Advertiser Disclosure


0.20% APY available on checking account is higher than most.
Members have free access to over 56,000 ATMs.


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



With its strong interest rates and modest product selection, Pentagon Federal Credit Union has the trappings of a typical credit union.

But unlike many of its not-for-profit competitors, PenFed also offers a user-friendly mobile app and an engaging website.

Ratings methodology | Reviewed June 24, 2016



There is a lot to like about PenFed’s sole checking option. Access America Checking comes with solid interest rates and an extensive ATM network, and members shouldn’t have a hard time avoiding the monthly fee.

The $10 monthly fee is easily waived; you just need to keep a minimum balance of $500 or receive direct deposits totaling at least $500 each month. There's a 0.20% APY on balances under $20,000, and an excellent 0.50% APY on balances between $20,000 and $50,000. To qualify for either rate, members must receive direct deposits of at least $1,000 per month.

Regular Savings Account
Min. balance for APY
Learn moreat PenFed Credit Union
Money Market Certificate
Min. balance for APY
1 year
Length of term
Learn moreat PenFed Credit Union
Access America Checking
Monthly fee
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.
Customer service
Website / app
Average is right
PenFed has decent options for credit cards and loans but only has one savings account and checking account option. They are notorious for denying members credit and do nothing to give back to customers who are trying to keep all their banking needs in one institution. Customer loyalty should be encouraged not discouraged.
Some of the reviews on the NerdWallet site were purchased through a third party provider. Users who post a review directly on the NerdWallet site will not be compensated in any way. Please see our Terms of Use and Posting Guidelines for more information.