Careful With Those Cards

Last night I was lucky to avoid a costly mistake of not paying close enough attention while conducting a financial transaction. With a night of crummy weather ahead, we decided to have last night as our “eat-out” night and we ordered some Chinese food. After placing the order, I decided that I would head out a few minutes early and get some cash at the ATM for our spending money next week and to cover the cost of dinner.

Charging a Fee?
As I pulled up to the ATM and swiped my card, I entered my pin number and the amount of cash to withdraw. At this point, I received a message that the bank was going to charge me a $2 fee for the transaction. This was odd because while this bank is not one of our banks, it is in the fee-free network for us.

After contemplating whether I really wanted to pay the fee, I opted to continue the transaction and accepted the fee. Then I received a notice that my pin number was entered incorrectly. I re-entered the pin number and received the same message. Immediately I became concerned that something had gone wrong with our account or check card.

Doh! Moment.
After receiving the message about the pin number, I decided to cancel the transaction and would head home to verify everything was okay with my account. As I opened my wallet to ensure that my check card was in my wallet, I realized why I was having trouble at the ATM.

Instead of using my check card, I had swiped my BP Visa card. Doh! It is a good thing that I don’t have the same pin number on the BP Visa card as I do on my check card, otherwise I would have completed a cash advance and been charged an outrageous interest rate. To be honest, I don’t even know if I do have a pin number on the BP Visa card or what it is if I do have one, but I was lucky to avoid a costly mistake due to my inattention.

Once I realized my mistake, I used my check card and the transaction completed without any incident. I think part of my confusion is that we just received new check cards, which are now blue in color. Our old card was green, just like my BP Visa card, and I must have just grabbed that card thinking it was my old check card.

Have you ever made a costly financial error due to lack of attention on your part? I was lucky this time but will be making sure I pay more attention in the future.

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1 Response

  1. March 21, 2007

    […] latest Carnival of Credit Cards has been posted and includes my post about being careful with your credit cards. Be sure to check out the entire carnival but here are a few of my […]

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