How many times have you had a sudden need for cash and have had to drive way out to find your bank’s ATM kiosk? ICICI Bank now takes care of this problem. The bank recently announced that its savings account customers can now avail of free and unlimited access to over 18,000 ATMs of Visa-participating banks. To avail of the free usage facility, all a customer has to do is maintain a quarterly average balance of Rs 10,000. While the customer will be charged at the time of transaction, all charges will be reversed in the subsequent quarter. Says Maninder Juneja, head of retail liabilities, “The bank has been continuously focusing on offering the best to customers, reaching out to one and all through an extensive distribution network. We continue to leverage our technology platforms to offer unique value propositions to our customers.” It is interesting to note that this facility is limited to only higher-end customers. After all, several savings accounts have a far lower minimum balance requirement.
So does this move by the second largest bank in the country force other banks to follow suit? Probably not anytime soon. Says Aspy Engineer, vicepresident, ATM channel management, UTI Bank, “I think it’s more of a gimmick. It’s not going to increase ATM usage in any manner. UTI Bank has been offering its priority customers a similar facility in any ATM across the country since day one.”