Use Your ATM Card Once A Year To Keep It Valid

If you’re the type of person who never uses your ATM card—and we really mean never in this case, you might want to call your bank to find out if there’s a minimum activity threshold to hit to keep it from being deactivated. A reader tried to use her Bank of America ATM card recently and kept getting an “invalid transaction” error at every ATM. She called the number on the back of the card to ask what was going on: “I was told that since I hadn’t used my card in a couple of years it was closed, even though the expiration date is several years in the future, and I hadn’t received any note that suggested I should cut the card up into tiny pieces.”

Perhaps most people use their ATM cards all the time, or already know this, but I was surprised and disappointed to find out that I could not use my card when I needed it.

Lucky for me this wasn’t a dire emergency, but it was still enough to leave me temporariliy frazzled.

(Thanks to l i!)
(Photo: DarthMullet)

Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.