ATMs, or Automated Teller Machines, present an easy and a convenient way to access your cash from almost anywhere in the world. But, if you’re new to utilizing ATMs and have never used them before, you might be a bit apprehensive – it is your your money, after all. That’s why we’re here! In this article, we’ll show you how to safely and effectively use an ATM.
People who use these machines can be targets of criminals, which is exactly why you need to make sure that you’re safe while you’re accessing cash through an ATM.
Make sure that you’re alone and be on guard if there are other people nearby. Stand in a way that will prevent other people from looking at the screen. Don’t forget to check the machine itself. You’ve probably heard about devices called card skimmers – thieves use them to steal money through the ATMs. If anything seems off about the device you want to use, go and find another one. Try using ATMs that are located in well-trafficked areas, if you have a chance.
Always insert the card in a way that’s indicated on the machine. Remember that some ATMs, especially those in areas with lots of tourists, charge special fees – you should avoid those. Also, machines that are outside of your home country will probably have some additional costs as well, tied to the currency change or the distance.
Always try to use debit cards and ATMs that are connected to your bank. If you, for example, have a Chase debit card, you should use it only on the Chase ATMs. Of course, you can use your card on almost all machines, but that also brings the risk of an additional fee, which you certainly want to avoid. Furthermore, some services offered by the machine probably won’t be available if your card belongs to another bank.
When selecting a language, don’t make a mistake. Once you accidentally select a language you don’t understand, it might be hard to get back to the language selection menu.
When entering your PIN (Personal Identification Number), make sure to shield the keypad with both your body and the hand. This will prevent other people (as well as the cameras hidden by the thieves) from seeing your PIN. This is probably the most important step in the whole cash transaction process and one that you should never forget to do.
When withdrawing money, you’ll usually be presented with two options:
Fast cash – this option allows the user to quickly get an already set amount of money – $50, $100, $150 and similar amounts.
Targeted withdrawal – this option allows you to type in the exact amount of cash you want to withdraw.
Be very careful when it comes to limits. Most banks and ATMs have a limit of how much money you can take from them on a daily basis. This varies from bank to bank, but it’s usually between $300 and $1000.
When ending a session, you will need to follow the on-screen instructions to exit the transaction menu and get your card back. Make sure that the screen is in the state you found it in, or otherwise the next person in line will be able to access your account. Don’t forget to take your money and the card – people who are in a hurry often leave them behind and put themselves in a big trouble.
With these points in mind, all of your ATM sessions will be easier to handle and also more secure. With a little bit of practice, you’ll get the hang of it and withdrawing the cash from an ATM will become a breeze.
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