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Can anyone tell me whether or not credit cards issued within the USA can be used in ATMs in the USA for the purpose of withdrawing cash? Or can only debit cards be used? If credit cards can be used, does it have to be any particular type of credit card or will every single one be able to withdraw cash from an ATM? I have seen in the past that some credit cards may not be used for that, so I just want to double check.

The second question I also have is: is the daily maximum ATM withdrawal cash limit (maximum cash you can withdraw within 24 calendar days, which includes Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays) defined as the "cash advance limit" or does it have any different definition?

  • 3
    One question per question please, although these are all better directed to your bank anyway. – Lightness Races in Orbit Apr 18 '17 at 13:06
  • It can be useful in a bind (I had to use a cash advance on a vacation abroad once because my debit wasn't supported), but be very aware of the large fees/interest. I believe my credit card had an interest rate of ~18% compounded DAILY. Needless to say, I immediately went online and paid off the cash advance from my checking account. – Chris G Apr 18 '17 at 18:20
  • I'm not 100% certain about this, so not posting it as an answer, but I believe the answer is simply: if you have a PIN for the credit card, then you can use it at an ATM to get a cash advance. If you don't, then you can't. – Dan Henderson Apr 18 '17 at 20:17
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Each ATM, the machine, belongs to one or more networks. Those networks work with multiple types of cards. Each card belongs to one or more networks. The overlap of the networks the machine belongs to, and the card belongs to determines if the card works and what fees and limits apply.

In general if the credit card belongs to one of the major networks (VISA, Master Card, American Express and Discover) you shouldn't have a problem finding a ATM that will give you a cash advance, or even a cash advance without an ATM Fee. Each credit card network should have a web interface to show you where the ATMs are that will work with the card. If it is a store credit card it still might belong to one of the major networks. If the bank that issues the card is local you can probably get a cash advance at the bank branch. Use the website to see if the ATM/Branch locations are convenient for you.

The actual limits are a function of the card type, and the credit limit that you have been approved for. In my experience the maximum amount of cash advance outstanding is half the credit limit, but you need to check with your card.

Keep in mind unless you have a special offer from the credit card company expect that there will be a fee charged by the credit card company for the cash advance, this is in addition to a fee charged by the ATM. Also remember that interest starts to accumulate on day one of the cash advance. It isn't like a regular purchase that might not be charged interest until the cycle closes and the payment is due. The documentation from the credit card company will describe all the fees and limits.

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    I was not aware that credit card companies charged a fee and automatic interest for cash advances. How typical is this? – Nosrac Apr 18 '17 at 11:30
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    @DanielCarson Both the cash advance fee and the interest with no grace period are very common. Check your own credit card; you probably have both. – Ben Miller Apr 18 '17 at 12:05
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    @Daniel: It seems to me that the automatic interest closes a loophole where somebody could keep paying one cards balance with another every month, indefinitely, without ever paying interest. A sort of "uber churn", if you will. – user48477 Apr 18 '17 at 14:13
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    @FighterJet this used to be pretty common when 0% balance transfers were more popular from credit cards. – enderland Apr 18 '17 at 17:39
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    Depending on the terms of your card, you can actually end up paying interest on your card's outstanding balance as soon as you make a single cash advance, even before the end of the usual "interest free" period. This can make cash advances extremely expensive. Make sure you understand exactly what you'll be charged, before you even think about doing this. – Dawood ibn Kareem Apr 19 '17 at 10:29
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You can generally withdraw cash from an ATM with a major credit card. There are exceptions of course, but generally yes.

It's a terrible deal unless you are in the most dire of straits. Avoid it. Credit card companies make money on purchases at a store from the store. If you pay late, they make money from you.

For an ATM, they make money by charging you a fee and then charging interest on day one with no grace period. This is a very high interest rate short term loan. You will also be charged a fee by the ATM itself - and you will pay interest on that fee!

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    With my credit card, there is additonal fee from the issuing bank for withdrawing money. A point worth stressing is that as opposed to paying for something with a credit card, where you have until the end of the month with the grace period on top to pay the debt back with no interest, the money you withdraw with a credit card from an ATM usually garners interest from day one. Withdrawals from the card to your bank account may have better terms (AFAIK better for my card, but I'm not sure -- I steer clear of that kind of service). – tomasz Apr 18 '17 at 16:46
  • In short, you'd better use a debit/atm card or card-less services for ATM withdrawal. – tomasz Apr 18 '17 at 16:49
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    Some people I know would deposit money into their credit card account before leaving on vacation (for example) and would withdraw that money using the card. Apparently that works without the associated interests and fees, though I've never tried it myself. – MetalMikester Apr 18 '17 at 19:03
  • @MetalMikester: You'd probably still would have the ATM fee, though. – MSalters Apr 19 '17 at 8:49
  • @MetalMikester I think that would only work on a card without a current balance, and in that case you may as well just use a debit card. – Dan Henderson Apr 25 '17 at 6:52
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Generally speaking, yes, you can withdraw cash from an ATM using your credit card. However, this is usually a terrible deal:

  1. You will be charged a fee by the ATM in the form of a net dollar amount. Usually between $2 and $5.
  2. You will be charged a fee by the credit card company in the form of a percentage of the transaction. Usually between 3% and 5%.
  3. You will be charged interest by the credit card company as soon as you take out the cash, meaning there's no interest-free grace period like the one you usually have on purchases.

Also, keep in mind that on top of the limit set by the ATM of the amount of cash you can withdraw, the credit card company also has its own "cash advance credit limit" that is usually lower than your regular credit limit for purchases.

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You can, but it doesn't mean you should. You don't actually "withdraw cash", the bank gives you a cash loan (called a "cash advance") on your card. It will be at very high interest (higher even than your credit card), and they'll also slap you with a bunch of flat fees. Also not all ATMs support it.

Better to just carry cash.

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Yes, you can. A friend of mine once did, don't know the reason why he was so foolish and couldn't use the debit card instead. I think maybe out of curiosity or he was drunk. But I know the consequences, the bank people asked him to pay all the previous debts relating to the card the same day or he was going to be paying alot of interest to them as a penalty. So, he did pay all the debts the same night.

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You can also take a major credit card to almost any bank, walk up to the counter, and take a cash advance there as well. Doing it at the counter will save you the ATM fee, though the bank may charge a processing fee so it could turn out more expensive.

protected by Nathan L Apr 20 '17 at 13:29

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