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PenFed? 🙄 I Should Have Known Better. 🙄


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I was a PenFed member years ago and although I never joined dirty, I never got any pre-approved offers.  Every time I applied on my own initiative, it was an immediate rejection for being Egyptian.  There came a time when I inquired about a CLOC, and they informed me that after being a member for 6 months one automatically was enrolled in their "Thrifty Line of Credit" for overdraft protection.  It was basically a $500 CLOC.  Strange thing was, though, that I had been a member for several years and never had that OD protection available on my checking account.  The CSR said she'd look into it and get back to me.

 

The next day I got an e-mail stating I wasn't eligible for that OD protection because I had an overseas address.  An FPO, to be precise.  I sent an e-mail to the PenFed CEO asking exactly WTF was wrong with people at PenFed.  After all, it is Pentagon Federal, right?  There are > 165,000 US military personnel stationed overseas and each and every one of them is ineligible for their cheapskate OD protection?  The CEO responded that it had been an oversight and they immediately fixed it.  The next day I noticed their Thrifty LOC attached to my checking account.  But it was too late.  I had had enough.  I dumped PenFed and had a nice FOAD conversation with the PenFed CEO.  
 

Fast forward a few years, and I all of a sudden get a pre-approval for their Power Rewards Visa.  First I saw their soft inquiry on EQ and then a week later the offer came in the mail.  I was surprised because I didn't think they would solicit people who were no longer members.  But they do.  After kicking it around a bit, I applied fully expecting to get declined.  I am still Egyptian.   Surprisingly, it was approved.  
 

So, I opened a savings account and a checking account.  Rates suck, but their rates suck less than others, so I figured I'd open a CD and stick some money in their high-yield savings, too.  Maybe PenFed wasn't so bad anymore.  Well, I was wrong.  They're worse.

 

I found that charges were listed online as pending even though they were posted on my last billing statement.  Weird.  I then saw that my available credit never increased even though payments were made.  I called and the CSR gave me some b.s. story about how it takes a long time for the BillPay service to actually send them the money.  HUCA. Another b.s. story.  Over four days and 8 CSRs that didn't know their butt from a whole in the ground, finally I get one who is smart.  She explained that for the first 90 days payments are held from replenishing available credit for ten days after posting.  Ok, I suppose that could make sense as ACH payments from external accounts could be fraudulent.  But then when I made payments from funds that entered my checking account over a week ago via wire transfer they still were held.  That is f'd up.

 

A high-yield savings account at HSBC dropped their rate again and PenFed's rate was higher.  I decided to wire over a bunch of cash to my PenFed checking and open a PenFed high-yield savings.  When opening the account online, you have to initially fund the account with an ACH pull from an external account.  You cannot transfer the opening deposit from your existing PenFed account.  Weird.  So I pulled $5 from Navy.  A couple of days later, I decide to put a good chunk of money into the new account that was sitting in checking.  I go to make the transfer, it it fails.  I get a message saying that "The cash advance amount exceeds the $2,000 daily limit".  WTF???  There is no cash advance involved.  I have cleared funds in checking that I want to move to savings.  I try again.  It fails a second time.  I try to transfer $2,000 and it works.  I do it again.  It works.  I do this ten times and it works, but I get sick and tired of the b.s. and don't feel like doing this 15 more times.  I call in.  The CSR is clueless.  HUCA.  Clueless again.  HUCA.  This lady is smart.  She does the transfer for me and it works.  Then she explains that for the first 1/2 year you are limited to $2,000 in transfers even between PenFed accounts.  WTF is wrong with these people?  Are they on freaking food stamps?  If you have your salary deposited in PenFed you can only move $2,000 into savings?  
 

In the decades I have been with Navy or USAA, I can count on one hand the times their website was down for maintenance.  With PenFed, over the past three weeks I am running out of fingers and toes.  
 

The other day I get a call from their security folks asking about a $99 payment three weeks ago to Verizon.  After asking if I made the charge, I tell him I did.  Then he asks, "Were you forced or coerced into making this charge?"  WTF?  
 

