ATM Withdrawal Limits: What You Need to Know

Banks impose ATM withdrawal limits for security, among other practical purposes.

Young woman is using an ATM while looking up something on her cellphone.
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Banks and credit unions impose ATM withdrawal limits to maintain cash reserves and provide customer security. These limits usually reset on a daily basis, but your ATM withdrawals may be subject to limitations that apply per transaction. ATM withdrawal limits vary depending on the bank, so before you withdraw a handful of cash, know whether a limit applies.

What are ATM withdrawal limits?

To maintain and distribute enough cash to customers at any time, ATMs impose ATM withdrawal limits to control the cash flow. And for security purposes, ATM withdrawal limits keep someone from being able to drain your bank account in the case your debit card is stolen. The exact amount you can withdraw from an ATM at one time depends on several things, such as limits based on your individual card or account type, the availability of funds in your account, the amount the ATM is capable of dispensing and so on. 

How much can you withdraw from an ATM each day?

The maximum amount of money you can withdraw from an ATM at one time depends on the bank. Most banks have ATM withdrawal limits ranging from $300 to $3,000 daily. For example, Bank of America advertises a $1,000 maximum daily withdrawal limit for most accounts.

How to increase your ATM withdrawal limit

Depending on your bank, you can take several approaches to increasing your ATM withdrawal limit.

  • Call the bank and ask. You can likely request an increase by calling your bank and asking, and you might get an increase within an hour if the bank approves. You may need to make a case for why you need access to a larger amount of cash.
  • Withdraw from a savings account. In some cases, you can link your savings account to your debit card and access it at an ATM to withdraw money from there.
  • Withdraw cash at a branch. If you exceed your daily ATM withdrawal limit, you can withdraw cash from your checking account at a branch. 
  • Cash a check. Another way to get around ATM withdrawal limits is to write a check out to "Cash," sign it and cash it at the bank.  
  • Get cash back at a checkout counter. If you're over your ATM limit, you may be able to get cashback by making a purchase with your card at a store that offers this option. 

How to find ATMs with higher withdrawal limits

Knowing which ATMs have the highest withdrawal limits is important for successful cash withdrawals. Some banks, such as Morgan Stanley and Citi have relatively high daily ATM withdrawal limits as high as $5,000 per day. Depending on the account type, banks generally offer various withdrawal limits. You'll have to research and compare accounts to find a higher limit.

The bottom line

ATM withdrawal limits vary depending on the bank, account type and funds in your account. To work around ATM withdrawal limits, you can call the bank and ask for a limit increase, get cash back at checkout or withdraw from a linked savings account. You can also write a check out to "Cash," or visit a bank branch.

Correction, 7:30 a.m. PT Jan. 25: An earlier version of this article suggested that some banks such as Morgan Stanley, Citi and PNC Bank have relatively high daily ATM withdrawal limits ranging from $5,000 to $20,000. In fact, Morgan Stanley and Citi each have maximum limits of $5,000. PNC told CNET that it doesn't disclose its maximum daily withdrawal limit.