Most-hated-fee contest: Round 1

When it comes to getting nickel-and-dimed, there’s plenty of competition. In preparation for a story about 15 irritating fees — and how to avoid them — MONEY asked readers for the most frustrating fees they’ve been charged by banks, airlines and other merchants. We received 2,000 responses.

Now, in order to channel our readers’ righteous indignation, we’d like to crown the biggest loser: The Most-Hated Fee of All. Over the next few days, we’ll be asking you to narrow down the field of 15 outrageous fees by picking your least-favorite surcharge among the two or three we’ll be spotlighting at a time. Come back daily to vote — and return for the semi-final and final rounds — so we can choose the worst fee there is.

Here’s Group 1:

  • Being charged to cover overdrafts from your savings: Banks charge $10 to $20 every time they transfer your money between your checking and savings account. (For more about this fee, and how to fight it, click here.)
  • Paying to use your frequent-flyer miles: Redeeming your miles on U.S. Airways, for example, costs $25 to $50. (For more about this fee, and how to fight it, click here.)
  • Laying out who knows how much in annuity fees. If you buy a variable annuity, the fees are disclosed in the prospectus. To find them, however, you’ll have to comb through hundreds of pages and do some mathematical heavy lifting. (For more about this fee, and how to fight it, click here.)

Now you know today’s contenders, it’s time to vote for your least-favorite fee! Please add your comments as well.

Follow the More Money blog on Twitter (and be notified of more hated-fee voting) at

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