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What to do if… The cash machine has swallowed my card


Our new monthly blog, “What To Do If” will cover what you should do when you come across a common problem with your banking or finances that you need help with. This month we will be looking at what you can do if you use a cash machine to withdraw money or check your balance, and the machine does not give you your card back.

It can happen in any of the cash machines from any bank- Barclays, RBS, Natwest, Lloyds, and Santander. It is an annoying, but surprisingly a common problem.

Unfortunately, if a cash machine swallows your card you will, in almost all cases, not be able to get that card back and have to order a new one from your bank. This is because a cash machine usually destroys a card once they swallow it to prevent fraud. You can order a new one by phoning your bank or visiting your local branch. Don’t forget to take some ID into the bank with you when ordering a new card. Banks usually take between two and seven days to provide you with a new card, depending on the bank.

If it is a Natwest card you have lost, you will still be able to withdraw money from Natwest cash machines with their 24 hour Emergency Cash Service. You can access up to £300 if you are an Online or Telephone banking customer or up to £40 if you're not. For more information, click here.

If you are with a different bank, you can obtain cash by going into a branch with a form of ID (a passport usually works best) and requesting it. If you do not have any ID, you may have to answer some security questions to prove you are who you say you are.

It is also important to take a note of the time, place and any reference numbers on the cash machine, especially if you have tried to take out money and it has not come out. This will help your bank get to the bottom of the problem when they are investigating it.

A cash machine at a bank will usually swallow a card if there is a problem with the chip and pin section of your card, or occasionally if you enter your pin incorrectly to many times. They also may hold a card if they believe there are some suspicious transactions on it, so make sure to warn your bank if you are going to make any large transactions, or lots of transactions in one go.

If you are stuck with no card and no access to your bank, you may be able to use internet banking or apps on your phone to transfer some money over to a trusted family member or friend, who can then withdraw it for you.

Your bank will usually try and do as much as it can to help while you have not got your card. If you still feel like you have calls for complaint, you can speak to your bank and let them know why you are unhappy. If you feel the matter has not been resolved by speaking to your bank alone, you can speak to the Financial Ombudsman who will investigate it for you.

Unfortunately here a we can not directly help you with this problem. The best thing for you to do is contact your bank via their customer service phone line, and they will direct you.

We hope this article helped! If you have any questions regarding this or any other financial problems, please call us on 0800 092 1245 or ask us a question.

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