Note: This article is part of our Basic Banking series, designed to provide new savers with the key skills to save smarter.
If you keep your money at one of the 20 largest banks in the country, your checking account will have a daily ATM withdrawal limit between $300 and $5,000.
There are pros and cons to being on either end, DepositAccounts founder Ken Tumin said.
“Larger withdrawal limits can be beneficial to consumers when they need a large amount of cash,” Tumin said. “However, larger limits do increase the risk that criminals will be able to steal a larger amount of money.” These criminals could be loitering around the ATM, waiting for you to withdraw cash.
Knowing specific bank ATM withdrawal limits can help you figure out which checking account is best for your circumstances.
Breaking down ATM withdrawal limits
We’ll review how these limits break down for the 20 largest banks in the nation. But keep reading, as we’ll also be covering some ways to increase your daily withdrawal limits for ATMs, either temporarily or permanently.
All limits in this table are for checking accounts offered by the financial institutions. When checking accounts at the same financial institution have different withdrawal limits for ATMs, the lowest and highest limit will be represented as a range.
|Bank||Daily ATM Withdrawal Limit|
|Bank of America||$1,500|
|Charles Schwab Bank||$1,000|
|Fifth Third Bank||$510|
|Goldman Sachs Bank USA||N/A|
|Morgan Stanley Bank||$1,500-$5,000|
|State Street Trust & Bank Co.||$300|
|The Bank of New York Mellon||$1,000|
|Wells Fargo Bank||$310-$2,010|
How to avoid ATM withdrawal limits
If you need cash beyond the withdrawal limits set by your financial institution, you can ask the bank to raise the limit. Most financial institutions are willing to do so at least temporarily.
There are situations where you may need to withdraw large amounts of cash on a regular basis. For example, you might have a child with special needs who has expensive health care requirements that must be paid for in cash. Those expenses may merit a higher daily ATM withdrawal limit.
Some banks, such as Wells Fargo, make the increase in your ATM withdrawal limit permanent. But most of their competitors’ increases will only last for a set amount of time, such as the two-day limit increases granted by State Street Trust & Bank Co. That means you’ll have to call back or visit a branch each time you want to boost your limit.
If you have been denied a limit increase, you still have other options. If you walk inside your local branch, any withdrawal you make does not count toward your daily limit. If possible, you could use your debit card to make a purchase rather than use cash, as daily debit purchase limits are usually far higher than daily withdrawal limits for ATMs.
FAQ: ATM withdrawal limits
Question: I have an ATM card through my savings account. Does that change my limit?
Answer: Your daily ATM withdrawal limit may be different on your savings account than it is on your checking account. In fact, these limits can vary from checking account to checking account, nonetheless savings.
When you have a savings account, you need to be aware of the number of times you withdraw money from your account during a billing period. Federal Regulation D mandates that convenient withdrawals must be limited to six per month on all savings accounts, and your financial institution must comply. If you want to make more than six withdrawals in any given month, you can look to more “inconvenient” options, which at some financial institutions include visiting a teller inside the branch rather than taking money out at the ATM.
Question: What’s the best way to find my daily ATM withdrawal limit?
Answer: If you’re considering opening an account based on its ATM withdrawal limit, you need to first find out what that limit is. While some financial institutions make this information easy to find on their websites, most do not. If you cannot find the information online, call your financial institution to find out what your daily withdrawal limit is and/or ask for an increase to your limit, allowing you to withdraw more cash.
Question: Will my daily debit purchase limit be different from my ATM withdrawal limit?
Answer: Yes. Typically, your withdrawal limit will be lower than your debit purchase limit. For example, those with checking accounts at The Bank of New York Mellon will only be able to withdraw $1,000 in cash on a single day, but the daily debit purchase limit is $5,000. Similarly, at US Bank, daily debit purchase limits are $1,000, but you can only withdraw $500 per day from an ATM if you don’t request a limit increase.
Question: If I get cash back at a store, does that count toward my ATM withdrawal limit?
Answer: When you get cash back at a store, it will not count toward your daily withdrawal limit. It will, however, count toward your debit purchase limit. Theoretically, that means you could get more than your daily withdrawal limit in cash by making small purchases at stores and opting for cash back.
However, most stores have relatively low limits on cash back. Maybe you can only take out $50 per transaction. By the time you make enough transactions to get the full amount of cash you need, you might as well have just called in or visited a branch to up your withdrawal limit. It’s less costly and far more convenient.