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Anybody using "ATM fee reimbursement" accounts with Fido/VG ?
Old 08-10-2008, 02:29 PM   #1
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Anybody using "ATM fee reimbursement" accounts with Fido/VG ?

Anyone using "ATM fee reimbursement" accounts with Fido or Vanguard ?

Fidelity Investments

I'd love to get rid of my local bank. Only reason I have it is for free ATM access - which is less and less and I'm using cards for all transactions.


Well 2 other reasons just came to mind:
  1. Getting rid of loose change (but I go to Community Bank and use their free machine)
  2. Depositing paper checks someone gives me.
I guess I can endorse checks and mail to Fido or Vanguard - right ?

Any "hidden fees" or "gotcha's" with these accounts ? I know there's a monthly maximum of ATM transactions - but I'm below that.

Thanks.
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Old 08-10-2008, 02:50 PM   #2
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So the Fido info says: "We automatically credit you all ATM fees at 1 million plus ATMs worldwide"

Then I read at bottom in fine print: "In addition, your mySmart Cash AccountSM will automatically be reimbursed for all ATM fees charged by other institutions while using a Fidelity Visa® Gold Check Card linked to your mySmart Cash AccountSM at any ATM displaying the Visa®, PLUS® or STAR® logos. The reimbursement will be credited to the mySmart Cash AccountSM the same day the ATM fee is debited from the account. Please note Visa does charge a foreign transaction fee of one percent that is not waived.

What does "foreign" mean ? Does foreign mean any non-Fido ATM in USA ? Or do they mean foreign as in "out of the country" ATM - like Europe ?

Banks suck.
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Old 08-10-2008, 02:53 PM   #3
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I have the Fido smartCash account. I've used the ATM card a couple of times and had the fees refunded automatically, no problem. You have to mail in your deposits, which takes a while. I have it connected to my brokerage account, with a minimum balance maintained by auto transfers and automatic overdraft protection, both from cash in the brokerage account. That also works fine. I have plenty of direct deposit and EFT debits/credits that work fine. No fees that I know of. I have three of these accounts, one of which has just $100 because it didn't play well with my trust accounts (had to use a joint registration to get everything working). I also got the credit card that rebates 1.5% cash into the account, which also works pretty well, though not automatically. I'm not aware of an ATM transaction limit, but I'm not likely to come anywhere near it. I use Quick Direct Connect to download the account transactions, with one little trick of creating it as a brokerage account and then telling Quicken to treat the cash as a separate checking account. I can't get it to auto-reconcile, but otherwise no problems there either.

I like it. Only mailing the deposits is a little awkward. For that reason I haven't completely closed out my local bank account.
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Old 08-10-2008, 03:27 PM   #4
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Banks suck.
I'm a big believer in credit unions. I've used the largest one in the world (or at least it used to be) for years as my primary "bank". When I moved to a rural area a few years ago, I continued to use the big, out-of-state CU as my primarily financial institution. But I opened a $2,000 savings account at the local bank. It pays a pittance for interest, but it gives me access to their ATM for quick cash, a place to cash checks (drawn primarily on my credit union which must annoy them) and the ability to have a local safe deposit box. But all my mainstream stuff goes through the CU. I also have a Vanguard card linked to my MMF; I guess I need to look into how I can use it for fee-free ATM withdrawals, but the arrangement above has worked well for me.
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Old 08-10-2008, 04:07 PM   #5
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I have a vanguard banking account which is basically a 'shim' over the prime money market account. The whole balance stays in the MM and they manage the check/deposit settlements on their own. Its free for flagship customers, I think its free for voyager too but I think they charge you for electronic bill payment below the flagship level.

Basically whenever I go grocery shopping and need a little wallet money I use the vanguard atm card and have them give me $100 or $200 cash back.

We also have a "free" account with the local credit union, Golden 1. I keep a couple of hundred in the checking acct and can use their debit card at any credit union atm with no fee. Sort of an emergency thing. I deposit my checks there because there are three of them within a half mile of my house. Have an electronic link between vanguard and them and after the checks clear, I transfer the money to the vanguard MM account.

Having the local credit union came in handy when we bought the house. I needed vanguard to wire the funds to the escrow account we were using to close and I needed it there within 2 days. Vanguard in true form decided they needed 7-9 days to mull it over before they'd send money to a financial institution I hadnt linked to them before. So I wired the money to the credit union (existing link, so no waiting period), and then walked in the next day and had them wire it to the escrow account. I felt like a money launderer, but it worked.

