Bank Of America To Charge A $5 Monthly Debit Card Fee, This Is The Last Straw

I have been a Bank Of America customer since 2003 and while most folks have had major issues with them, I just never really have. But this latest bit of info is the last straw, I refuse to pay for the privilege to use my own money. For those of you that haven’t heard, starting next year Bank Of America will begin charging a $5 monthly fee for customers who make debit card purchases. Doesn’t matter how many times you use it and it also won’t matter whether you select “debit” or “credit” at the point of sale. The very fact that you swipe that card will incur you the fee. You can avoid the fee by only using the card at the ATM and there will also be certain customers with premium accounts that will be exempt from the charge as well.


BOA isn’t the only bank that has been toying with this idea but it is the first major bank to implement it for their customers. The new policy coincides with the enactment of all those consumer credit protection laws that limit the amount of erroneous fees that banks can charge consumers. The new laws will limit the amount of revenue that banks will be able to get from merchants. Starting this weekend, a cap on the fees banks can charge retailers every time customers swipe their debit cards will take effect. Before the laws were passed, banks were charging an average fee of 44 cents per transaction to transaction processors, the new laws now cap that fee at only 21 cents. This change is expected to cost the banking industry a significant amount of money and moves like this are a response to try to counter that lost revenue.

The bottom line in my mind is that this is ridiculous since debit cards were an invention of the banking industry to get people to use cash and checks less so that they could create the new revenue stream of collecting transaction fees from use of debit cards and lower overhead associated with the processing of cash and check transactions. In a lot of situations I can accept things as the “cost of doing business” but not this time. I am personally going to look at my banking options in terms of my debit card and more than likely move my money somewhere that doesn’t charge me to use a card that they pushed me to use in the first place so that they could create more revenue and lower overhead. This is one pass the cost down to the customer situation that I won’t stand for and I plan to respond by taking my debit card business somewhere else, perhaps one of my local credit unions.  I suggest you look into that as well and show banks that this kind of thing won’t be stood for. I can see it now, it’s the day before you get paid and your bank account is on E and then they hit you with the $5 which causes and overdraft for which you get charged another $35 fee. The truth is that the banks don’t NEED the revenue, its loss won’t put them out of business by any means, it’s just plain old greed.

To my fellow BOA customers, how do you feel about this move? Will you accept it as the price of doing business and pay it or will you move your business to another financial institution that doesn’t charge this ridiculous fee?


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