Digital Federal Credit Union launched in 1979. They’ve since grown into the largest credit union headquartered in New England, with branches spread throughout Massachusetts and New Hampshire. Digital Federal Credit Union offers a full range of banking products including checking accounts, savings accounts, CDs and retirement accounts.
For its deposit accounts, Digital Federal Credit Union keeps fees low, pays competitive interest rates and provides solid ATM access. However, the interest rates on their other products aren’t as high and they’ve received some customer service complaints.
Anyone can become a Digital Federal Credit Union (DCU) member by joining a participating organization. There are also ways to qualify for membership through work, family or other community ties.
Every member of the Digital Federal Credit Union must open and maintain a Primary Savings account to use the credit union’s other deposit accounts, loans and other services. It takes only $5 to open this savings account and that’s all you need to keep in it. There’s no monthly fee and it pays an extremely high interest rate on your first $1,000. For any balance beyond that, the rate is much lower but still competitive, though there are options out there that pay even more.
You can access the account through the Digital Federal Credit Union mobile app, but it doesn’t come with an ATM card. To withdraw cash, you’d need to transfer to another account first. Even though this account is mandatory for joining Digital Federal Credit Union, it’s good enough to be worth using as a savings account, especially to take advantage of the sky-high rate on your first $1,000 in the account.
An excellent savings account that offers one high flat interest rate on all balances.
Digital Federal Credit Union’s Advantage Savings account is another high-yield account. Its main benefit is that it earns a very competitive interest rate that stays the same for your entire balance. While the Primary Savings account earns a little more for your first $1,000, any amount over this limit would earn more in an Advantage Savings account, so it could be a smart move to combine the two. Besides the interest rate difference, Advantage Savings has the same features and benefits as Primary Savings: no minimum balance requirement, no monthly fee and no ATM access.
Digital Federal Credit Union also offers a Money Market Savings account. This account does not have a minimum opening deposit requirement and will not charge a monthly fee. However, it does not pay interest unless you have at least $1,000 in your account. The amount you earn increases the larger your balance. Still, even at the highest limits, you could still earn a higher rate with the Digital Federal Credit Union Primary Savings account. If you do want a money market account, consider these top options instead.
If you’d like to save up for the holidays, you can open a Holiday Club Savings account. This separates your accounts so you can easily put aside and track your progress for this goal, rather than having all your money mixed together in one place. The Holiday Club Savings account does not charge a monthly fee or have a minimum balance requirement. However, to keep the account open you do need to set up an automatic transfer of at least $20 a month from another account. In September, Digital Federal Credit Union will then transfer your balance plus earnings to your main savings account, ahead of the holiday season.
These savings accounts let you change the names to help track what you’re saving for.
The Member Described Savings account has no minimum balance or monthly fee, though you must keep at least $100 in your account to earn interest. Its main feature is that you can rename it to whatever you want to show what you’re using this side account for, like to save for a vacation, for college tuition or to pay for your next car. You could also open multiple accounts for multiple goals. This way you can organize your savings between different priorities.
Like the name says, the Digital Federal Credit Union Free Checking account does not charge a monthly fee. There’s also no minimum balance requirement to open or maintain this account. The Free Checking account earns interest on balances up to $100,000 and the rate is quite good.
With this account, not only can you make free withdrawals from Digital Federal Credit Union ATMs, you also receive free access to over 80,000 free ATMs nationwide through partner branches and ATMs. In addition, if you set up direct deposit and make at least five transactions a month on your account (such as bill pay, debit card purchases and balance transfers), Digital Federal Credit Union will refund up to $300 a year for out-of-network ATM charges. You can also deposit checks through the credit union’s mobile app.
There are a couple small drawbacks. This account does not offer any sort of overdraft protection, as Digital Federal Credit Union charges $15 per overdraft, up to $30 per day. The debit card also does not earn cash back on purchases. Still, this is an excellent overall account for those who don’t want to worry about fees, want convenient ATM access for their money and would like to earn interest. Check out this article to see how it compares to the best checking accounts on the market today.
Digital Federal Credit Union’s HSA Checking account lets you access the money in your tax-advantaged healthcare savings account, without owing any monthly fees.
If you have a high deductible health insurance plan, you could open an HSA Checking account with Digital Federal Credit Union. There’s no minimum deposit to open this account and no monthly fee. Your balance will earn interest while in the checking account. When you have healthcare expenses, you can use the account’s debit card or checks to cover them. It’s a convenient and free account for holding onto cash for upcoming healthcare expenses, while earning interest at the same time.
|Term||APY||Minimum deposit to earn APY|
Digital Federal Credit Union offers CDs with terms that range from three months up to five years. It takes at least $500 to open a CD and you must keep at least this much in the account to earn interest. Their CD rates are not so impressive. There are much higher-paying options on the market today, and you could even earn more through the savings accounts at Digital Federal Credit Union, without locking your money up.
In addition to their regular CDs, Digital Federal Credit Union offers jumbo CDs, which require a minimum balance of at least $25,000. However, there is no rate increase for these larger deposits. They also offer QuickStart CDs for members under the age of 23, which require only a minimum balance of $100, and Jump-Up CDs, which let you increase the rate one time should market rates go up after you sign up.
Digital Federal Credit Union does not offer no-penalty withdrawal CDs as a product and all their CDs charge early withdrawal penalties. However, Digital Federal Credit Union is running a temporary benefit where they waive these penalties so you can take out your money without forfeiting interest. This program was running as of November 2021.
Digital Federal Credit Union is a regional bank in New England. Most of their branches are in Massachusetts while they also have a few in New Hampshire. Even though the actual Digital Federal Credit Union branches are limited to two states, their members have nationwide access to over 80,000 free ATMs, thanks to partnerships with Allpoint, SUM and the CO-OP network for credit unions.
Digital Federal Credit Union offers customer service by phone, email and live chat (though live chat is reserved only to existing members). Their website is well-organized and makes it easy to learn more about the credit union, compare products and find an application to join as a member. Members can handle their banking directly through the website and they can also download a mobile app to check their balances, transfer funds, pay bills and deposit checks using their mobile device.
Outside reviews of the customer experience at Digital Federal Credit Union have not been positive though, with an average score of only 1.5 out of 5 stars on DepositAccounts.com. Reviewers complained about long hold times to reach customer service by phone, glitches with the website and mobile app banking experience and problems with setting up a new account. The Digital Federal Credit Union website is full of positive reviews and customer testimonials though, so this could be seen as a balance against the negative complaints.