Published on January 27th, 2016 | by Chuck49
Destinations Credit Union: 3% Reward Checking Account, Up to $10,000
[Originally posted on 12/28/15, reposting on 1/27/16 since multiple data points came in that it’s only a soft pull.]
Offer at a glance
- Interest Rate: 3.01% APY on balances up to $10k
- Additional Benefits: ATM fee refunds
- Minimum Balance: None
- Availability: Nationwide; must make $25 donation to Red Cross to join [Update: It appears that the Red Cross option has now been limited to MD and DE, so this may no longer be nationwide.]
- Direct deposit required: None
- Additional requirements: Yes, 12 debit card purchases
- Hard/soft pull: Soft
- Credit card funding: Up to $1,000
- Monthly fees: None
- Early Account Termination Fee: Unknown
- Insured: NCUA
- Destinations Credit Union offers a high-interest checking account that earns 3.01% APY on balances up to $10,000 when doing the qualifying actions (below).
- An additional benefit of the checking account is that domestic ATM fees incurred will be reimbursed up to a limit of $20 per cycle, when doing the qualifying actions.
When opening the account online, be sure to choose the Kasasa Cash option and not the Kasasa Cash Back option.
[Destinations CU also offers a Kasasa Savings account that can get up to .75% interest, but that’s part isn’t too impressive since it’s possible to get slightly higher than that with other savings accounts, such as Ally and Discover.]
To be eligible for the higher rate, you need to do three things each qualification cycle:
- Have at least 12 debit card purchases post and settle
- Be enrolled and receive eStatement notice
- Be enrolled and log into online banking
Basically, after the initial setup, you’ll have to log into your online banking once each month, plus make 12 debit card purchases. See this chart for the exact dates of the qualification cycles.
If you don’t do the qualifying actions, there are still no fees at all, but the interest rate will drop to .05% APY.
How to Join
- Anyone can join the credit union by becoming a member of the Friends of the Red Cross; the option will pop up during the account opening process. You need to make a $25 donation to the Red Cross to become a member.
- See also other organizations you can belong to and qualify for membership here.
- If your family member is eligible to join DCU (e.g. the family member is a member of Red Cross) then you can join as well.
[Update: It appears that the Red Cross option has now been limited to MD and DE, so this may no longer be nationwide.]
The Fine Print
- APYs accurate as of 10/01/2015; rates may change after account is opened
- ATM fee reimbursements will be credited to the account on the first business day of the next monthly statement cycle; ATM receipt must be presented for reimbursement of an individual ATM fee of $5.00 or higher
- When qualifying actions are met, balances over $10,000 earn 0.25% dividend rate on the portion of the balance over $10,000, resulting in 3.01% – 0.50% APY depending on the balance; if qualifications are not met, all balances earn 0.05% APY
- Qualifying transactions must post to and settle Kasasa Cash account during monthly qualification cycle; transactions may take one or more business days from the date transaction was made to post to and settle account
- ATM-processed transactions do not count towards qualifying debit card transactions
- The advertised Kasasa Cash APY is based on compounding dividends
- Dividends earned in Kasasa Cash are automatically transferred to Kasasa Saver each statement cycle and does not compound
- Actual interest amount paid may be less than advertised Kasasa Cash APY
Credit Card Funding
You can fund up to $1,000 with Paypal or $500 with a credit card directly.
Readers in the comments to this post had success funding via Paypal with INK and Fidelity Amex with no cash advance problem. Presumably, that will be the case with any card when using the Paypal option.
Especially nice about the Paypal option is that you can even fund with Amex, a rarity in bank funding.
The 12-debit-transaction requirement is a pain but doable; you can buy twelve 50¢ Amazon gift cards or even do twelve $1 Serve loads online. There is a $25 fee to join the credit union, but it’s going to the Red Cross which makes it easier to swallow.
It’s good to see another option for high-interest savings. There are a many others that we’ve covered, including CCU for 4.59% interest on up to $20k, LMCU for 3% on up to $15k, GLCU for 3% on up to $10k, and numerous prepaid cards on up to $5k, and Northpointe on up to $5k.
Thanks to tbradnc on Reddit for sharing this option and the details