End of debit cards for me

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MnD
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End of debit cards for me

Post by MnD »

Other than ATM's (a couple a month) I've used my debit card for purchases twice in the last 12 months. I use credit cards for everything.
I think in both cases I had left my full wallet at home, grabbed my debit card to get some cash and also ended up making a small purchase on that errand.

So this morning, with my debit card safe in my wallet I have a Walmart debit purchase for almost $700 pending. No-one in our household has made a purchase at Walmart in years and yet the bank fraud detection did not flag the charge or contact me. After me calling them they indicated another transaction for $300 was declined and yet my card had not been locked down until I called. My available bank balance is now reduced by $700, my card is unusable, they will not expedite a new card other than regular mail so it may or may not arrive by the day we leave for Hawaii.

And the kicker - I cannot file a dispute on the $700 charge and have the charge credited to my main checking account _until_ the pending charge clears from Walmart and becomes an actual charge. Then i have to call back and file a dispute.

I'm going to have a nice vacation but when I get back the bank is either going to issue us ATM cards only or I am going to take my 6 accounts with that bank elsewhere.

The last time something similar happened with my credit card a couple years ago the fraud detection team called me within minutes of an unusual pending charge, they had already locked the card, the charge was reversed immediately when I verified it was fraud and my replacement card arrived in less than 24 hours UPS overnight. And of course none of my money was involved or put on hold. What a difference!
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powermega
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by powermega »

This is exactly why we never use our ATM/debit card for anything but ATM withdrawals. It's a matter of time before your card number gets stolen, and getting your primary checking account impaired is FAR more of a hassle than getting a credit card account impaired. One of our credit cards gets fraudulent charge about once every three years. It's just a matter of time before it happens again.
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Toons
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by Toons »

This is exactly why we never use our ATM/debit card for anything but ATM withdrawals

Same here,when I do use it. :happy
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mptfan
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by mptfan »

powermega wrote:This is exactly why we never use our ATM/debit card for anything but ATM withdrawals.
I agree.
mptfan
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by mptfan »

MnD wrote: The last time something similar happened with my credit card a couple years ago the fraud detection team called me within minutes of an unusual pending charge, they had already locked the card, the charge was reversed immediately when I verified it was fraud and my replacement card arrived in less than 24 hours UPS overnight. And of course none of my money was involved or put on hold. What a difference!
What a difference indeed. If there is a fraudulent charge on your credit card, none of your money is on hold, but with a debit card, it is your money that has been taken and is being held and you have to deal with the hassle and paperwork and delays involved with getting your money back, and it is you that have to deal with the possibility that other payments or withdrawals from your checking account will be affected. No thanks, I am not interested in taking those chances every time I make a purchase. These risks are entirely overlooked by those who advocate using debit cards for purchases in order to avoid using credit.
Last edited by mptfan on Sat Feb 20, 2016 10:26 am, edited 2 times in total.
MandyT
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by MandyT »

Toons wrote:This is exactly why we never use our ATM/debit card for anything but ATM withdrawals

Same here,when I do use it. :happy
Unless you have your card set to be ATM only, I don't understand how not using it for debit purchases protects you from debit fraud.
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dodecahedron
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by dodecahedron »

powermega wrote:This is exactly why we never use our ATM/debit card for anything but ATM withdrawals.
That is why I have explicitly required my bank to issue me an ATM card with no debit privileges.

Besides, why would I want to use a debit card when I have rewards credit cards that pay me generously for using them! (5.25% on gas, 3.5% on groceries, 2.625% on everything else.)
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dm200
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by dm200 »

MnD wrote:Other than ATM's (a couple a month) I've used my debit card for purchases twice in the last 12 months. I use credit cards for everything.
I think in both cases I had left my full wallet at home, grabbed my debit card to get some cash and also ended up making a small purchase on that errand.
So this morning, with my debit card safe in my wallet I have a Walmart debit purchase for almost $700 pending. No-one in our household has made a purchase at Walmart in years and yet the bank fraud detection did not flag the charge or contact me. After me calling them they indicated another transaction for $300 was declined and yet my card had not been locked down until I called. My available bank balance is now reduced by $700, my card is unusable, they will not expedite a new card other than regular mail so it may or may not arrive by the day we leave for Hawaii.
And the kicker - I cannot file a dispute on the $700 charge and have the charge credited to my main checking account _until_ the pending charge clears from Walmart and becomes an actual charge. Then i have to call back and file a dispute.
I'm going to have a nice vacation but when I get back the bank is either going to issue us ATM cards only or I am going to take my 6 accounts with that bank elsewhere.
The last time something similar happened with my credit card a couple years ago the fraud detection team called me within minutes of an unusual pending charge, they had already locked the card, the charge was reversed immediately when I verified it was fraud and my replacement card arrived in less than 24 hours UPS overnight. And of course none of my money was involved or put on hold. What a difference!
Yes - that is annoying that you cannot file the dispute until the charge clears as actual.