From the beginning I found PenFed blocked connections to their website from various overseas locations.  I'm used to that, so instead of committing a federal criminal offense by using my government up system for personal use, I use a VPN.  Today PenFed starts blocking online logins from VPNs.  
 

I'm tired of this shyte.  These people are freaking insane.  Time to be an ex-member again.  

 

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I've had their Power Rewards CC for about 2+ years now, no problems at all..

 

but they do keep bugging me to open up savings, checking, refinance my house/car...

which I'm not interested in *at all*

 

sometimes I wonder if these banks throw credit card offers out there en masse to get a customer base they can spam for other products..

 

BTW- I had their card hooked to my stamps.com account for monthly/recurring charges.. went along fine for MONTHS and then one month they declined the recurring charge of $8.73 and threw out a fraud alert.

I confirmed that the charge was mine.. but I moved the charge onto another card. Scroo that.

 

Because I have a $15k limit with them, I'll keep their card .. but, I would never open anymore accounts with them.

 

 

 

 

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14 hours ago, Cactus Flower said:

I've had their Power Rewards CC for about 2+ years now, no problems at all..

 

but they do keep bugging me to open up savings, checking, refinance my house/car...

which I'm not interested in *at all*

 

sometimes I wonder if these banks throw credit card offers out there en masse to get a customer base they can spam for other products..

 

BTW- I had their card hooked to my stamps.com account for monthly/recurring charges.. went along fine for MONTHS and then one month they declined the recurring charge of $8.73 and threw out a fraud alert.

I confirmed that the charge was mine.. but I moved the charge onto another card. Scroo that.

 

Because I have a $15k limit with them, I'll keep their card .. but, I would never open anymore accounts with them.

 

 

 

 

 

My limit is also $15k.  Unless I can get it up after a while to around $50K, it will see very, very little use.  As for opening additional accounts with them, in a nutshell ... when hell freezes over.

 

I think part of the problem is that PenFed staff is, for the most part, brain-dead.  That and they earn peanuts.  Their top-line CSRs with years of experience are earning less than a Starfucs Barturdista.  No wonder you have to HUCA 6 times in order to find someone who can answer a simple question correctly. 

 

Can you imagine their security analyst asking me about a charge that was made about 6 days prior?  And after I told him it was a legitimate charge, he asks if I was coerced or forced to make the charge.  Seriously, even Krusty the Clown wouldn't think like that.  

 

I'm surprised they offer pre-approvals to non-members.  But then with the antics I've seen since opening that account, I shouldn't be surprised.  A 10-day hold on cash payments to your credit card account is insane.    

 

I've seen people biatch about Navy and USAA, but when you compare them to PenFed they walk on water.  

 

The only thing I see PenFed has going for them is the 2% cash back coupled with no FTF.  They do post the rewards as soon as purchases post (like CapOne), but redemptions as a statement credit take weeks to post.  In comparison, CapOne takes about a day.  

Edited by PotO
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1 hour ago, PotO said:

 

I'm surprised they offer pre-approvals to non-members.  But then with the antics I've seen since opening that account, I shouldn't be surprised.  A 10-day hold on cash payments to your credit card account is insane.    

 

 

Just double checking that the offer was a "pre-approval".  I believe you if you're confident, but around the same time-frame, I received a "pre-authorized to apply" invitation.

 

btw, I'm amazed with the patience you've extended them in the course of your exchanges with them. 

Edited by hdporter
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2 hours ago, hdporter said:

 

Just double checking that the offer was a "pre-approval".  I believe you if you're confident, but around the same time-frame, I received a "pre-authorized to apply" invitation.

 

btw, I'm amazed with the patience you've extended them in the course of your exchanges with them. 

 

Yeah, it was definitely a pre-approval.  First they did the PRM soft pull on EQ, then the letter came.  They used the exact term "pre-approved" and then at the bottom was the Prescreen & Opt-Out Notice.

