Security features
The use of ATM is restricted only to the person who knows the PIN. Thus if you keep the PIN confidential then no one but you can use the ATM to do the banking transactions.
Also for safety purposes, you can set daily transaction limits and the ATM receipts can help you keep track of your transactions and the money withdrawn or transferred. Also you can change your PIN as an additional security measure.
#6 Save your account from being dormant
Often one or the other account goes dormant if you have not done any transaction for 6 months or so. To make it operational again is a hassle. The reason for this is that most of us are hard pressed for time. Now you can do one small transaction at regular intervals to keep it active.
#7 Helpful Budgeting Tool
With an ATM Debit card you can never go overboard with your money spending. The debit card ensures that you get to spend only that much money that you have in your bank account. This means you cannot go into a situation like “credit card debt”. This helps you to strictly stay within the budget limits, unlike with credit cards.
Other Advantages and Benefits of using Bank ATM Debit Cards
- ATM points are conveniently located at multiple locations. You can go the ATM of any bank to withdraw cash – provided your ATM card is linked with that bank.
- There is no need to fill out withdrawal and deposit slips – unlike the practice at the bank branch.
- Even when travelling overseas, you can withdraw cash at ATMs – provided your local laws permit it.
If there are advantages and benefits of using Bank ATM cards, there are some potential risks associated too. Here are some guidelines, if followed you can avert or minimize the risk of debit card frauds:
- As soon as you receive your card, sign at the back.
- Keep the card safe to guard against loss or theft – just like you would keep your cash, credit cards or jewelry.
- If possible, carry credit cards and debit cards separately from your cash wallet
- If you lose or misplace your ATM debit card, immediately notify your bank.
- Choose a PIN number which is different from your house number or birthday so that it is difficult to guess by a hacker.
- Never share your PIN number with anyone and also do not write it somewhere. Just memorize it.
- Keep receipts of all transactions done through your ATM debit card for your records and future reference.
- Periodically you should check your statements and if you find any discrepancy then take up with your bank immediately.
- Ask your bank to issue you a chip-enabled debit card, if available. While doing transactions for retail purchases, this is more secure than swiping the magnetic strip.
Now carry your Bank account in your wallet.
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