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Old 09-29-2014, 06:27 AM   #21
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Why worry about a debit card … don't you use a cash-back credit card instead? And pay in full every month.
+1 I have never paid anything with a debit card. ATM use exclusively. I'm not sure there is much risk but I stopped even using ATM cards on international travel many years ago. I carry two or three CCs (always called in) and get a substantial amount of local cash before leaving. I bring an ATM card just in case but haven't used it for decades.
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Old 09-29-2014, 07:08 AM   #22
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^ If I'm in the US, I use a credit card for every purchase, even a $0.99 cup of coffee, for the air line miles or to meet sign up bonuses.

In some countries such as Thailand the merchant will add back the commission that Visa/MasterCard charges them to discount the debt, even when by 'law' its actually illegal to do so. Then are Foreign Exchange Transaction fees of up to 3%. Not all cards reimburse transaction fees...
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Old 09-29-2014, 07:34 AM   #23
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^ If I'm in the US, I use a credit card for every purchase, even a $0.99 cup of coffee, for the air line miles or to meet sign up bonuses.

In some countries such as Thailand the merchant will add back the commission that Visa/MasterCard charges them to discount the debt, even when by 'law' its actually illegal to do so. Then are Foreign Exchange Transaction fees of up to 3%. Not all cards reimburse transaction fees...
No foreign exchange fees or ATM transaction fees if you walk up to ATM and withdraw local currency using Schwab Investor Checking account VISA ATM card.

Plus you get great exchange rate.

This is why Schwab is very popular with travelers / Expats who spend lot of time oversees.

In US I would rather use Amex and get 1-3 % cache back on all purchases. But Amex is Debit card (not online banking).
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Old 09-29-2014, 07:46 AM   #24
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I correct myself. Amex is credit card.....

Schwab is Platinum Visa Debit card (online banking) available to some (maybe most) people with brokerage account with Schwab.
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Old 09-29-2014, 08:56 AM   #25
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Why worry about a debit card … don't you use a cash-back credit card instead? And pay in full every month.
Agree. I use my credit card for most purchases over about 25 dollars including on-line bill paying whenever possible and I get 1.5 percent cash back. Last year I got about $600 back. When I need cash, I use my Schwab bank card at any ATM and get full ATM fee reimbursements at the end of each month.
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Old 09-29-2014, 09:06 AM   #26
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If you could find a solid Credit Union that you can join, that would be preferable to any bank, IMHO.

I don't mind when my credit card companies check up on my purchases. I like the security.
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Old 09-30-2014, 01:38 PM   #27
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A friend of mine had his bank of America card deactivated while he was hiking the Appalachian Trail. When he got to a place with a cell phone signal and called the bank, they told him they would not reactivate his card unless he showed up at a branch office in person! He escalated because he was completely out of money and pretty desperate but to no avail. It just so happened that I had agreed to meet him if he made it to a certain point on the trail and so I ended up taking him to the bank. But can you believe that? The guy is out in the boonies and makes a case to various levels of support people at Bank of America and they won't budge!
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Old 09-30-2014, 02:28 PM   #28
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Can't say that I'm surprised at their hardline stance. A few years ago, I needed to close out my deceased grandmother's various checking/savings accounts (I was the executor). US Bank, no problem; Wells Fargo, slightly more difficult but still no problem; BOA? Oh boy… I needed to show up at a BOA office, any office. Problem was that BOA had no presence in my state of residence at the time and their nearest office was roughly 7-8 hours driving time away. After multiple calls and speaking with personnel of increasingly higher levels of responsibility, they never budged. Fortunately I had an upcoming business trip that did put me within an hour of one of their offices and I was able to get the business completed. Can't say since that I've had any great desire to become a customer.
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Old 09-30-2014, 05:41 PM   #29
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A friend of mine had his bank of America card deactivated while he was hiking the Appalachian Trail. When he got to a place with a cell phone signal and called the bank, they told him they would not reactivate his card unless he showed up at a branch office in person!
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A few years ago, I needed to close out my deceased grandmother's various checking/savings accounts (I was the executor). US Bank, no problem; Wells Fargo, slightly more difficult but still no problem; BOA? Oh boy… I needed to show up at a BOA office, any office. Problem was that BOA had no presence in my state of residence at the time and their nearest office was roughly 7-8 hours driving time away.
Wow, after hearing these two stories I'll make it a point to never, ever, open a BOA account!
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Old 09-30-2014, 08:12 PM   #30
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These are nightmare BofA stories. Last week, I made a big purchase in a strange city that was very different from any previous spending pattern. BofA refused to make the purchase and their fraud system locked my card from future use. I called them on the phone, they were able to tell me the problem, I was able to confirm on the phone the I was me, the fraud hold was released and my card was able to be used again. No travel to any BofA office, although several were nearby, no hassle and no problem. Took only a few minutes, most of it on hold in the phone queue. Perhaps their new fraud systems are less nightmare than these older stories.
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Old 09-30-2014, 11:39 PM   #31
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No foreign exchange fees or ATM transaction fees if you walk up to ATM and withdraw local currency using Schwab Investor Checking account VISA ATM card.

Plus you get great exchange rate.

This is why Schwab is very popular with travelers / Expats who spend lot of time oversees.

In US I would rather use Amex and get 1-3 % cache back on all purchases. But Amex is Debit card (not online banking).
I was talking about using credit cards abroad
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Old 10-01-2014, 10:34 AM   #32
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I've known about the Schwab no ATM fee account for some time but never got around to opening one even though I have a brokerage account with them.

However I just got back from Toronto and chase charged outrageous fees (I knew they were bad but not that bad). So both me and wife opened one this mornings.

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Old 10-01-2014, 10:54 AM   #33
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These are nightmare BofA stories. Last week, I made a big purchase in a strange city that was very different from any previous spending pattern. BofA refused to make the purchase and their fraud system locked my card from future use. I called them on the phone, they were able to tell me the problem, I was able to confirm on the phone the I was me, the fraud hold was released and my card was able to be used again. No travel to any BofA office, although several were nearby, no hassle and no problem. Took only a few minutes, most of it on hold in the phone queue. Perhaps their new fraud systems are less nightmare than these older stories.
A few years ago when DW was visiting family overseas she was attempting to purchase a $300 item when her BOFA visa card was denied but fortunately she used her Fidelity AMEX card with no problem. I was able to unlock the card the next day by calling BOFA and they advised to notify them before traveling.

Since then we notify them online of our destination(s) and have had no problems.
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Old 10-01-2014, 11:05 AM   #34
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Can't say that I'm surprised at their hardline stance. A few years ago, I needed to close out my deceased grandmother's various checking/savings accounts (I was the executor). US Bank, no problem; Wells Fargo, slightly more difficult but still no problem; BOA? Oh boy… I needed to show up at a BOA office, any office. Problem was that BOA had no presence in my state of residence at the time and their nearest office was roughly 7-8 hours driving time away. After multiple calls and speaking with personnel of increasingly higher levels of responsibility, they never budged. Fortunately I had an upcoming business trip that did put me within an hour of one of their offices and I was able to get the business completed. Can't say since that I've had any great desire to become a customer.
It sounds like what was needed was a letter from your lawyer to the bank, on his letterhead. Often if you get opposition, a certified letter makes a difference, and when you add that its from a lawyer, it gets to different folks.
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Old 10-01-2014, 11:23 AM   #35
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I'm happy with Ally though we have a local bank for our everyday use.
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Old 10-01-2014, 10:42 PM   #36
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I'm leaning toward a credit union and the sooner the better. I kind of like the idea of a not for profit business for my banking needs.
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