Limeguy out of control for post 171..

How old are you?  Here is a way to figure this question out. Do you remember a time when there were no ATMs? I do, I guess that makes me old. Back in the old days when you worked, you would get a paper pay check and then you would have to go to the bank and stand in line waiting for a teller so you could cash your paycheck. While you were having your turn with the teller you could deposit money or check your account balance. At this time there was no online banking. Heck, the internet was just being used by a few of the major universities.

Then the internet came along, and the banks got on the internet and they get networked. When the first ATM machines were introduced where we lived, they were touted as time savers for the customer. You could deposit money, withdraw money, transfer money and check your balance any time of the day without waiting in line for a teller. As young people we embraced the technology. The upside for the bank was the need for less tellers. Less tellers ment less salaries and greater profits. And the ATMs were working 24 hours – seven days a week.

Why are we walking down the memory lane of ATMs tonight? Good question, Virgina.  Here is the rub. We do business with TD Bank. Not by choice, by default. And, yes, I have been too lazy to change banks.  Our orignal bank was Commerce Bank. They built an empire in the Mid Atlantic and Florida by provide exceptional customer service. At some point about three years ago, they were bought out by TD Bank based in Canada. Ever since the purchase TD bank has changed all the rules in an attempt to generate more profits. 

The most recent change to our accounts was about a year ago when TD Bank informed us that we would have to use their ATMs or pay TD Bank 2.00 per transaction to use somebodies elses ATM machine.  Well, here in the Mid Atlantic, that must have cost the WAWA company huge money. The WAWA stores are convince stores. More and more of them sell gasoline as well. They have PNC Bank ATMs and don’t charge a fee if customers use the machines and are not PNC customers. WAWA figured that you would probably buy something with that money while you were getting the money out of the ATM. Not any more.

Commerce/TD Bank was the 800 lb gorilla of banks in the Mid Atlantic. I would guess 7 out of 10 customers using the PNC machines in a WAWA were TD Bank customers. Now we can not use those machines unless we want to pay 2.00 per transaction to get our money.  So I would guess that the TD Bank customers now go to their local TD Bank to use their ATM since they refuse to give TD Bank the 2.00 per transaction.  I am in that group. I will NOT give the bank my hard-earned money without a battle. 

When I have gone to the local TD Bank branches (Manahawkin and Wall) recently, of the maybe five times I have tried to use the machines, four of the times the machines were not working. This happened last night before my company Christmas party.  So follow this, the bank restricts the free usage of the ATM to their machines. They don’t provide any more machine (since we can’t use other machines for free, more if us will be using their machines) and the machines they have are not reliable.

When the machines don’t work you have two choices, go to the WAWA and pay the 2.00 per transaction or (wait for it) go into the branch, stand online for a teller to get you money. Pardon this (WTF), we have gone backwards? In the 1960 ‘s and 1970’s we stood inline for our money. Then machines were created to allow us 24/7 access (without a teller) to our money. Now in 2011 we are back to standing in line for our money. But if you want to pay them their fee, no need to wait. Hmmm.  Talk about a ruining a good, working, business model.  Maybe in 2012 I will be less lazy and change banks.

Sorry for the rant, I will file this one under things that bother me so.

I do have a picture to share with you tonight. This picture comes from December 28, 2003. Our children were at winter camp in the Catskills. DW and I were in New Orleans for the first time. We haven’t changed a bit since then.  This picture was taken on the St. Charles street car.  I might, repeat might, be a little grayer.


ST Charles Street Car 2003

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Christina
    Dec 18, 2011 @ 16:45:23

    We have gone backwards, I agree!


  2. john davitt
    Dec 20, 2011 @ 12:57:32

    Yeah. I avoid those fees the best I can. It is infuriating to pay sometimes $5($2.50 to the bank atm and 2.50 to my bank for not using their atm) to get out my own money.


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