This kind of problem is sometimes (perhaps often) a family member or household member that used the card. The good news is that when these charges are caught early, you will not have a monetary loss.
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HueyLD
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by HueyLD »

dodecahedron wrote:That is why I have explicitly required my bank to issue me an ATM card with no debit privileges.

Besides, why would I want to use a debit card when I have rewards credit cards that pay me generously for using them! (5.25% on gas, 3.5% on groceries, 2.625% on everything else.)
Because one may need to withdraw cash from an ATM that is not owned by his/her bank.

Because one may need to withdraw cash from an ATM in a foreign country.

Some well known debit cards reimburse all ATM transaction fees and foreign transaction fees.
mptfan
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by mptfan »

dodecahedron wrote: That is why I have explicitly required my bank to issue me an ATM card with no debit privileges.
I used to have an ATM card that was just an ATM card, i.e., it did not have a VISA logo and was not connected to the VISA payment system and could not be used for purchases. Then my credit union sent me a new card that did have a VISA logo on it and I called to tell them I did not want a debit card that can be used for purchases, I only want an ATM card that can be used at an ATM machine and nothing else. They told me that they could not do that, all of their ATM cards are debit cards that are connected to the VISA system, and I did not have the option to get just an ATM card anymore.
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goingup
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by goingup »

Sorry for that hassle right before your Hawaii vacation!

I stopped using my debit card for retail purchases after the Target breach. Having had several CC compromises, I didn't relish the thought of getting our checking account ransacked.

I think my card is actually an ATM card only as it has no Visa logo. It can still be used for most retail purchases but a PIN is required. I also like the fact that with my bank you can set up alerts that will email or text you when a withdrawal exceeds a pre-set dollar amount.
criticalmass
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by criticalmass »

MnD wrote:Other than ATM's (a couple a month) I've used my debit card for purchases twice in the last 12 months. I use credit cards for everything.
I think in both cases I had left my full wallet at home, grabbed my debit card to get some cash and also ended up making a small purchase on that errand.

So this morning, with my debit card safe in my wallet I have a Walmart debit purchase for almost $700 pending. No-one in our household has made a purchase at Walmart in years and yet the bank fraud detection did not flag the charge or contact me. After me calling them they indicated another transaction for $300 was declined and yet my card had not been locked down until I called. My available bank balance is now reduced by $700, my card is unusable, they will not expedite a new card other than regular mail so it may or may not arrive by the day we leave for Hawaii.

And the kicker - I cannot file a dispute on the $700 charge and have the charge credited to my main checking account _until_ the pending charge clears from Walmart and becomes an actual charge. Then i have to call back and file a dispute.

I'm going to have a nice vacation but when I get back the bank is either going to issue us ATM cards only or I am going to take my 6 accounts with that bank elsewhere.

The last time something similar happened with my credit card a couple years ago the fraud detection team called me within minutes of an unusual pending charge, they had already locked the card, the charge was reversed immediately when I verified it was fraud and my replacement card arrived in less than 24 hours UPS overnight. And of course none of my money was involved or put on hold. What a difference!
Just remember that most cards that are billed as ATM only actually are connected to the debit networks, e.g. STAR, NYCE, Pulse, which also process ATM transactions. So you (your card) can still make debit transactions at merchants supporting debit.

Also note that some stores (e.g. Wal-Mart) are now allowing debit purchases under $50 without a PIN (pinless PIN debit). And you won't have to worry about waiting for holds because PIN/Pinless PIN debit transactions process immediately with no pending holds.

