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Cheque processing fee increase

Cheque processing fee increase

From 1 February 2020, WAW will be increasing its cheque processing fee from $0.40 to $1.00. 

The use of cheques as a non-cash payment method has changed dramatically over the past decade. Cheques now account for less than one per cent of non-cash payments, down from a high of 85 percent in 1980. Consumer preferences have shifted towards digital payment options including debit and credit cards, BPAY, direct deposits and online banking.

As a result, the cost of processing cheques has continued to increase and overheads are spread across fewer transactions as fewer cheques are written. 

WAW needs to increase the cheque processing fee to cover the increasing overheads associated with providing this service to customers that require it.  

This change will impact any customer who issues a cheque from their WAW chequebook and when the cheque is processed by WAW they will be charged $1.00 per cheque.

Cheque fee rebates being removed from the Customer Benefit Program

The cheque processing fee will also be removed from WAW’s Customer Benefits Program (CBP).

The Customer Benefit Program rewards customers based on the amount of banking they have with WAW. Each month a CBP rebate reward is calculated using the average daily balance of all deposit or loan sub-accounts attached to a particular account, and this is applied to offset any fee charges. 

Effective 1 February 2020, cheque processing fees will no longer be rebated as part of the Customer Benefit Program. 

More Information

The cheque fee will increase from $0.40 to $1.00 per cheque.
The fee will increase from February 1, 2020.
This change will impact any customer who issues a cheque from their WAW chequebook and when the cheque is processed by WAW they will be charged $1.00 per cheque.
This decision has been made because the cost of processing cheques has materially increased over recent times and with another significant cost increase being implemented in January it is no longer feasible for WAW to continue rebating these fees.
Our Customer Service team are available to offer support to assist you with understanding alternate ways of making payments, should you wish to avoid paying the cheque processing fee.
There are a few electronic options that are a good replacement for cheques payments.

Electronic funds transfer - Send funds straight from your bank account to another, using your internet or phone banking.

Direct Credit - Pay accounts or bills automatically from the bank account or debit card of your choice.

BPAY – Pay bills via internet or phone banking using a secure BPAY customer reference number.

Debit card (online or in person) - Use your debit card online or in person.
In our region, other banks charge a range of fees for cheque processing, from $0.80 to $3.00 per cheque. Over many years, WAW has absorbed much of the additional costs of cheque processing over many years where other financial institutions have passed this on.
The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) predicts that cheques will be phased out as consumers continue their uptake of digital transactions. This is likely to be in the next few years, given the high fixed costs involved in operating the system. Already one the major banks have communicated that they may cease accepting cheques from 2021.
Cheques take time to clear - It takes you time to write and bank a cheque, and time for us to process it. Electronic payments are fast, secure and convenient. They help you save time and money.

Cheques can be vulnerable - Cheques can go astray or simply get lost in the mail, which is a high security risk.

Cheques are harder to track - When you pay by cheque, your balance only updates when the cheque is cashed, making it harder to keep track. Paying electronically allows you to track your cash flow via your online banking, without waiting for a cheque to clear.

Cheques are expensive - cheques need to be handled manually, making them more expensive than online payment methods.
As always, please feel free to contact the WAW team on 1300 368 555 or via email at, or visit any WAW Service Centre if you have any concerns.