Vanguard will take checks signed over to them and mailed in. I did that a few times but frankly stuffing checks into the ATM on my way into the supermarket was easier.
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Old 08-10-2008, 06:39 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Delawaredave5 View Post
So the Fido info says: "We automatically credit you all ATM fees at 1 million plus ATMs worldwide"

Then I read at bottom in fine print: "In addition, your mySmart Cash AccountSM will automatically be reimbursed for all ATM fees charged by other institutions while using a Fidelity Visa® Gold Check Card linked to your mySmart Cash AccountSM at any ATM displaying the Visa®, PLUS® or STAR® logos. The reimbursement will be credited to the mySmart Cash AccountSM the same day the ATM fee is debited from the account. Please note Visa does charge a foreign transaction fee of one percent that is not waived.

What does "foreign" mean ? Does foreign mean any non-Fido ATM in USA ? Or do they mean foreign as in "out of the country" ATM - like Europe ?

Banks suck.
I'm sure this applies to withdrawals from ATM's in other countries. I've used an internet bank for years. I mail in checks for deposits, no problems, it just takes a little longer.
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Old 08-10-2008, 06:45 PM   #7
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Yep, they mean if you use the card as a Visa card to make charges outside the US.
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Old 08-10-2008, 07:53 PM   #8
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My Schwab debit card has a feature where they waive the foreign transaction fee when used overseas. It was the one I used at the ATMs in Mongolia for that reason.
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Old 08-10-2008, 09:41 PM   #9
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My Schwab debit card has a feature where they waive the foreign transaction fee when used overseas. It was the one I used at the ATMs in Mongolia for that reason.
Mongolia?? Name dropper

My debit card refunds foreign atm fees and does not charge a 1% foreign transaction fee. Some banks do and some don't, it's always wort checking with them before traveling overseas.
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Old 08-10-2008, 10:17 PM   #10
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Does the Vanguard Advantage account reimburse ATM fees? My reading indicated that you are entitled to free withdrawals from ATMs affiliated with PNC Bank - and that's it.

From their site: https://personal.vanguard.com/us/acc...resContent.jsp
Visa Gold debit card

Use your Visa® Gold debit card at any ATM worldwide wherever the Visa or Plus® System logos are displayed. Vanguard never charges a fee for an ATM transaction. However, you may be charged a surcharge by the bank that owns the ATM. All transactions from PNC-affiliated banks are free.


Would someone with an Advantage account please confirm/ deny? Thank you.
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Old 08-11-2008, 02:54 AM   #11
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havent paid an atm fee since im with fidelity in 20 years
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Old 08-11-2008, 08:12 AM   #12
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Mongolia?? Name dropper
Sarah's Mongolian Adventure
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Old 08-11-2008, 08:35 AM   #13
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I have a similar arrangement in a USAA asset management account which serves as my primary checking account. Once a month, I see the ATM fees rebated to my account together with 0.5% of my debit card purchases which run through as CC transactions (i.e. no PIN).
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Old 08-11-2008, 09:11 AM   #14
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My online bank also reimburses ATM fees for up to 4 transactions per month to a max of $2.50 per transaction.

Its a shame that Vanguard's Advantage account doesn't seem to provide a similar feature.
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Old 08-11-2008, 09:24 AM   #15
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Schwab for me, 2% interest no minimums no yearly fees, all the internet bill pay and checking features you would need. Also, they reimburse all of your ATM fees (actually it may be 3 per month, but I don't need cash that much so never has affected me)
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Old 08-11-2008, 04:26 PM   #16
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Fidelity smart cash for me. Works really well so far. I get my ATM reimbursement about 2 days after the withdrawal. I have used it all over the US. No fees and it has the full Fidelity bill pay. I also have a Fidelity branch about 15 minutes from my office, so I can turn in paper checks there if I need to. Very convenient for me.
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Old 08-11-2008, 04:53 PM   #17
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Schwab for me, 2% interest no minimums no yearly fees, all the internet bill pay and checking features you would need. Also, they reimburse all of your ATM fees (actually it may be 3 per month, but I don't need cash that much so never has affected me)
I believe Schwab limits you to $35 month in ATM reimbursements which at $2 a shot is 15+ a month.The other nice feature is there is no limit to cash withdrawals. This came in very handy when I was in Turkey at got offered a 10% discount for cash on a Turkish rug.

Also the Schwab Bank is linked to your Schwab account so any time you exceed your bank balance money is automatically transfered to the bank.
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Old 08-11-2008, 05:59 PM   #18
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Awesome - thanks for the link
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Old 08-12-2008, 09:23 AM   #19
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Schwab bank ATM fee reimbursement is unlimited for the "High Yield Investor" checking account. No minimum balance, and it currently pays about 2%.

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Old 08-13-2008, 08:47 PM   #20
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Both Schwab and E-Trade fully reimburse my atm fees
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