What bank issued your card? Do they support lowering the PoS limit to 0?
Last edited by criticalmass on Sat Feb 20, 2016 10:35 am, edited 1 time in total.
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dm200
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by dm200 »

My available bank balance is now reduced by $700, my card is unusable, they will not expedite a new card other than regular mail so it may or may not arrive by the day we leave for Hawaii.
When this happened to me, the local branch (no charge) issued me a temporaty ATM/debit card immediately until the replacement card came in the mail a few days later.
freebeer
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by freebeer »

MandyT wrote:
Toons wrote:This is exactly why we never use our ATM/debit card for anything but ATM withdrawals

Same here,when I do use it. :happy
Unless you have your card set to be ATM only, I don't understand how not using it for debit purchases protects you from debit fraud.
'
Well how do you think fraudsters get card data? Generally, by hacking retailer systems; also, by colluding with sketchy retailers. If you have a debit card and only use it at the ATM of a reputable bank, you should be much less likely to be the vicitm of fraud.
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dodecahedron
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by dodecahedron »

HueyLD wrote:
dodecahedron wrote:That is why I have explicitly required my bank to issue me an ATM card with no debit privileges.

Besides, why would I want to use a debit card when I have rewards credit cards that pay me generously for using them! (5.25% on gas, 3.5% on groceries, 2.625% on everything else.)
Because one may need to withdraw cash from an ATM that is not owned by his/her bank.

I can do this with my B of A ATM only card and regularly do so--and B of A reimburses me for the alien ATM fees

Because one may need to withdraw cash from an ATM in a foreign country.

I can do this with my B of A ATM only card and have done so in the past, though my foreign travel has been limited

Some well known debit cards reimburse all ATM transaction fees and foreign transaction fees.
My B of A ATM card definitely reimburses all fees on domestic ATM transactions ever since I became Platinum Honors Preferred a few years ago. I don't know if they reimburse foreign transaction fees because I haven't traveled abroad since I became Platinum Honors Preferred, but I don't travel enough that it would make a difference to me one way or another.
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dodecahedron
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by dodecahedron »

criticalmass wrote: Just remember that most cards that are billed as ATM only actually are connected to the debit networks, e.g. STAR, NYCE, Pulse, which also process ATM transactions. So you (your card) can still make debit transactions at merchants supporting debit.
I don't believe this is true in my case, because I have occasionally swiped my B of A ATM card unintentionally out of absent-mindedness at POS registers (because it doesn't look all that different from my B of A credit card) and gotten an error message.
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midareff
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by midareff »

Toons wrote:This is exactly why we never use our ATM/debit card for anything but ATM withdrawals

Same here,when I do use it. :happy
+1 .. don't even carry it around.


Can't imagine why anyone would use that instead of a cash back credit card.
Lynette
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by Lynette »

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goingup
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by goingup »

midareff wrote:
Toons wrote:This is exactly why we never use our ATM/debit card for anything but ATM withdrawals

Same here,when I do use it. :happy
+1 .. don't even carry it around.


Can't imagine why anyone would use that instead of a cash back credit card.
I use my card at Costco, where the payment choices are only cash, check or AMEX. I shop there only a few times a year so I feel I'm not imperiling our checking account too much. :wink:
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dodecahedron
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by dodecahedron »

Every debit card has two limits, or sides of data, that your bank or credit union sets internally. One is the ATM side. The other is called the "point of sale" (POS) side. This POS side is the one that allows all transactions that are not at an ATM -- even ones that still require a PIN.

Your ATM side should always be active and enabled to track your current available balance. But your POS side can and should be set to zero and turned off entirely. It's just a matter of disabling the portion of the magnetic strip that accesses the debit function, leaving your card with only traditional ATM capabilities.

Bank of America, Chase and Wells Fargo all give you the option to turn off the POS function on your debit card upon your request. Citibank currently does not.
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by Broken Man 1999 »

I have never used a debit card as a debit card, as I prefer to charge if I'm using plastic in order to gain the 2% reward. So the last two times my credit union has sent debit cards, I have destroyed them, had the CU remove them from my account and had them issue an ATM only card.

Now I don't worry about having funds removed through fraud via debit cards. At least with a credit card your $$$$ aren't removed from your account, just fraud charges placed against your credit card account. Plus you have a decent window of opportunity to take care of getting the charges removed prior to your bill being due. Works for me.

And waiting for a transaction to become a charge isn't a big deal with credit cards, given the length of the billing cycle to correct. I understand why they wait as I'm sure plenty of mistakes are made. I know I have seen a pending charge just disappear plenty of times, as mistakes are caught and corrected. Sometimes I've built up a head of steam after seeing a charge I didn't make from a store that's closed over a weekend; I'm ready to do battle, only to see the charge disappear prior to store opening on a Monday and having a chance to discuss. All worked up for nothing!


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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by Spirit Rider »

HueyLD wrote:
dodecahedron wrote:That is why I have explicitly required my bank to issue me an ATM card with no debit privileges.

