Big four scrap ATM fees

In a landmark move for Australian banking, the majors announced over the weekend that they have decided to abolish ATM withdrawal fees.

CBA led the charge, announcing on Sunday (24 September) that is has removed ATM withdrawal fees, so all CommBank and non-CommBank customers won’t be charged an ATM withdrawal fee when they cash out at any of the group’s 3,400 ATMs.

RBA data shows that Australians made more than 250 million ATM withdrawals from banks other than their own last year.

“Australians have complained for some time about being charged fees for using another bank’s ATM,” CBA group executive of retail banking services Matt Comyn said.

“We have been listening to consumer groups and our customers and understand that there’s a need to make changes that benefit all Australians, no matter who they bank with. This is one of the steps we’re taking to make that happen,” Mr Comyn added.

“As Australia’s largest bank, with one of the largest branch and ATM networks, we think this change will benefit many Australians and hopefully demonstrate our willingness to listen and act on customer feedback.”

CBA’s “no ATM withdrawal fee access” applies to CommBank-branded ATMs and excludes Bankwest ATMs and customers using overseas cards.

ANZ quickly followed. The change will impact non-ANZ customers who are currently charged a $2 fee when they use an ANZ ATM. ANZ customers are not currently charged when they use one of ANZ's more than 2,300 machines.

ANZ’s change will be implemented early next month.

NAB announced on Sunday that its own customers who use NAB ATMs currently incur no cash withdrawal fee. This has now been extended to non-NAB customers using the bank’s ATMs.

Westpac was the last of the majors to join the party, which prompted the Australian Bankers’ Association (ABA) to release a statement welcoming the move.

“It’s a boon for customers and makes banking more affordable for everyday Australians,” ABA chief Anna Bligh said.

“This is the latest in a suite of initiatives by banks to create better products and services for customers and boost customer choice, including reducing interest rates on credit cards and offering fee-free transaction accounts.

“A competitive banking system is good for customers and good for the sector.”

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