 

I'm also surprised at my patience with them.  🤣

 

It helps that I have a special contact at PenFed where I can vent my anger.  😁

Edited by PotO
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1 hour ago, EvilMan said:

Penfed is penfed They really want to target the state-side military only. 

 

PenFed is only using the name "Pentagon" to suck in new members, most of which are not military.  It is no longer required to even have a military nexus to join PenFed.

 

As for preferring only stateside military, that's an absurd notion.  They have no idea who is stationed overseas or who is stationed in CONUS.  Even if they knew, military personnel rotate periodically so the stateside member today is overseas tomorrow.

 

PenFed simply targets suckers.  Suckers that either cannot or do not want to transfer more than $2,000 per day out of their PenFed checking account to savings.  Suckers that don't want to have access to their assigned credit limit for at least ten days after they've paid their balance off in cash.  

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5 hours ago, EvilMan said:

The ten day hold does go away after awhile. I know new members for like 3 months have BS holds. 

 

After HUCA with about 6 brain-dead customer service representatives, I reached one who explained the holds during the first 90 days.  Although I have never seen this at any other financial institution, I can almost understand the holds on payments received via ACH, BillPay or check as those are subject to bouncing, although I think that it would be rare.  But what Neanderthal thinks fuccing cash can bounce?  Well, I'll tell you who ... the Neanderthals at PenFed.

 

And just when you think Neanderthals can stoop only so low with their shyte-for-brain ideas, PenFed is breaking records.  I set up a BillPay to pay my Chase credit card under $125.  The fooking morons at PenFed, unlike every other bank on this planet, makes you input the payee's physical address even though they will be making the payment electronically.  WTF carries Chase's payment address around with them?  I had to log into Chase.com to look up an old statement to find the payment address that the shytebirds at PenFed wanted.  Finally, I had the payee entered successfully.  

 

So, I made the payment to Chase.  Well, no!  Immediately after clicking "submit" an error message popped up.  The fooking Neanderthals at PenFed at it yet again!!  "Due to our transaction limits, we need to send this payment as a check."  

 

Seriously, it would be a major improvement if Krusty the Clown ran PenFed.  

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1 hour ago, EvilMan said:

Think of it this way. They willing to get you some credit love, but then they want tog et to know you better before they let you go hog wild. 

 

No, that's the wrong way to think about it.

 

The credit love they give you is irrelevant.  First of all, whether you have their credit card or not they still come up with absurd policies on moving money between your PenFed accounts and using their BillPay Service.  

 

They gave a $15k credit limit.  I don't know about you, but in my book $15k is akin to food stamp money.  I've had higher starting limits from virtually every bank and even credit union in the nation and absolutely none of them pull weak-minded crap about holding cash payments for ten days.  I have yet to find any financial institution that requires your initial use of their BillPay Service to prevent electronic payments.

 

PenFed has mental issues.  

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1 hour ago, hegemony said:

yah but then they stop at 50k and have nerfed the rewards over the years.

 

Exactly.  Even $50k is sooooo subprime.  As much as our Official CB Porch Pirate hates Navy Federal, at least you can easily get to their max of $80k and they don't get all whiny little beach over Egyptians.  

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2 hours ago, hegemony said:

yah but then they stop at 50k and have nerfed the rewards over the years.

 

By the way, the 2% at PenFed is no better than what is provided by Citi Double Cash.  The only difference is that PenFed has no FTF, but there's even a glitch in that.  Whereas most credit card companies taking your pending foreign charge and post it within two days or, at the most four, PenFed can take a week.  This means that during the time it takes to post, the exchange rate can go out of whack and end up costing you more.  

 

Also, while I was impressed that they show your cash back as charges post, I was naive.  You can see a charge post for, say, $1,000 and immediately see your $20 cash rewards.  You can even go and request those rewards as a statement credit right away.  The trick, though, is that while you think in a couple of days you will see your $20 credit, the fact is that you will not.  The credit will not actually post until your next statement date.  That gives PenFed time to come up with a weak-minded brain-dead excuse to claw it back.  