Besides, why would I want to use a debit card when I have rewards credit cards that pay me generously for using them! (5.25% on gas, 3.5% on groceries, 2.625% on everything else.)
Because one may need to withdraw cash from an ATM that is not owned by his/her bank.

Because one may need to withdraw cash from an ATM in a foreign country.

Some well known debit cards reimburse all ATM transaction fees and foreign transaction fees.
I have always had an ATM only card from my credit union (twenty years):
  • I can and have used it at other branded ATMs.
  • I used it extensively internationally including during a two year period I was working in Argentina
  • It reimburses ATM transaction fees. The 1% foreign transaction fee was not significant for the amount of cash I tend to get.
  • POS transactions a disabled and can not be enabled on this card. If you want POS transactions you must get their VISA branded debit card.
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timboktoo
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by timboktoo »

The number on my debit card was stolen a few times, just as it has been on my credit card. I just called Chase both times and their customer support handled the whole matter for me. It couldn't have been easier. If I remember correctly, Chase even gave me back the money immediately during their period of investigation and I had a new card delivered within a few days. It's annoying every time it happens, but it really was quite a non-event in the grand scheme of things.

As for rewards cards, I have one myself. I like it. And yet I do notice that I spend much more money with my credit card than I did when using cash. It could be just correlation and not causation, but it's still a significantly different number. It's also a very personal situation. Seeing the amount of cash left in my wallet makes me more cognizant of what I have spent. My psychological makeup is likely not the same as your own, though. I am weak when it comes to discipline.

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Thrifty1
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by Thrifty1 »

My bank has notified me that my debit card will be replaced with a chip card soon. I hope this will prevent fraudulent use in the future, as I use my debit card instead of cash these days. It is so convenient to not to have to carry cash.
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by letsgobobby »

dodecahedron wrote:
powermega wrote:This is exactly why we never use our ATM/debit card for anything but ATM withdrawals.
That is why I have explicitly required my bank to issue me an ATM card with no debit privileges.

Besides, why would I want to use a debit card when I have rewards credit cards that pay me generously for using them! (5.25% on gas, 3.5% on groceries, 2.625% on everything else.)
Inquiring minds want to know which card gives 2.625% on everything else?

As for me, we use our debit card all the time because we have a rewards checking account. By making 144 purchases per year averaging $5 each I earned about $400 from my bank in 2015. Ditto from my wife. I guess it is taking a risk. It would be more an inconvenience than an existential threat to us, so we let it go.
mcraepat9
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by mcraepat9 »

I refuse to use debit cards mostly for psychological reasons. Nobody gets to stick their hand into my bank account other than me.
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by stoptothink »

Broken Man 1999 wrote:I have never used a debit card as a debit card, as I prefer to charge if I'm using plastic in order to gain the 2% reward.
I've never actually used an ATM, not once in ~20yrs. Up until the last few months I had never actually used a debit card at all, for the same reason as you, but we moved and the local grocer which is very convenient (within walking distance, cheaper than alternatives) does not accept credit cards so I had to go into the brick & mortar and actually get a pin.
lump532
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by lump532 »

letsgobobby wrote:
dodecahedron wrote:
powermega wrote:This is exactly why we never use our ATM/debit card for anything but ATM withdrawals.
That is why I have explicitly required my bank to issue me an ATM card with no debit privileges.

Besides, why would I want to use a debit card when I have rewards credit cards that pay me generously for using them! (5.25% on gas, 3.5% on groceries, 2.625% on everything else.)
Inquiring minds want to know which card gives 2.625% on everything else?
I agree! What is this card you speak of?
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jimb_fromATL
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by jimb_fromATL »

Last year somebody -- a pair of professional thieves, one of whom was a pickpocket, we realized later -- stole my wife's wallet out of her purse.

Within about 15 to 20 minutes while we were still looking for it to see if she had accidentally left it in the car or someplace, we got two alerts via cellphone from Visa and Discover that they had detected fraud activity on those cards and had deactivated the cards. The thieves had charged for gas at two gas stations for enough gas to fill a big truck plus two 55 gallon drums.

We were not out a penny ever. If there had been a debit card, we'd be out that money and probably more for days if not weeks while the investigation was resolved that we hadn't just filled up our own 55 gallon drums with gas while gas was cheap.

Nowadays you can eventually get your money back most of the time for fraud activity on a debit card. But if the miscreants drained your bank account, you still won't be reimbursed for the late fees and interest that might accrue for checks and automatic debits that bounced while your checking account was depleted.

