As more and more people across the country use prepaid cards as one of their everyday financial resources, traditional checking accounts and the fees associated with them been making headlines.
U.S. News & World Report recently published an article questioning the myth of “free” checking accounts. The facts contained in the article certainly raise serious questions about the free checking claim made by many banks and credit unions.
- Consumers paid $31.6 billion in overdraft fees in 2011
- Consumers paid $7.1 billion in ATM fees in 2010
- Many consumers pay for checks, maintenance fees, and debit card fees
The article offered the following tips to ensure you pay as little in fees as possible:
- Say no to monthly fees (mostly tied to maintaining minimum balances)
- Closely monitor your balance to avoid overdrafts
- Avoid ATM fees
- Don’t neglect interest
And while prepaid cards offer many consumers an extremely competitive product for the money, the article encourages consumers to investigate and understand the fees associated with a prepaid card.
Read the complete article here.