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What would make you switch banks?

Posted: 27 February 2018 10:36 am
News

For half of Australians, zero ATM fees is the most enticing factor for switching bank accounts.

Of all the perks offered by different transaction accounts, from cash back to in-store discounts, it's zero ATM fees that Australians still appear to be the most enticed by. A new survey of over 2300 consumers by finder found that 49% of Australians consider no ATM fees as the biggest motivation to ditch their current bank in favour of another.

Given the Big Four banks dropped ATM fees back in September 2017, and that several banks had already been offering free ATM usage to customers for years, it's interesting this is still the number one perk consumers are seeking. In fact, more consumers would switch banks for zero ATM fees than for a better interest rate on their money.

And it's not just older Australians who are fussed about ATM fees for withdrawing cash. In fact, 65% of Gen Ys would switch to a bank that offers free ATM usage, compared to just 24% of Baby Boomers. I feel this is quite surprising; I'm a Gen Y and I can't remember the last time I went to an ATM to get some cash out.

Despite ongoing competition and investment from the Big Four to offer digital wallets such as Apple Pay, Australians just don't seem to care about this as much. Only 14% of those surveyed said they'd consider switching banks to have Apple or Google Pay functional on their smartphones. Unsurprisingly, this is more of a priority for younger Australians, with 35% of Gen Z saying they would switch banks for a digital wallet service like Apple Pay. In comparison, only 2% of Baby Boomers would switch for this.

Online banking and better mobile apps is also more important to younger consumers, with 44% of Gen Z Australians saying they'd switch banks for a better digital experience, and 37% of Gen Y saying the same. However, only 7% of Australians aged over 59 would bother switching banks for this.

As well as ATM fees, Australians are not very impressed with foreign transaction fees charged when making overseas purchases either. Over a quarter of consumers would switch bank accounts to one that waived the foreign transaction fees. Younger Australians are more likely to switch banks to avoid these fees, perhaps because they are travelling more or purchasing things online from overseas more often than their parents.

If you're looking for a bank account that offers free ATM access anywhere in Australia, check out our hack for avoiding ATM fees here.

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