However, those new safeguards for debit cards have caused me to revise my recommendations of the past. I used to say the that best thing to do with a debit card was to cut it up into pieces, then stomp on the pieces. Nowadays with so much better safeguards in place, I do not feel that it is absolutely necessary to stomp on the pieces.

jimb
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dodecahedron
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by dodecahedron »

letsgobobby wrote:
dodecahedron wrote:
powermega wrote:This is exactly why we never use our ATM/debit card for anything but ATM withdrawals.
That is why I have explicitly required my bank to issue me an ATM card with no debit privileges.

Besides, why would I want to use a debit card when I have rewards credit cards that pay me generously for using them! (5.25% on gas, 3.5% on groceries, 2.625% on everything else.)
Inquiring minds want to know which card gives 2.625% on everything else?
B of A Travel Rewards See tfb's blog post for details. (Note that in order to qualify, you have to be a Platinum Preferred Honors account holder at BoA/Merrill, which is easily accomplished by holding $100K of Vanguard ETFs at Merrill Edge, which also gives me a ton of other benefits.) I charge just about everything I can to my BoA Travel Rewards (including my utility bills, medical insurance premiums, auto/home/umbrella insurance premium as well as regular spending) in order to maximize the value of the 2.625% rebate. The only exceptions to my "charge everything to BoA Travel Rewards" are groceries and gas, which I charge to my BoA Cash Rewards card (for the 3.5% and 5.25%) and the rotating quarterly categories of Discover 5% cash back bonus.
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Kenster1
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by Kenster1 »

lump532 wrote:
letsgobobby wrote:
dodecahedron wrote:
powermega wrote:This is exactly why we never use our ATM/debit card for anything but ATM withdrawals.
That is why I have explicitly required my bank to issue me an ATM card with no debit privileges.

Besides, why would I want to use a debit card when I have rewards credit cards that pay me generously for using them! (5.25% on gas, 3.5% on groceries, 2.625% on everything else.)
Inquiring minds want to know which card gives 2.625% on everything else?
I agree! What is this card you speak of?
There's a big Bogleheads thread about this:
viewtopic.php?f=2&t=150033

It involves bringing in substantial $$$ to Bank of America + Merrill Lynch Edge to get into this special program that provides additional perks.

I personally wouldn't bank with BofA but this Preferred Program would offer nice perks and a different set of customer service that could make it worthwhile.
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dodecahedron
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by dodecahedron »

Kenster1 wrote:
It involves bringing in substantial $$$ to Bank of America + Merrill Lynch Edge to get into this special program that provides additional perks.

I personally wouldn't bank with BofA but this Preferred Program would offer nice perks and a different set of customer service that could make it worthwhile.
Yes, I was already banking at BoA before this Preferred Platinum Honors thing came along. (There is a nearby branch where I had been doing business for years that used to be a regional bank that was taken over by BoA about ten years ago. Service has been great at my local branch before and after the takeover. But I get treated like a real VIP when I walk in now that I am officially branded as "Platinum Preferred Honors.") I have gotten about $4,000 worth of benefits in the past 18 months in one form or another. ($1,000 bonus for moving Vanguard ETFs in my Roth IRA to Merrill, $1,000 bonus for moving Vanguard ETFs in my taxable to Merrill, credit card bonuses described above, fee waivers on my checking, saving and HSA accounts, free safe deposit box, fee waivers and reimbursements of fees on alien ATM withdrawals, free checks and free wire transfers, and various random bonuses for using my credit card at merchants I patronize anyway.) Most of these benefits have been tax-free. The only thing that is not tax free is the $1,000 bonus for moving assets in taxable to Merrill. (The $1,000 bonus for moving Roth assets was tax-free and went into my Roth.)
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Kenster1
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by Kenster1 »

I do use a mix of Debit and Credit cards but I don't keep much cash in the Checking account tied to the Debit card - I use it for small petty purchases.

You don't have to use a single Checking account either - I use another Checking account that's not tied to a debit card used for retail transactions and is stored away. I keep money here in this 2nd Checking account for payment transactions requiring ACH type payments for things such as Mortgage, etc. and the occasional Checks I need to write.
Last edited by Kenster1 on Sat Feb 20, 2016 1:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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dratkinson
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by dratkinson »

You might be able to use a CC for ATM access.

I wanted an ATM card for after-hours access to CU savings account (1st-tier EF). Problems: (1) didn't want a debit card for noted security issues and (2) ATM-only card came with annual fee.

