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Updated on Wednesday, June 3, 2020
You can easily deposit cash or checks at many ATMs, but not all. There are plenty of ATMs that do not accept deposits, or that won’t accept deposits if you bank with a different financial institution. Furthermore, there are banks, such as Ally Bank and Discover Bank, that do not allow cash deposits at all, regardless of whether they’re made at an ATM.
Don’t be discouraged, though – there are plenty of ATMs that do accept cash deposits. To successfully deposit cash at an ATM, here’s what you can expect as far as the process, any fees involved and commonly encountered issues.
- How to make cash deposits at an ATM
- What are the fees for ATM cash deposits?
- When will my money be available from an ATM cash deposit?
- What are the common problems of depositing cash at an ATM?
- Banks that provide the most flexible cash-deposit options
How to make cash deposits at an ATM
Once you’ve established that your bank accepts cash or check deposits at an ATM — whether in-network or out-of-network — it’s time to hunt one down. Many banks offer features on their website or mobile app that will show you in-network ATMs near you. Additionally, ATM networks like MoneyPass and AllPoint have features on their websites that allow you to search for nearby ATMs, filtering for only the ones that accept deposits.
After you’ve located a deposit-taking ATM, you can prepare to make your deposit. While ATM machines vary, in general, these are the steps you can expect to take when depositing cash or a check at an ATM:
- Insert your debit card and PIN code.
- Select “Deposit.”
- Choose the account you’d like to deposit your money into.
- Enter the amount of money you’re depositing, and insert your signed check or cash.
- Confirm the accurate dollar amount of your deposit.
- Answer any remaining questions and be sure to exit it out of the screen and back to the ATM homepage. Take your receipt and bank card with you before leaving.
Can I deposit money at an ATM that’s not my bank?
Whether you can deposit money at an ATM that is out-of-network with your bank depends on your financial institution’s policies. For context, banks that will only allow you to make deposits at ATMs in their network, and not others, include:
Many big banks will partner with an ATM machine network — like MoneyPass or Allpoint — allowing customers to make withdrawals surcharge-free from those ATMs. However, while your bank might allow you to make withdrawals at an ATM in its partner network, that does not mean it will also allow you to make deposits at those machines. You will first need to check with your financial institution.
When shopping around for a bank, do not assume that all ATMs will be able to accept your cash or check deposits. Instead, if being able to deposit cash at an ATM is important to you, make sure to ask whether the bank accepts cash or check deposits at its own network of ATMs, at partner network ATMs or at any ATMs at all.
How do you deposit cash at an online-only bank?
Without the accessibility of brick-and-mortar branches as a customer of an online-only bank, determining where you can make your cash deposits can be tricky. In many cases, online banks require you to deposit cash by transferring it from another bank account via ACH transfer. There are a handful of banks, though, that accept deposits at a network of ATMs, including Radius Bank and Capital One 360.
Other common ways that online-only banks accept deposits include:
- Direct deposit
- Remote check deposit via mobile app
- Wire transfers
- Mailed check
- Via cash registers at retail locations through partner programs (such as Chime Bank’s partnership with Green Dot’s At the Register)
What are the fees for ATM cash deposits?
Many banks do not charge a fee specifically for making deposits at ATMs — although if you have a business checking account, cash deposit fees (in general, not at ATMs) are par for the course.
However, you should keep in mind that ATM machines are notorious for charging a bundle of fees that can be tricky to unpack. General ATM fees that you should be aware of include:
- ATM operator’s fee: If you’re using an ATM that is out of your bank’s network, you might be charged a fee by the company or bank that owns the machine. These fees can range from $1.50 to $10 per transaction.
- Non-network fee charged by your bank: If you use an ATM that is outside of your bank’s network, your own bank might tack on a fee that can range from $2.00 to $3.50.
When will my money be available from an ATM cash deposit?
While funds you deposit at an ATM are not required to be immediately available, deposited cash will likely be available right away. Checks, on the other hand. might take one business day to become available.
Check or deposit holds, though, are common, and can last from one to 11 days. Holds can be triggered for many reasons, and are put in place to make sure there are enough funds to back up a transaction. In fact, making a deposit at an ATM outside of your bank’s network can be a reason in itself for triggering a deposit hold. If you want to avoid a hold, consider making your deposit in person, if possible.
If you find yourself facing a deposit hold after depositing cash at an ATM, rest assured the Expedited Funds Availability Act puts limits on how long banks and credit unions can wait to give you access to your cash.
What are the common problems of depositing cash at an ATM?
Depositing cash at an ATM isn’t always the most effective way to get your banking business done. Downsides of depositing cash at an ATM include:
- There are safety concerns. Before pulling out a wad of cash in public, make sure you are in a well-lit area, keep your cash out of plain view and safeguard your PIN code.
- It might take longer to receive your funds. As noted earlier, depositing cash at an ATM — especially an out-of-network ATM — can trigger a longer hold time on your deposit.
- There could be limited availability. Options of deposit-taking ATMs in your network can be slim, and finding one nearby might be a cumbersome process.
Banks that provide the most flexible cash-deposit options
If being able to deposit cash at an ATM is high on your priority list, below are a few banks worth exploring. The banks below all boast large ATM networks that accept cash deposits, giving customers a plethora of options to choose from. You can also check out our picks for the best checking accounts with no ATM fees.
|Bank||ATM Deposit Policy|
|Capital One||Allows customers to deposit cash at over 39,000 Capital One or AllPoint ATMs, as long as it’s an ATM that takes cash|
|Radius Bank||Allows customers to make deposits at deposit-taking MoneyPass ATMs|
|PNC Bank||Allows customers to deposit cash or checks at non-PNC Bank ATMs (in addition to its own network)|