Question about ATM limits in Europe

Jul 20th, 2016, 05:19 PM
  #21  
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
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Your bank probably limits the amount you can withdraw and of course the foreign currency equivalent plus fees can reflect that. However I have seen variations depending on the bank operating the ATM machine too. In my experience HSBC sets a lower total limit than some others, well below my own bank's restriction. My bank will change the account limit upon request, even on a temporary basis. If you need a large amount, such as for an apartment rental, having accounts at separate banks is helpful as well as a safety measure.
Southam is offline  
Jul 20th, 2016, 05:45 PM
  #22  
 
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Peg, yes, I've had the same experience lately. Three weeks ago, in Binz, I requested 300 euros, the ATM told me I couldn't have 300, but did I want 200? So I got the 200. (I use a no fee credit union debit card. My backup card is WF with $5 fee plus 3% -- I was glad I didn't need to use it.)
This is the first time I have run into such a low limit from a bank ATM. Something new?? My credit union limit is definitely not that low.
travlsolo2 is offline  
Jul 20th, 2016, 09:11 PM
  #23  
 
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Hi Peg,

I think there are two things going on here.

One problem is, yes, your bank's limit on your withdrawals. Most banks will give you a limit to how much you can withdraw every day -- but you can always raise that limit. My bank used to limit me to $300 per withdrawal, but when I moved to Germany, I asked to have that limit raised so that I could withdraw my "living" money from my account at one time. They raised my limit to $1,000, and I've had that for the past 4 years.

Then, the local bank can limit the amount of money you withdraw, and I think that's just to ensure the machine doesn't run out of money. Though my bank's "limit" is $1,000, I always go over that amount and withdraw 1000€ on the first of every month. That's the most the ATM will allow me to take out. Imagine if everyone went to withdraw 1000€ from the ATM -- it would run out of money pretty quickly. There are some ATMs in town that only allow a withdrawal of 300€. I know it's the ATM and not my bank because I can withdraw the full amount at other ATMs.

Have fun as you think it all over!

s
swandav2000 is offline  
Jul 20th, 2016, 09:12 PM
  #24  
kja
 
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IME, there are limits imposed on daily ATM withdrawals by my banks -- and not only do the limits vary, but in addition, my banks differ in how, specifically, they define a day. So one of my banks allows me to withdraw up to $350 a day, and another allows up to $500 a day. One bank I use counts its days starting from 4 p.m. eastern; another counts them starting at midnight eastern, etc.

Banks also differ in what (if anything) they charge, and there are two different types of charges to consider: a flat fee for each use of the card and a currency conversion fee. I avoid cards with these charges.

And yes, I have encountered some ATMs that charge an additional flat fee -- but not if I find one that is part of the network (e.g., Cirrus) to which my bank belongs. And I have encountered ATMs that put a maximum limit on withdrawals that is lower than what my bank allows, in which case I can withdraw more within the stated "day" from a different machine.
kja is offline  
Jul 20th, 2016, 09:30 PM
  #25  
 
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And often the "local" limit is per withdrawal, not per day, so you can just make back-to-back withdrawals instead of finding another machine.
thursdaysd is offline  
Jul 20th, 2016, 09:31 PM
  #26  
kja
 
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@ thursdaysd -- nice to know!
kja is offline  
Jul 21st, 2016, 04:59 AM
  #27  
 
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My German bank card allows me up to 1000 € per withdrawal at German ATMs, so it must be your bank that sets the limit. I can withdraw only once per day, though.
quokka is offline  
Jul 21st, 2016, 07:31 AM
  #28  
 
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The amount of incomplete or bad information that pops up on threads like these is astounding.

"The ATM limit is more likely to be a function of your bank than of the European ATM."

"the "local" limit is per withdrawal, not per day, so you can just make back-to-back withdrawals instead of finding another machine."

"Echoing others: I believe that the "$" limit is coming from your bank."

Echoing others who don't know what they are talking about only creates a lot of useless, confusing noise.