Branch manager said their Visa-branded CC could be used as ATM card, but it had to be connected to a checking account. So I opened a $zero balance free checking account and received a CC and PIN for ATM access. Keep both CC and PIN letter in filing cabinet until needed.

Unexpected benefit. My savings statement was only mailed quarterly, but combined savings/checking statement is mailed monthly, which allows me to keep better tabs on savings as its used as a distribution target.
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by Fallible »

timboktoo wrote:The number on my debit card was stolen a few times, just as it has been on my credit card. I just called Chase both times and their customer support handled the whole matter for me. It couldn't have been easier. If I remember correctly, Chase even gave me back the money immediately during their period of investigation and I had a new card delivered within a few days. It's annoying every time it happens, but it really was quite a non-event in the grand scheme of things.
This is experience similar (a few had no problems) to those of people I know who've had debit cards for some years and that, along with understanding how they work and what to do if/when there are problems, made me decide to get one a couple years ago for convenience and limited use. No theft so far, but past performance...
As for rewards cards, I have one myself. I like it. And yet I do notice that I spend much more money with my credit card than I did when using cash. It could be just correlation and not causation, but it's still a significantly different number. It's also a very personal situation. Seeing the amount of cash left in my wallet makes me more cognizant of what I have spent. My psychological makeup is likely not the same as your own, though. I am weak when it comes to discipline.
I've never had a major credit card, have been retired many years, and except for minor inconveniences, have not needed one (and yes, credit score is excellent). I may, as credit cardholders often tell me, be leaving money on the table, but no one can say how much money I've saved over those many years by not having one.
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Kenster1
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by Kenster1 »

dodecahedron wrote:Yes, I was already banking at BoA before this Preferred Platinum Honors thing came along. (There is a nearby branch where I had been doing business for years that used to be a regional bank that was taken over by BoA about ten years ago. Service has been great at my local branch before and after the takeover. But I get treated like a real VIP when I walk in now that I am officially branded as "Platinum Preferred Honors.") I have gotten about $4,000 worth of benefits in the past 18 months in one form or another. ($1,000 bonus for moving Vanguard ETFs in my Roth IRA to Merrill, $1,000 bonus for moving Vanguard ETFs in my taxable to Merrill, credit card bonuses described above, fee waivers on my checking, saving and HSA accounts, free safe deposit box, fee waivers and reimbursements of fees on alien ATM withdrawals, free checks and free wire transfers, and various random bonuses for using my credit card at merchants I patronize anyway.) Most of these benefits have been tax-free. The only thing that is not tax free is the $1,000 bonus for moving assets in taxable to Merrill. (The $1,000 bonus for moving Roth assets was tax-free and went into my Roth.)
Oh I think you got lucky - you had a good branch purchased by BofA and perhaps the same customer service remained in tact. Did most of the employees at the branch remain in place after BoA took over? If so - that would've really helped.

Nationally - BoA gets some of the lowest ratings for customer service - they tend to end up in the lower tier. But this is based on the standard customer service including the standard customer phone service. Platinum/Preferred customers are in a different ballgame with access to a different set of 'red carpet' service.

Now - this didn't apply to you - but don't forget that years ago after the economic downturn (around 2011 I think) BoA outraged many customers by instituting a $5 debit card usage monthly fee if you had less than $x amount of money (I think it was $5,000) - and prompted lots of articles about them being the most hated bank in the US - and many customers threatening to leave. They have since scraped that but you get the idea of the type of fees they have drummed up in the past.

BoA was also fined and settled for foreclosing on Active-Duty troops:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/0 ... 02886.html

But nevertheless - those in the Platinum/Preferred service should be in good hands as they get some nice additional banking and reward perks + different premium 'red carpet' customer service.
Last edited by Kenster1 on Sat Feb 20, 2016 1:06 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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C4NT
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by C4NT »

dodecahedron wrote:...you have to be a Platinum Preferred Honors account holder at BoA/Merrill, which is easily accomplished by holding $100K of Vanguard ETFs at Merrill Edge, which also gives me a ton of other benefits.)...
Only on this site is this easily done. (Bold and color added by me.)
mptfan wrote:
powermega wrote:This is exactly why we never use our ATM/debit card for anything but ATM withdrawals.
I agree.
I also agree, which prompts me to add that this is another area in which Dave Ramsey is quite wrong. He often states that there are no differences between a debit card and a credit card. There is a HUGE difference between getting fraudulent charges on a CC versus having money fraudulently taken from your checking account via debit card fraud. Imagine the mess if a sizable amount of money was taken out right before your mortgage payment was about to post. Yeah, you will likely be made whole but it would be a headache. I've had fraudulent charges on my CC two times and each time the CC company notifies me right away and the only hassle was updating the new CC number on automatic billing things like Netflix.
edge
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by edge »

Whenever the bank tried sending me a debit card I told them to send me an ATM card only.

