ATM is one place where we keep visiting regularly throughout the month. Not once and not twice, a lot of us visit an ATM at least 5-10 times or more depending on our usage. Moreover, with the tie-us of multiple banks, we now have the flexibility to withdraw from any nearby ATM for up to 5 times in a month. Of course, there were no such limits on home branch ATMs till date. Hence, we withdraw in small quantities multiple times as and when we need. Personally too, I feel this is a good strategy since holding lump sum amounts will make us spend more.
However, the scenario has changed from Nov 1, 2014. RBI has set a limit to the number of withdrawals from ATMS. If you transact for more than 3 times per month, banks will be free to charge you. The 3 transactions also include balance enquiries, cheque book requests and mini statements apart from money withdrawals. Additional charge after 3 transactions will be Rs. 20 per transaction. Banks also have the option not to charge the customers. Here is what you should do now.
1) Use Cheques
Now, you might have to use more and more cheques for transactions with slightly higher values. Though few banks charge you extra for additional cheque books, it could be helpful in the long term. It will also mean that you have the additional safety of not carrying huge cash with you. Cheques have also become safer and are being credited faster with introduction of CTS.
2) Use Netbanking
Internet banking has gone a long mile ever since it was launched. There had been many incidents such as phishing attacks, hacking, etc which posed threats to net banking. However, it has only become better after all these. Moreover, net banking is the fastest way to transfer money. Use of options such as IMPS makes sure the transfer happens within seconds. SMS service from banks also informs you immediately of the proceedings such as credit/debit.
3) Withdraw in lump sum instead of small amounts
If you still believe in using more cash than the above two services, you need to plan your expenses well in advance. It’s not quite tough. You just have to know your expenses for the upcoming month. Instead of visiting the ATMs multiple times, you have to withdraw lumpsum amount which would suffice the expenses for the month. However, as discussed before, this would mean you would be enticed to spend more on account of higher cash in hand. So, self control is the key here. If it’s not possible for you, better choose one among the first two.
RBI has made this crucial change in order to stop excessive and improper usage of ATMs for unwanted purpose such as balance enquiries, mini statements, etc. Net banking can be used to check balance regularly, instead. Mini statements, cheque book requests and many other options are being made available through net banking these days. RBI believes this move will increase the digital banking system as a whole and also improve the financial thinking of an individual.