at PenFed Credit Union,

Federally insured by the NCUA

Pros

Checking account earns interest.
Members have access to 68,000 free ATMs.
2.00% APY on its online savings account.

Cons

0.05% APY on its basic savings account.
$1,000 minimum on share certificates is high.
Doesn't participate in shared branching.

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Overall

4.0

Pentagon Federal Credit Union, or PenFed, offers a modest product selection for military-affiliated members and others. But it makes up for that with good interest rates for checking, online savings and money market certificates. PenFed offers a handy mobile app, plus it’s relatively easy to join for a credit union. Its $30 nonsufficient funds fee, however, isn’t as consumer friendly, especially since there’s no cap on how many times PenFed can charge it in one day.

 

Ratings methodology | Reviewed Dec. 19, 2018

Checking

4.5

Access America, PenFed’s lone checking option, has tiered interest rates that are better than the national average, though you can find higher rates elsewhere, particularly at top online banks. With daily balances under $20,000, you can earn an annual percentage yield of 0.20%; deposits of $20,000 to $50,000 earn 0.50%. Its network of ATMs is larger than that of many financial institutions.

Regular Savings Account
APY
0.05%
Min. balance for APY
$5

at PenFed Credit Union,

Federally insured by the NCUA

How does PenFed Credit Union compare?

PenFed Credit Union

Regular Savings Account

NerdWallet Rating

APY

0.05%

Monthly Fees

$0

Bonus features

No Monthly Fee

Credit Union

Mobile-friendly

Citizens Access

Online Savings Account

NerdWallet Rating

at Citizens Access,

Member, FDIC

APY

2.20%

Monthly Fees

$0

Bonus features

No Monthly Fee

Competitive APY

Barclays

Online Savings Account

NerdWallet Rating

at Barclays,

Member, FDIC

APY

2.10%

Monthly Fees

$0

Bonus features

No Monthly Fee

Competitive APY

Not for you? Read more bank reviews
NerdWallet reviews are the result of independent research by our editorial team while accountholder reviews are contributions from independent users not affiliated with NerdWallet. Banks, issuers and credit card companies are not responsible for any content posted on the NerdWallet site, nor do they endorse or guarantee any posted comments or reviews.
Overall
Customer service
Poor
Website / app
Poor
Rates
Poor
Fees
High
Worst bank ever
Since PedFed took over, it has gone downhill and fast. Closing most of the locations. I’ve called the 800 number three times to get some information on my account, that they could not help me with, so they reached out to a different representative to have her call me back. (Because they will not transfer your call to them) I’ve never received that call. No help at all!! Now I’ve called the 800 number for two days and can’t get anyone on the line. I received the title for my truck in the mail, and I still have an active loan with them for my truck, so I’m not sure why they would be sending me the title lol… I have about $9000.00 left on my loan, and once it’s paid, I’m gone!! Worst bank ever!!
Overall
Customer service
Poor
Website / app
Good
Rates
Poor
Fees
High
Unskilled Personal Bankers
Its almost impossible to send an International Bank Transfer. The staff, I have used two, do not know how to complete the online forms. And certainly do not know how to find any information about the destination bank. This has happened at least three times. Today, the lady helping I worked with yawned three times in my face and had the attitude that I was interrupting something, even with no one else waiting. You can never complete the transaction in one visit. Seriously considering moving to a credit union with skilled staff.
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