There are no good reasons to use/have a debit card unless you have spending/debt issues/problems.
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by JGoneRiding »

I use atm cards almost never. So rarely in fact I am surprised using them at all.doesn't trigger an alert!

Thay said just recently the issue was scammer devices in a bank atm.machine here in town!
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pennstater2005
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by pennstater2005 »

If you shop at Aldi what do you use? Cash? That's the only place I use my debit card and I don't like doing it.
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beyou
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by beyou »

For my two checking accounts, I insisted banks give me ATM only cards, no Visa/MC debit cards.

I did open separate checking accounts for my kids to keep small balances, so they have their "Visa"
for small purchases as well as ATM. Not that I am comfortable with their safety, but since I keep small
balances there and do not use those accounts for day to day bill payments, no much downside risk.
Eventually when the kids have a good credit record, they will get credit cards of their own, and
I will advise them to avoid debit cards and insist a bank provide an ATM only card, as I do for my
primary bill paying accounts.
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dodecahedron
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by dodecahedron »

Kenster1 wrote:
Oh I think you got lucky - you had a good branch purchased by BofA and perhaps the same customer service remained in tact. Did most of the employees at the branch remain in place after BoA took over? If so - that would've really helped. Yes and the new ones who have come along recently seem pretty good too. There are a ton of banks nearby so there seems to be a lot of local competition for business, which keeps everyone on their toes.

Nationally - BoA gets some of the lowest ratings for customer service - they tend to end up in the lower tier. But this is based on the standard customer service including the standard customer phone service. Platinum/Preferred customers are in a different ballgame with access to a different set of 'red carpet' service. Yes, I think that is true. And I think I get special treatment because of longstanding relationship with the bank. My late husband and I had a business account there as well as personal accounts, they handled our payroll (very cost-effectively), and were extremely helpful when I was dealing with estate settlement issues. They also had great college student accounts for our daughters.

Now - this didn't apply to you - but don't forget that years ago after the economic downturn (around 2011 I think) BoA outraged many customers by instituting a $5 debit card usage monthly fee if you had less than $x amount of money (I think it was $5,000) - and prompted lots of articles about them being the most hated bank in the US - and many customers threatening to leave. They have since scraped that but you get the idea of the type of fees they have drummed up in the past. I agree that they have driven away a number of small account holders, whose interests are better served by credit unions. As for minimum balance requirements, I believe those have always been waived for anyone who had direct deposits of at least $250/month.

BoA was also fined and settled for foreclosing on Active-Duty troops:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/0 ... 02886.html I was not aware of this--I will look into this. Hopefully they have mended their ways. Edited to add: actually the article you linked said it was Capital One that was fined and settled. There is a reference to *one* person with a complaint against BoA but that case had not yet been adjudicated at the time the article was published.

But nevertheless - those in the Platinum/Preferred service should be in good hands as they get some nice additional banking and reward perks + different premium 'red carpet' customer service. Yes, it is clear that they are focusing on high net worth clients these days. They are certainly not making any money off me. It is hard to figure out what their business model is, but for the time being, I am staying put.
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by MandyT »

edge wrote:Whenever the bank tried sending me a debit card I told them to send me an ATM card only.

There are no good reasons to use/have a debit card unless you have spending/debt issues/problems.
My main checking account used to pay 1.99% interest up to $25,000 if you have direct deposit and make at least 10 debit transactions per month. Another benefit is rebate of fees from nonaffiliated ATM's. So far, it has been worth it, even though the interest rate was recently lowered to 1.11%. I used to spend some effort fiddling with how much money to keep in the checking versus the savings and I don't have to mess with that anymore.

If my debit card gets hacked, I may feel differently, but for now it makes sense to use it. (I also used it once to make a largeish purchase at Aldi.)
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by mickeyd »

Since we use our CC for all purchases, I don't make Debit card purchases. Only use the card for an occasional visit to the ATM.

One exception ~ My favorite liquor store (Spec's) gives up a 5% discount for Debit card use.
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by Broken Man 1999 »

JGoneRiding wrote:I use atm cards almost never. So rarely in fact I am surprised using them at all.doesn't trigger an alert!

