In Indonesia, banks take cue from fast food with drive-through ATMs


In an effort to bring convenience and improved customer service, Indonesian banks are busy pushing an unusual channel to appeal to customers: drive-through ATMs.

The idea of not having to park your car and walk to an ATM is becoming more common with drive-through ATMs in countries across Asia Pacific, with China (through Citibank), and Australia (through Bendigo Bank and NAB) boasting such ATMs.

Their popularity is most prominent in Indonesia, where Bank Negara Indonesia (BNI) offers the 24/7 service to its customers in 29 destinations. Some drive-through machines feature separate lanes for car drivers and motorcyclists, to enhance vehicular convenience.

Bank Negara, which launched its drive-thru ATM in 2004, plans to expand the service, according to Iwan Kamaruddin, EVP and GM transactional Banking Services at Bank Negara Indonesia.

“BNI is the first Bank in Indonesia to offer specialised drive-through ATMs for motor-cyclists and two wheeled customers. We will be deploying an additional 15 new drive-through ATM/Motorcycles in 2014,” said Kamaruddin, noting the bank also offers round-the-clock security in correspondence with these ATMs to offer increased safety to customers, who are increasingly enthusiastic about using the service.

“We have gained a favorable and enthusiastic response measured by the response rate of our customers who apply to use our ‘Drive-Thru ATM’ services. We have noted that our average usage rate has been around 7600 transactions per month from each of our 29 drive-through points around the country.”

However, according to Jeffrey Bahar, Deputy CEO at Spire Research and Consulting, these ATMs will not provide as much growth as other offers making banking convenient for Indonesians.

“Drive-through ATM growth will not be as high as the more popular weekend banking branch which currently already has total number [of branches] surpassing total number of drive-thru ATMs.  Other types [of services], total number of cashless ATMs, cash deposit machines and ‘mini’ ATMs (checkout counter POS at convenient stores) will continue to outgrow the total number of drive-through ATMs.”

Bahar also suggests customers this method of conducting transactions is not the most secure, predicting customers are more likely to park their car and walk up to an ATM, or branch.

“Safety concerns over magnetic ATM card cloning and crime robbing is one of the main reasons for account holders not to transact over drive-thru ATM.  Instead, they prefer to step out of and park their cars or motorcycles, walk in to ATM kiosk as typically there will be a physical door to close and CCTV”. 

Kamaruddin highlights these drive-through ATM options come with accompanying security guards, “our drive-through ATMs serve 24/7 with corresponding security guards available to provide a sense of safety and convenience.”