Today’s decision by all four big banks to abolish ATM fees is a historic win for consumers, according to leading comparison site RateCity.com.au.
In less than a day, the majority of bank ATM machines around the country are now fee-free.
The move could see up to half a billion dollars go back into the pockets of Australians.
Sally Tindall, money editor at RateCity.com.au, said the decision by the banks was propelled by people power.
“The court of public opinion has proved victorious,” she said.
“After years of campaigning against ATM fees, it’s incredible to see them wiped completely by the nation’s biggest banks in a matter of hours.
“Today’s decision has freed up approximately 11,000 ATMs across the country. The banks have done the right thing and should be congratulated for this.
“A person who uses foreign ATMs twice a week will now save over $100 a year if they withdraw money from a major bank’s cash machine.
“Two dollars might seem like small change when you need some cash quickly, but over the course of a year it can really add up,” she said.
A RateCity.com.au survey of over 1,000 people found that one in three Australians used foreign ATMs, with women and young adults the main culprits.
“Nearly 40 per cent of women pay ATM fees, compared with just 27 per cent of men,” she said.
“Millennials are also willing to fork out for convenience, with 40 per cent admitting to using the wrong ATMs, compared to just 27 per cent of boomers,” said Ms Tindall.