Thay said just recently the issue was scammer devices in a bank atm.machine here in town!
Yep, ATMs and gas pumps. Wife had her debit card compromised last year either through a skimmer on the pump at a Shell station or by someone nearby. Supposedly someone parked nearby can intercept the wireless info flow from the pump unit to the station's equipment. At any rate the thieves charged $100 of gas at another Shell station, (harder to do today given the price of gas :D ) and $300 worth of groceries at Publix. No funds were withdrawn as she received an alert after the second use of her card at another Shell station and called our CU.
mickeyd wrote:Since we use our CC for all purchases, I don't make Debit card purchases. Only use the card for an occasional visit to the ATM.

One exception ~ My favorite liquor store (Spec's) gives up a 5% discount for Debit card use.
Well that is a very good reason in my book! :beer

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criticalmass
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by criticalmass »

Broken Man 1999 wrote:
JGoneRiding wrote:I use atm cards almost never. So rarely in fact I am surprised using them at all.doesn't trigger an alert!

Thay said just recently the issue was scammer devices in a bank atm.machine here in town!
Yep, ATMs and gas pumps. Wife had her debit card compromised last year either through a skimmer on the pump at a Shell station or by someone nearby. Supposedly someone parked nearby can intercept the wireless info flow from the pump unit to the station's equipment. At any rate the thieves charged $100 of gas at another Shell station, (harder to do today given the price of gas :D ) and $300 worth of groceries at Publix. No funds were withdrawn as she received an alert after the second use of her card at another Shell station and called our CU.
Are you sure those Shell purchases were gas? A common scam is to buy gift cards with stolen credit/debit cards. Buying these at gas and grocers can often delay fraud flagging.
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by fsrph »

MandyT wrote:
Toons wrote:This is exactly why we never use our ATM/debit card for anything but ATM withdrawals

Same here,when I do use it. :happy
Unless you have your card set to be ATM only, I don't understand how not using it for debit purchases protects you from debit fraud.
My bank only issues an ATM debit card. I only use it at an ATM. If the card is compromised it would have occurred at the ATM. I would presume most debit card fraud occurs thru merchants, open WiFi or using the debit card for Internet purchases.

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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by cricket49 »

I have a credit card with Chase and set a notification to alert me by phone of any charges over 1.00. I originally had the alert set for charges over 200.00 until my cc was hacked and Chase shut it down. The charges were small and less than 10.00 to three different merchants. Chase said the small charges triggered the card to be closed and sent to the fraud department. The crooks were checking the card to make sure it was active.

My debit card is with Schwab but they did not have a capability to notify me when transactions occur. However, I have MINT on my smartphone and review balances to all my accounts daily. It also details each transaction with my debit card so I can monitor them.
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MnD
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by MnD »

powermega wrote:This is exactly why we never use our ATM/debit card for anything but ATM withdrawals.
That's my usual practice as well.
It was used for a purchase only twice in the last year when for some reason I ended up being out to get cash without my other cards and made a spur of the moment purchase, the last debit purchase being many months ago and both were at legitimate major businesses. It also has a chip, yet was still hacked. I suspect the number was gleaned from non-bank ATM use - looking back I got cash at some ATM's in small retail locations.
My bank reimburses me for all non-network ATM charges, but I guess that's bad practice to use Brand X ATM machines even without charges.
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criticalmass
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Re: End of debit cards for me

Post by criticalmass »

MnD wrote:
powermega wrote:This is exactly why we never use our ATM/debit card for anything but ATM withdrawals.
That's my usual practice as well.
It was used for a purchase only twice in the last year when for some reason I ended up being out to get cash without my other cards and made a spur of the moment purchase, the last debit purchase being many months ago and both were at legitimate major businesses. It also has a chip, yet was still hacked. I suspect the number was gleaned from non-bank ATM use - looking back I got cash at some ATM's in small retail locations.
My bank reimburses me for all non-network ATM charges, but I guess that's bad practice to use Brand X ATM machines even without charges.
The chips won't start making a significant dent on fraud until the merchants start requiring them for cards that have chips. Right now, that's only at a few major chains like Walmart, Target, and Home Depot. But it will catch on in the next few years fairly rapidly, because the liability shift now makes the stores liable if they don't accept chips.

And yes, it is usually a good idea to use name brand ATMs at well traveled locations. Even then, always look for card skimming devices where you insert the card.
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