Checking account for cadets

Discussion in 'Coast Guard Academy - USCGA' started by Scottymatt, Apr 28, 2019.

  1. Scottymatt

    Scottymatt New Member

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    My daughter is member of CGA class of 2023. Any recommendations from other parents or cadets regarding best checking account option? Do mostcadets use the Nav Federal Credit Union?
     
  2. ekb1398

    ekb1398 Member

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    Almost all use Navy Fed of USAA. If not having a physical branch doesn't bother you, I can't recommend USAA enough. If that's important, then there is a branch of Navy Fed here on base, although they will generally support/give financial advice to any cadet which is very impressive to me. Most cadets will end up opening a checking account with USAA at some point anyways, because you need to have direct deposit into a USAA Checking Account to apply for the Career Starter Loan that USAA offers and most cadets take to pay for cars, furniture, deposits on rent, and so on and so forth. You can't really go wrong either way.
     
  3. MtJo

    MtJo Member

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    That is where my son opened an account. He set up the account while there for the AEP. They let him set up a checking and savings account with only a $20 deposit. So he should be ready to go. He was pleased with the service he received. He did keep his hometown bank. Not sure how long he will keep the dual accounts.
     
  4. corescue59

    corescue59 USCGA Admissions Partner 5-Year Member

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    Our son uses USAA for his checking account. He also has his renters insurance and car insurance (dormant for now) with them as well. They are great at bundling things and giving you a discount.
    He will also be set when they get their loan in I think 2C year.
     
  5. future.mil.mom

    future.mil.mom Member

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    So any info on how to contact the "Navy Fed of USAA"? My DS currently has no independent checking account so I would love to just set up his independent account with whatever all new cadets tend to use. He has to complete the mandatory "Cadet Pay Forms" and he can't until he sets up a checking account. With that in mind, any advice on the best way to contact USAA and get things set up ASAP so he can fill out these forms. Thanks!
     
  6. Capt MJ

    Capt MJ 10-Year Member

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    There was just another thread on this recently.

    Your DS should call USAA at their published numbers, and have a scanned copy of whatever constitutes his permit to report/appointment docs ready to email as proof of his future eligibility.

    There is nothing wrong with NFCU. Many sea service people have both, and settle into s routine of which they use for what. It’s doable to switch Direct Deposit during the academic year if desired.
     
  7. StPaulDad

    StPaulDad Member

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    I think that should have been an Or. USAA is a thing and Navy Federal Credit Union is another thing and R being altogether too close to F on the keyboard is yet another thing.
     
  8. DadofddMBM

    DadofddMBM New Member

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    As Capt MJ said above, USAA on the phone is very helpful. And with documentation can get you set up with checking acct. However, if your cadet is not yet 18, they can not set up an independent acct. They told my daughter to call back on her birthday and they would help get everything setup. Birthday is next week.
     
  9. Scottymatt

    Scottymatt New Member

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    Thank you to all who responded. Really appreciate your perspectives!
     
  10. future.mil.mom

    future.mil.mom Member

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    Well...so far trying to get "verified" as a first year cadet at USAA is not quite as simple as it would seem. My DS was on the phone 4 separate times today trying to successfully give them their necessary documents just to verify he will be entering the military. Apparently this needs to be done prior to opening an account (understandably). They want his....

    "Leave & Earnings Statement, Military Orders, and Government-issued ID - driver's license (front and back), ID card or passport, in color".

    They don't seem to have much experience with cadets entering SAs which surprises me since there are 5 SAs. My son had to explain why as a 19 year old not yet reporting he wouldn't have a "leave and earnings statement" and his "military orders" at this point are just the congratulations letter stating the report date of July 1st and his signed appointment acceptance contract. He tried uploading on the website. He then tried uploading on the app on his phone and he still just received an "incomplete documents" notice sent via email. I guess this means yet another phone call to them. This has been very frustrating.

    To fill out the Pay Delivery Worksheet, doesn't my DS need to establish his own checking and saving accounts with USAA (or similar military banking service organization)? Currently he only has a joint savings account at Bank of America with my husband and me. Any advice is appreciated.
     
  11. KP Eng

    KP Eng Member

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    Any bank will do, although they did want it to be a checking account last year. DD was asked for a voided check. We set her up with a student checking account attached to ours (not mil associated) prior to swab summer and used that for the forms. Both USAA and Navy Federal had tables set up the day before reporting, encouraging people to open accounts. Your DD/DS can always open the account then and change the deposits to that new account after swab summer. If I remember correctly, it took a fair bit of time until all of the new cadets were entered into the pay system and began receiving deposits.
     
  12. future.mil.mom

    future.mil.mom Member

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    Thanks so much for that info! It's good to know we can just use our existing family accounts for now.

    It looks like I spoke a bit too soon about my DS's USAA status. This morning he just received a follow up email saying he has been approved to open accounts because they did, in fact, verified him.

    A friend who has a DS that is a recent graduate from the CGA said that we should use Navy Federal since they have a branch right on campus supposedly making it easier for cadets to access $ and their accounts while on campus. Is this true? Or should my DS just move forward with USAA since his verification has been approved? Or perhaps just use our current bank accounts for now for purposes of completing the form? Sorry for all the questions...just want to do the easiest and most convenient avenue for my DS.
     
  13. Capt MJ

    Capt MJ 10-Year Member

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    USAA reimburses ATM fees at any ATM up to a certain amount, which is more than enough to cover the usual number of ATM visits in a month. So, no out-of-pocket ATM fees, making it same as if he used NFCU.
     
  14. ekb1398

    ekb1398 Member

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    That's really all personal preference. If your DS thinks they need or will want to make use of a brick and mortar bank, then NFCU is the way to go. Otherwise, they're about equal. What @Capt MJ said above is true, but not all plans do this - I use an ATM once in a blue moon, so I chose the USAA checking account that gives 10 cents back for every transaction over a dollar, which doesn't include waived ATM fees. Combined with the cash back credit card, I actually make a decent amount of money back so it's well worth it for me to give up the ATM fees.
     
  15. 21MomSalute

    21MomSalute USCGA Admissions Partner

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    I recall Navy Federal hosting a booth at Swearing In and also at Parent's Weekend. They offered $50 if you 0pened an account.
     
  16. AuxNoob

    AuxNoob CGA Admissions Partner 5-Year Member

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    It has been a few years since DS was a swab. Navy Fed and USAA both had tables on R-Day. Both my sons are Active Duty, one commissioned and one enlisted. Both had USAA, and I think both have switched to NFCU. Part of that is due to USAA stumbling through the shutdown. They really stuck it to the Coast Guard (eventually came around, but too late for many), while NFCU was right there for USCG members when they needed it. Also, I think NFCU has more branches overseas in Navy bases. If Coasties are overseas, usually they are not far from a Navy base. This has been a help as one of ours is in Bahrain for the next 50 weeks (2 down, but who's counting?).