If you use an ATM abroad to access cash, you better believe there are two or more limits:

1. Each bank ATM in Europe will have its own daily-withdrawal and/or per-transaction limit, set by the bank that owns the ATM. The per-transaction limit can have a broad range, depending on the bank you pick and its location. It is very common in certain corners of Italy to find a 200€ per-transaction limit. Sometimes, the only way to discover what the daily limit is, you'd need to make one-too-many 200€ withdrawal transactions from the same machine in a 24-hour period. This is not the behavior of an average tourist.

2. Your ATM card, given to you by your bank in the U.S., will also have its own daily (per 24 hours) withdrawal limit.

"Most banks will give you a limit to how much you can withdraw every day -- but you can always raise that limit."

No you can't. It totally depends on your bank, and their policies change regularly, thanks to terrorism and fraud. Several banks that used to offer the "raise" service for travelers no longer do. You need to check with your bank before each trip.

"I am really happy to hear how everybody is saving billions on their ATM withdrawals and then whining about the cost of a taxi in Europe."

Without mentioning anyone by name, god forbid you castigate whiners with such a broad brush. It's always funny to see who jumps for the bate and bites back. LOL.

"I would prefer to give my money to a taxi driver than to the bank."

Amen.
NYCFoodSnob is offline  
Jul 21st, 2016, 07:50 AM
  #29  
 
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WF refunds fees from other banks' ATMs, both domestic and international. Our WF credit card does not charge a transaction fee.
We are in Private Banking at Wells Fargo whatever that means.
HappyTrvlr is online now  
Jul 21st, 2016, 08:02 AM
  #30  
 
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https://www.wellsfargo.com/the-private-bank/

https://www.wellsfargo.com/

Two different products. Two different fee structures.

Fees for the most basic WF checking account:

https://www08.wellsfargomedia.com/as...day-Group1.pdf
thursdaysd is offline  
Jul 21st, 2016, 08:32 AM
  #31  
 
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NYCFoodSnob quoted: "the "local" limit is per withdrawal, not per day, so you can just make back-to-back withdrawals instead of finding another machine."

Incomplete.

I wrote: "And often the "local" limit is per withdrawal, not per day, so you can just make back-to-back withdrawals instead of finding another machine." Emphasis added.

If you are going quote, quote correctly. What I wrote is accurate.
thursdaysd is offline  
Jul 21st, 2016, 09:33 AM
  #32  
 
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The problem with just doing another transaction is that the OP's bank is charging $5 per withdrawal. Understandably that gets irritating -- an insult added to the injury of 3% conversion fees.

There are other options out there. I still keep my big bank accounts (use them for back up overseas) but for now I'm glad I made a switch to no fees for my travel money account.
Trophywife007 is offline  
Jul 21st, 2016, 09:35 AM
  #33  
 
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"I wrote: "And often"

I don't care how you phrased it, I still don't view you as an authority on the subject, therefore, I don't believe you possess the facts.

In my experience, frequently in search of ATMs that will give me 1000€ in a single day from a single source, those ATMs are no longer easy to find anywhere. I had one in a remote corner of Venice for many years, but they, too, changed their policy.
NYCFoodSnob is offline  
Jul 21st, 2016, 09:56 AM
  #34  
 
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@NYCFoodSnob - I really don't care how you view me (and let's not get into how I view you). But since my statement is based on personal experience, of course I possess facts. (Not sure any of us possess "the" facts.)

I can personally attest to the fact that I have been able to make back-to-back withdrawals from an ATM which had a local limit. Multiples times, in different countries.

If you choose not to believe me, too bad, but the OP may certainly do so.

@Trophywife007 - I entirely understand the OP's problem with per-transaction fees. It's why I suggested a bank with no fees.
thursdaysd is offline  
Jul 21st, 2016, 10:59 AM
  #35  
 
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thursdaysd, you talk out of the side of your mouth. Nobody said back-to-back withdrawals are not possible. Of course they are possible, and depending on the dollar amount, you can withdraw multiple times until you reach the bank's limit. For that behavior, the OP will incur serious fees.

Readers, unless you're testing the foreign ATM or you speak directly to the bank's rep, it's very difficult to know what each bank's daily limit is until you hit it. But I assure you, there will be a limit, contrary to someone's alleged experience stated here.
NYCFoodSnob is offline  
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