The Commonwealth Bank of Australia, more commonly referred to as Commonwealth Bank and Commbank, is one of the big four banks. As part of their banking services they offer a MasterCard that is tied to their accounts.
There are two accounts which offer the debit card, Smart Access and Complete Access. They both charge monthly fees, although this is waived if at least $2,000 is deposited in the account. They both allow fee free access to Commonwealth and BankWest ATMs, which are the largest network of bank machines in Australia. Both have EFTPOS capability.
The Smart Access card has a $4 a month fee, while the Complete Access fee is $6 a month. The difference in the two accounts is that the Smart Access account is limited to automatic only access to the phone and internet while the Complete also offers operators, and the Complete Access account has an unlimited number of free branch transactions.
Commonwealth Bank uses MasterCard to process its transactions. This is one of the two top debit card providers in the world. This means that it is accepted in most international destinations, which gets over one of the main problems with EFTPOS cards which have a limited acceptance outside Australia. The debit cards can also be used on most internet sites that accept credit cards. MasterCard has a well-developed fraud detection capacity that complements Commonwealth Bank’s capability. The “zero liability guarantee” means that if there are wholly unauthorised transactions on the card that are reported quickly by the card holder then the card holder will not be liable for the transaction.
MasterCard also offer an applause programme which means that a card holder can have the first refusal at getting tickets for sports matches and concerts.
Commonwealth Bank is the second largest Australian company on the Australian Stock Exchange and it has the largest network of ATMs in Australia. It was set up by the Australian government in 1911 and was only fully privatised in 1996. This has influenced the way in which the bank has grown up as it sees itself as a generalist bank that covers the whole of Australia and it still has a relationship Australia Post which allows everyday account holders to deposit money through Post Offices.
The share trading side of the Commonwealth Bank, Commsec also offers a debit card on a no fee basis. This is available for the customers who are prepared to trade securities with Commonwealth Bank’s budget stock broker, the largest retail stock broker in Australia.