Andrews Federal Credit Union Review: Competitive Rates and Military Benefits

Andrews Federal Credit Union covers military and civilian needs.

Andrews Federal Credit Union is an NCUA-insured financial institution that offers military and civilian members high interest rates on CDs. They’ve been in business since 1948 and currently serve 120,000 members worldwide.

Read on to see if banking with this military credit union is the right decision for you.

Andrews Federal Credit Union Review

Customers dealing with their finances through Andrews Credit Union can choose from a variety of different services and resources, but they must also meet one of the following eligibility requirements:

  • Employed by one of AFCU’s Employer Groups
  • Live, work, attend school or worship in Washington, D.C.
  • Be a member, or intend to become a member, of the American Consumer Council
  • Are a family or household member of an existing AFCU member
  • Active duty, retired service member or civilian affiliated with Joint Base Andrews or Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst

AFCU members have access to savings and checking accounts, CDs (called share certificates), loans, lines of credit, insurance and IRAs. Business services, such as accounts and loans, are also available for owners. Being a modern credit union, AFCU also offers online banking, which includes mobile banking. Members can find branches domestically in Maryland, Washington, D.C., Virginia and New Jersey, as well as internationally in Germany, Belgium and The Netherlands. AFCU is also a shared branch location, which means members can bank at participating locations, giving them more accessibility.

Check Out: Best Credit Cards for Military Service Members

Andrews Federal Credit Union Products and Services

After being cleared for membership, it’s mandatory members create a Base Share savings account. From there, you can choose from dozens of services including:

Checking Account

Customers can choose from either the Free Checking account or Advantage Checking account:

  • Free Checking: Early Pay Day feature so you can receive direct deposits a day earlier, no monthly fees or minimum balances, free eStatements and comes with a Debit Card option.
  • Advantage Checking: Earn 0.20% APY on balances above $1,500 — with a $10 fee on balances below that.

Savings Account

Creating a Base Share savings account is required for AFCU membership and requires a $5 deposit. From there, you can choose between five different savings accounts.

Andrews Federal Credit Union Savings Accounts
NameMinimum to OpenMinimum to Earn APYAPY
Base Share Savings$5$1000.31%
Planner Saving$0$1000.31%
IRA SavingN/A$1000.31%
Holiday Club$0$00.40%
Vacation Club$0$00.40%
Rates are accurate as of Aug. 13, 2018.

Note that the Holiday Club and Vacation Club accounts work a bit like CDs, in that they mature annually on Nov. 1 and May 1, respectively.

Find Out: Pros and Cons of Online Savings Accounts

Share Certificates (CDs)

A share certificate is essentially a CD issued by a credit union instead of a bank. AFCU offers fixed-rate certificates for general certificates as well as traditional, educational and Roth IRAs. You can beef up your APY using a jumbo deposit of $10,000 or more. Here is an overview of general fixed-rate certificates, which require a minimum of $1,000 to open:

AFCU Share Certificates
TermAPY
6 Months0.55%
1 Year1.41%
2 Years1.45%
3 Years1.50%
4 Years1.61%
5 Years1.91%
7 Years2.20%
Rates are accurate as of Aug. 13, 2018.

AFCU currently lists promotional certificates with higher APY than usual, but that comes with untraditional maturity terms.

AFCU Promotional Certificates
TermAPY
9 Months2.75%
17 Months2.25%
30 Months2.55%
55 Months3.05%
Rates are accurate as of Aug. 13, 2018.

These special rates are more than 200 percent higher than the national average, according to AFCU’s website.

Military Benefits

Military personnel and their families might find AFCU’s military-focused programs of most use. AFCU provides tips and resources on its website for service members about to make major transitional moves within or out of the service. AFCU has financial service professionals experienced in dealing with service members in the midst of deployments, permanent changes of station, separations and retirements.

Members stationed, living or traveling in Europe can take advantage of AFCU’s Online Euro Bill Pay, a convenient alternative to mailing your bills in-country. The credit union also facilitates VA home loans.

Military Money: How Much Do Our Men and Women in Uniform Earn?

Advantages and Disadvantages of Andrews Federal Credit Union

AFCU offers some nice perks, but the credit union might not be right for everyone. Here are some of the primary advantages and disadvantages of Andrews Federal Credit Union.

Advantages:

  • High APY on share certificates
  • Seasonal savings accounts offer a competitive APY
  • Additional benefits for military members

Disadvantages:

  • Membership eligibility bars a good amount of people from joining
  • Limited Andrews Federal Credit Union locations
  • Mostly benefits those in the D.C. area

Is Andrews Federal Credit Union Right for You?

Due to its geographic focus, banking with Andrews Federal Credit Union makes the most sense if you’re living in the Washington metro area. Once you’re a member, though, you’re in for life, which means you can always take advantage of the credit union’s high-APY share certificates. The credit union also has ample experience helping military-affiliated customers. Overall, AFCU’s usefulness and benefits might feel limited, but those who are able to take advantage of them will find some competitive interest rates.

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This content is not provided by the companies mentioned. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author alone and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by Andrews Federal Credit Union.