Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Cash through an ATM machine

When I was younger (ie: 16 years old with my first bank account), I got it into my head that I didn't like feeding cash through the ATM machine out front. If I wasn't standing there watching the teller count my bills, who was I to say they couldn't pocket a $20 and simply chock it up to the customer couldn't count? It didn't bother me any to go to the bank during normal business hours and deposit my cash that way. Besides: I could stand there and watch them do it.

A few days ago, when I explained to an acquaintance that I didn't deposit cash through an ATM machine, she looked at me like I had five heads. Said she never waited in line for a teller and always deposited $300+ through the ATM machine, and that it had a laser in there to verify that there's as much money in the envelope as you say there is. (?? Really? It distinguishes 20s from smaller bills? Or even 50s/100s??)

Am I seriously neurotic? I really don't plan on changing my behavior, because to me? It's just safe practice to watch someone while they handle your hard-earned cash. I don't know that I necessarily want to give technology more power over my life. (Kind of like I'm a little skeptical about the cars that can technically park themselves. Or vehicles equipped with lane-assistance; the kind that will correct the direction of the car if need be.)

I know many of us MilSpouses bank with USAA -- and since they don't have physical branch locations, everything must be mailed in ... cash included. I must say: I find all of you ladies brave souls; I'm a traditionalist that just has to have a physical branch location. Thus the reason we switched to BoA when NavyFed closed. (We thought about going with a small, regional FCU ... but then again ... we'll be PCSing, and it's been a pain in the ass to get his paychecks through DFAS routed to the new account. In fact, I'm almost positive he sent in the paperwork in October, and here we are 90 days later still waiting for the change.


  1. I worked at banks and credit unions for seven years. From my experience with ATMs, I'd use them for deposits, but never without an envelope. Also from my experience, the bank typically delegates the ATM job to someone who is trustworthy and more senior. I've never seen any discrepancy with an ATM more than $1 (NO COINS, people, NO COINS... they get ripped out of the envelope and inevitably lost).

    Of course, going to a teller is the best way anyway. You are dealing with a real person who is accountable for your transaction. Plus, you get to know those tellers, and that can be a very powerful thing! :)

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