BofA Customers - ATM, Recent returnees

May 19th, 2008, 10:37 AM
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BofA Customers - ATM, Recent returnees


We will be in Spain on a pre-cruise stop in a few months. Looking to hear from people that have recently returned from Spain that are Bank of America customers and used your BofA ATM card in Spain.

Did you or did you not get charged a $5 per transaction fee and/or the 1% conversion fee at either a Deutsche Bank or Barclays ATMs?

Per BofA website, the Global Alliance no fee is suppose to only apply in the partner bank's home country. But, I've seen some reports that in Spain, people were not charged. So, . . . looking for real life data from people who have recently returned.

Thanks in advance!

brentp is offline  
May 19th, 2008, 10:45 AM
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I was charged the $5 ATM fee in Spain. This was Feb 08.
yk is offline  
May 19th, 2008, 10:52 AM
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Thanks - and now I have some "real data".

brentp is offline  
May 19th, 2008, 11:40 AM
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Yes, you will be charged the $5 BofA fee using any ATM in Spain, so it is best to take out a few more euros per transaction. If this is your first time using the ATMs in Spain, then you can ask your bank to reverse the fee and see what happens.

There are no fees when using your card in a Barclays ATM's in England. The same is true if you use a Banque Paribas ATM in France.

One other thing to consider when using a BofA credit card is their fee for foreign transactions. The compounded rate is in excess of 1.5%, depending on the value of the transaction. The smaller the transaction, the higher the rate.
Robert2533 is offline  
May 19th, 2008, 04:41 PM
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Can't say anything about Spain, but I did use a Deutsche Bank ATM with my BOA card in Lisbon, Portugal over Christmas.

Even with Advantage Checking, I was double-zapped both the $5 and the 1.5%. When I returned back to the US, I complained and asked for my $10 (I used 2 DB ATM's) back stating that (1) it was Deutsche Bank which is a BOA partner, and (2) that I have Advantage Checking. Maybe the teller was in a good mood, because not only did I get the $10 back, I also got the 2x 1.5% charges back as well.

(After checking BOA's website, I found out that none of Advantage's advantages is free foreign ATM use. Oh well, BOA has charged me enough over the years. Oh well, so I got some of my own money back.)
tdyls is offline  
May 19th, 2008, 04:58 PM
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There will be no charge if you use a Deutschebank ATM in GERMANY, but there will be if you use one in a different country. Same with Barclay's -- you avoid the fee ONLY if using a Barclay's ATM in the UK -- not in other countries.

Robert's comments regarding the 1.5% relates to BofA credit cards, I believe and NOT to BofA ATM or debit cards for ATM withdrawals. And while I was charged (a line item on my statement) 1% for ATM withdrawals, the rate seemed to always be 1% below the XE rate -- the rate that was used by my other credit cards, so that seemed to totally offset the charge. Meanwhile I have an Advantage BofA account, and there has been some talk that because of that I got that 1% discounted rate -- that will probably not apply to all BofA accounts. As an advantage account holder I also get two "free" ($5 fee waived) ATM withdrawals from non partner bank each month.
NeoPatrick is offline  
May 19th, 2008, 05:18 PM
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Just so we understand, . . .

I am very aware of BofA's stated ATM usage fees with Global alliance partners. Have used this service in UK a number of times.

I'm asking for direct recent experience because I have found a number of older posts on various travel forums that indicated use of the 2 referenced banks in Spain may not have the fees applied. Obviously - this is no longer the case.

Thanks again to those that provided me with the answer I am looking for.
brentp is offline  
May 19th, 2008, 05:44 PM
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Yes it is true that BofA used to waive the fees with partner banks in foreign countries. They did mine at Deutschebanks in Italy and Parabis banks in Spain as recently as 2006, but it seemed to change in 2007. Sorry I can't speak for more recently, but I'd be totally dumbfounded if they reversed it back again and are once again not charging the fees.
NeoPatrick is offline  
May 19th, 2008, 06:10 PM
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One other point about the BofA debit card - there is a 3% conversion fee for all check card purchases (point of sale). This is the same fee as the credit card. This fee is recent - did not get this charge a year ago in France when using the debit card. The fee is still 1% for Advantage customers making an ATM withdrawal.
blh is offline  
May 19th, 2008, 06:14 PM
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>I'd be totally dumbfounded if they reversed it back again and are once again not charging the fees.<

Yes, they are charging the fee. Got the $5 plus %fee on my withdrawal from Deutsche Bank in Italy.

Does anyone know why a partner bank is not a partner bank if it's not in its "original" country (e.g., Deutsche Bank in Germany is, in Italy is not)?