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On 11/8/2020 at 6:46 AM, PotO said:

The other day I get a call from their security folks asking about a $99 payment three weeks ago to Verizon.  After asking if I made the charge, I tell him I did.  Then he asks, "Were you forced or coerced into making this charge?"

 

Yes. They threatened to disconnect my phone if I didn't pay.

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5 hours ago, discopanda said:

I’m not a fan of PenFed. They screw up all the time, granted, they always seem to make it right in the end but they have screwed me over a couple of times this year.


I agree.  They do tend to fix the issues, but IMO the issues should never have occurred in the first place.

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BTW, had a very productive discussion with a friend at PenFed last night.  We went through a laundry list of issues and it looks like they can be resolved.

 

As @EvilMan has mentioned, many are what can be termed security issues.  The only thing that is strange is that I have never experienced these security measures with any other financial institution.  I can see two possible reasons why this happens with PenFed.  One is because they are a bit more paranoid because as a non-profit they don't have the built-in budget for fraud losses.  The other, and IMO most likely, is that they were sold these security concepts by their vendor.  Probably a vendor that needs to continually pull theories out of their butt to stay relevant and continue to earn money as their vendor.  
 

One or two issues I had were simply technical glitches that they had and were quickly fixed.  
 

I'll stay onboard to see how things develop.  

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1 hour ago, PotO said:

BTW, had a very productive discussion with a friend at PenFed last night.  We went through a laundry list of issues and it looks like they can be resolved.

 

As @EvilMan has mentioned, many are what can be termed security issues.  The only thing that is strange is that I have never experienced these security measures with any other financial institution.  I can see two possible reasons why this happens with PenFed.  One is because they are a bit more paranoid because as a non-profit they don't have the built-in budget for fraud losses.  The other, and IMO most likely, is that they were sold these security concepts by their vendor.  Probably a vendor that needs to continually pull theories out of their butt to stay relevant and continue to earn money as their vendor.  
 

One or two issues I had were simply technical glitches that they had and were quickly fixed.  
 

I'll stay onboard to see how things develop.  

I've made jokes on this thread but I realize this is important to you. Must be frustrating being overseas in China conducting banking and credit increases.

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1 hour ago, StarkRaven$ said:

I've made jokes on this thread but I realize this is important to you. Must be frustrating being overseas in China conducting banking and credit increases.


Don't worry.  I like your sense of humor.  🥰

 

Banking and credit in China is relatively simple and easy.  As hard as it is to believe, the Chinese have their shyte together with banking and credit.

 

The problem is banking from China.  I get the paranoia with traffic coming from a Chinese IP address.  I could use the US network at work, but then that's a federal / military criminal offense and I prefer to stay out of jail (though sometimes with a crazy wife, jail seems an attractive option).  So I use a VPN.  I have never had issues connecting with a VPN that the stupid OTP fase couldn't solve.  Except with PenFed.  Heck, even using a Chinese IP address has never caused me problems with any financial institution except Navy Federal and, of course, PenFed.  
 

And then there's the math.  Chinese banks never make math mistakes.  Imagine with your US bank you have a credit limit of $15k and you have $5k in outstanding posted charges and $1k in pending charges yet to be posted.  You then make a cash payment on your CC account of $5k.  Two days later (and WTF does it even take 2 days?), the payment posts and your available credit is $9k.  What kind of freaking math is this?  Now, I might be a Jarhead and not as highly educated as @hegemony, but my math isn't too bad.  And then there's the simple fact that God did invent calculators.  
 

I just like things to work like they are supposed to work.  If every other bank lets you move more than $2,000 between your accounts at the same bank, I don't like it when all of a sudden one pops up that has that crazy restriction.  When I have time and want to do my accounting, I don't want one bank to all of a sudden tell me I have to wait a day because they have system issues -- all the time.  
 

We need reliable, trustworthy and dependable financial partners.  We don't need crack hoes with their hand in your pocket.  

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