Pros

Checking deposits of $20,000 to $50,000 earn 0.50% APY, and balances below that amount earn 0.20%.
Members have access to 68,000 free ATMs.

Cons

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

Overall

3.5

Like many of its not-for-profit competitors, Pentagon Federal Credit Union, or PenFed, has a modest product selection. But it makes up for that with good interest rates for checking 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 Feb. 16, 2018

Checking

4.5

Access America, PenFed’s lone checking option, has tiered interest rates that are better than the national average, though it’s possible to get 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%.

Regular Savings Account
0.05%
APY
$5
Min. balance for APY
Learn moreat PenFed Credit Union
Money Market Certificate
1.36%
APY
$1,000
Min. balance for APY
1 year
Length of term
Learn moreat PenFed Credit Union
Access America Checking
0.20%
APY
$10
Monthly fee
$500
Balance to waive monthly fee
Learn moreat PenFed Credit Union
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
Find another credit union
Most complicated people ive had to deal with. Trying to pay my car payment and they are making everything complicated. Also $1 fee to send a paper bill to me. Ridiculous
Overall
Customer service
Good
Website / app
Poor
Rates
Excellent
Fees
Low
Great Credit Union
I have been a member at PenFed for 15 years. I love their customer service with one negative.... Their mortgage department is very hard to work with. All of my accounts and loans are with PenFed and I'm staying with them for life. One more thing... they need to update mobile apps and online banking more often.
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