ATM Cash Withdrawal to Become Costlier from Next Year: Free Withdrawal Limit, New Charges

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ATM Rule Change: All bank customers who have a debit or credit card will have to shell out more money in a few days while withdrawing cash from ATMs. This is because the Reserve Bank of India in a notification earlier this year said that withdrawal of cash across the country will get costlier if done through ATMs after the prescribed limit for the customer in banks gets exhausted. The central bank in its notification had said that customers will have to pay even more charges from January 2022 for ATM transactions once the limit exceeds. Banks have already been notifying customers about the ATM rule change as the date nears.

The change will be implemented from January 1, 2022 for all bank customers, according to the RBI notification. Once this new rule comes into effect, a credit or debit card holder will have to pay Rs 21 per transaction once the withdrawal limit exceeds. Currently, a bank customer pays Rs 20 per transaction if the same situation arises. The Reserve Bank of India allows all bank customers to do five free ATM transactions at their own banks before these rates are charged.

The Reserve Bank of India has said that the customers will be eligible for five free transactions, including cash and non cash transactions, at their own banks. Apart from this, they will be eligible for three free transactions from other banks in metro cities (including  Bengaluru, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Delhi, and Hyderabad) and five free transactions in non-metro cities. The RBI had notified about the new changes in June this year.

What was said in the Reserve Bank of India’s June notification?

“Customers are eligible for five free transactions (inclusive of financial and non-financial transactions) every month from their own bank ATMs. They are also eligible for free transactions (inclusive of financial and non-financial transactions) from other bank ATMs viz. three transactions in metro centres and five transactions in non-metro centres. Beyond the free transactions, the ceiling / cap on customer charges is Rs 20 per transaction, as prescribed vide circular DPSS.CO.PD.No.316/02.10.002/2014-2015 dated August 14, 2014. To compensate the banks for the higher interchange fee and given the general escalation in costs, they are allowed to increase the customer charges to Rs 21 per transaction. This increase shall be effective from January 1, 2022,” said the Reserve Bank of India in a release dated June 10 this year.

“These instructions shall also apply, mutatis mutandis, to transactions done at Cash Recycler Machines (other than for cash deposit transactions),” added the central bank. It further said that  additional taxes will be payable on this amount.

Banks also have updated their websites notifying  about the rule change. “With effect from 1st January 2022, ATM transaction charge rate beyond free limit of Rs. 20 + taxes would be revised to Rs. 21 + taxes, wherever applicable,” says the HDFC Bank website.

“Effective 1st January 2022, financial transaction fee above the free limit in Axis Bank or other bank ATMs will be INR 21 + GST,” said Axis Bank in its website.

Why is the change happening?

The Reserve Bank of India had in 2019 constituted a committee that met and decided to bring in the changes. Under the chairmanship of the chief executive of the Indian Banks’ Association in June that year, the central bank decided to review the whole gamut f ATM charges and fees with a particular focus on interchange structure for ATM transactions, PTI reported.

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