OP: Sorry to hijack, was just wondering about this.
shelly_m is offline  
May 19th, 2008, 06:39 PM
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Because it's a good excuse for them to charge extra?
NeoPatrick is offline  
May 19th, 2008, 08:26 PM
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B of A does not speak to Swiss banks, so I got zapped.

To add injury to insult, I knew in advance about the situation. So I opened an account at a local Federal credit union that issued my a Master Card debit/check card with all the right names on the back: PLUS and Star.

Much to my disgust, the credit union card did NOT work at any bank I could find in Switzerland. Moreover, it failed a couple of times in Scotland but I finally found a bank where it would enableme to withdraw money.

Fortunately we were in the Edinburgh airport and at least 3 different banks had ATMs there in a cluster. No Barclays, however.

This year I am toting a Fidelity Investments check/debit card bearing the Visa symbol and a a bunch of network logos on the back. If this one will not work, then I will have to eat another couple of $5.00 fees.

One would hope that a huge firm like Fidelity would not issue a turkey of a debit card!!!
bob_brown is offline  
May 25th, 2008, 08:45 PM
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We used a BofA atm card in 2006 all over Australia and NZ at their global partner Westpac bank with no ATM fees. Last October we wanted to use it at Deutsche Bank in Italy and wre told it had to a branch in Italy.

You MUST ask before you travel because the rules don't always apply.

We ended up opening another account with Chase in order to withdraw from atm's in Italy. Sometimes you just have to be a little creative.
itchyfeet5 is offline  
May 25th, 2008, 10:47 PM
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We just returned (May 1st) and were charged on withdrawals from BBVA and Banco Populair in Spain. I called the foreign money (or whatever they call it) office at BofA and asked which banks they had a agreement with in Spain, as I'd used BNP Paribas in France. Answer: no similar agreement in Spain.

We were charged 3 euros by the Spanish banks and $5 by BofA.
Iwan2go is offline  
May 26th, 2008, 12:48 AM
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BofA is being rude.

Westpac is part of the same alliance and we can access ALL ATMs of the participating banks at no cost.

Westpac NZ: New Zealand
Westpac Pacific Banking: Fiji, Vanuatu, Cook Islands, Samoa, Tonga, PNG, Solomon Islands
BNP Paribas: France
Deutsche Bank: Germany, Spain, Italy, Poland
Barclays Bank: UK* , Africa* , Spain, France, Portugal and Gibraltar (I used Barclays in Tanzania)
ABSA: South Africa
Bank of America: USA
ScotiaBank: Canada, The Caribbean, Mexico, Chile

THe funny thing about Barclays is that it's only valid in England, not Scotland and the rest of the UK.
Sarvowinner is offline  
May 26th, 2008, 04:41 AM
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IWan2Go, are you sure you were charged by the Spanish banks? This is the first time I've ever heard of any European bank charging you for using their ATM. I have read over and over that it is illegal to do so. This would be a brand new thing if they really did. Are you sure the three euros wasn't part (or all) of the currency exchange rate that BofA charges in addition to the $5?
NeoPatrick is offline  
May 26th, 2008, 07:05 AM
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Deutsche Bank uses the same policies as Westpac for it's customers. Looks like only BoA is different.
logos999 is offline  
May 26th, 2008, 07:08 AM
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To answer NeoPatrick's question, I don't know. The charges on my BofA account are $4.69, which I interpreted as 3 euros, and $5.00. Whether it was the Spanish bank or the Bank of America, i cannot tell.

I never tried Barclay's, as that name was not given to me by the BofA. Wish it had been. Then again, I only withdrew money 3 times, so it's not a significant portion of my trip expenses.

Next time I'll try Barclay's.
Iwan2go is offline  
May 26th, 2008, 07:15 AM
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Well according to a British friend of mine who banks at Barclay's in London, BofA doesn't charge him anything when he withdraws money from a US ATM, but Barclay's does charge him for using it. Is that not true? And others here have said that their own European banks always charge them for all ATM withdrawals. If a German uses his Deutschebank card in a US ATM, does he not have to pay his bank a fee for doing so (partner bank or not)?

IWan2Go, I'm willing to bet that $4.69 charge on your statement is the 1% for currency exchange and NOT a charge made by the Spanish Bank.
Did you happen to withdraw around 300 euros? If so, that would certainly explain a charge of 3 euros (1%). And Barclay's only works for BofA customers in the UK.
NeoPatrick is offline  
May 26th, 2008, 07:30 AM
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>does he not have to pay his bank a fee for doing so

Not one lousy cent if it's a BofA ATM, it's always the interbank rate at that given moment.
logos999 is offline  

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