Alliant Credit Union Vs. Navy Federal: Comparing Credit Unions

When it comes to choosing a credit union, two popular options are Alliant Credit Union and Navy Federal Credit Union. Both offer similar services like checking and savings accounts, credit cards, auto loans, mortgages, and more. But how do you decide which one is the better fit for your needs?

Here’s an in-depth comparison of Alliant Credit Union and Navy Federal to help you determine the pros and cons of each.

A Brief Comparison Table

FeatureAlliant Credit UnionNavy Federal Credit Union
Membership EligibilityOpen to allMilitary, veterans, families
Number of Branches80+260+
Fee-Free ATMs80,000+650,000+
Checking AccountsFree rewards checkingFree everyday & rewards checking
Savings Account APYUp to 0.65%Up to 0.75%
Loan RatesBetter auto ratesBetter mortgage rates
Credit CardsRewards cards onlyRewards & cash back cards
Customer ServiceGoodExcellent
Digital ServicesFunctional online/mobileOutdated online/mobile
Overdraft OptionsLimitedMore options

Overview Of Alliant Credit Union

Alliant Credit Union

Alliant Credit Union is one of the largest credit unions in the U.S. with over 500,000 members. It offers a full suite of banking products including checking, savings, money market, and certificates of deposit. Alliant has a free checking account with unlimited rebates for out-of-network ATM fees and a high-yield savings account.

Alliant offers competitive rates on auto loans, mortgages, personal loans, and credit cards. Its credit cards have no annual fee and rewards programs. Alliant provides online and mobile banking services for convenient account access. It has 80,000+ fee-free ATMs and shared branches nationwide.

Overall, Alliant Credit Union appeals to those looking for a full-service credit union with great rates and minimal fees. The online accessibility makes it a nice option whether you live near a branch or not.

Overview Of Navy Federal Credit Union

Navy Federal Credit Union is the largest credit union in the world with over 10 million members. Membership is primarily open to military personnel, veterans, and their families. Navy Federal offers a full range of financial services including checking, savings, loans, credit cards, mortgages, investing, and more.

Navy Federal is known for excellent customer service, competitive rates and minimal fees. It offers checking and savings accounts with no monthly fees. Its credit cards have no annual fees and offer rewards programs. Navy Federal has 260+ branches and 650,000 fee-free ATMs nationwide for convenient access.

The credit union appeals most to military members, veterans, and their families looking for a reliable institution with branches on many military bases. But it offers services that can benefit anyone looking for a full-service credit union.

Also Read: Comparison Between Rocket Mortgage And Wells Fargo

Pros And Cons Of Alliant Credit Union And Navy Federal Credit Union

Alliant Credit Union Pros

Some of the key advantages of Alliant Credit Union include:

  • Membership open to everyone
  • High interest rates on savings and CDs
  • Free rewards checking account with ATM fee rebates
  • 80,000+ fee-free ATMs for convenient access
  • Full suite of loans and credit cards available
  • Accessible online and mobile banking services
  • Good customer service reputation

The open membership means anyone can join Alliant and take advantage of the competitive interest rates on deposit accounts. Having robust online and mobile banking makes Alliant accessible whether you live near a branch or not.

Alliant Credit Union Cons

Some potential downsides of Alliant Credit Union:

  • Limited branch locations (80+)
  • No cash deposits without teller
  • Low interest on checking accounts
  • Website and app could use modern updates
  • Customer service has long hold times

The lack of widespread branch locations makes in-person banking less convenient with Alliant. To deposit cash, you need to visit a branch or ATM. Interest earned on checking accounts is lower than savings and CD options. The website and apps are functional but look a bit dated compared to some competitors.

Navy Federal Credit Union

Navy Federal Credit Union Pros

Here are some of the biggest advantages of Navy Federal Credit Union:

  • Membership open to military community
  • More branch locations (260+)
  • Excellent customer service reputation
  • Great interest rates on savings and CDs
  • Solid rewards credit card options
  • Checking accounts with no monthly fees
  • Access to investment and retirement services
  • Financial education resources for members

Navy Federal excels when it comes to branch access for in-person banking and customer service ratings. It offers very competitive deposit account interest rates along with solid credit card rewards programs. Navy Federal goes beyond just banking to provide investing, retirement services, auto buying programs, and financial education.

Navy Federal Credit Union Cons

Some of the disadvantages of Navy Federal Credit Union include:

  • Membership limited to military community
  • Website and apps need refresh
  • Limited no-fee ATM locations (650,000)
  • Fewer types of credit cards offered
  • Underwriting can be stricter on loans
  • Limited extended overdraft options

The biggest drawback with Navy Federal is that you need military ties to become a member and access its products and services. The website and mobile apps are somewhat outdated in appearance compared to newer fintech options.

Navy Federal has a decent ATM network but not as robust as Alliant.

Also Read: Comparison Between Wells Fargo And Regions Bank.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Is Navy Federal better than other credit unions?

Navy Federal consistently rates at or near the top when comparing the best credit unions. The combination of excellent customer service, competitive deposit/loan rates, fee-free ATMs, financial literacy resources and more set Navy Federal apart. For eligible members, Navy Federal is hard to top as a full-service credit union.

What’s so special about Navy Federal Credit Union?

A few things make Navy Federal stand out above other credit unions:
Its focus on serving military families with tailored products/services
Outstanding customer service reputation
More branch locations on/near military bases
Access to affordable loans, credit cards, mortgages, etc.
Free everyday banking with checking/savings accounts
Financial education and mentorship for military members
Navy Federal goes above and beyond with programs dedicated to support military members and veterans achieve financial security. The credit union has rightly earned trust and loyalty within the armed forces community.

Is Navy Federal the best bank to bank with?

For members of the military community, Navy Federal is hands down one of the best banks to do your personal and family banking. The combination of great rates, minimal fees, excellent customer service and accessibility makes Navy Federal a top choice for banking and financial services among its membership base.

Which is the best credit union to use?

The “best” credit union depends a lot on eligibility and location. Top-rated options include Navy Federal for military families, Alliant Credit Union for digital banking, Pentagon Federal for government employees, State Employees’ Credit Union for state workers, and more.
Compare membership criteria, branch locations, interest rates, fees, and accessibility options when choosing a credit union to ensure it aligns with your needs and preferences.

Also watch this video about Alliant Credit Union!


In summary, here are some key takeaways when comparing Alliant and Navy Federal:

  • Membership – Alliant open to all, Navy Federal for military
  • Branches – Navy Federal has more locations
  • ATMs – Alliant offers more fee-free ATM access
  • Deposit Accounts – Both offer solid checking/savings rates
  • Loan Rates – Alliant has better auto rates, Navy Federal better mortgages
  • Credit Cards – Both have decent rewards card options
  • Customer Service – Navy Federal is more acclaimed

For most consumers, Alliant Credit Union offers a great combination of high interest rates, minimal fees, and digital accessibility. Membership is open to anyone looking for a full-service credit union.

Also Read: Comparison Between Tiaa And Fidelity Retirement Plans.

For military members, veterans, and their families, Navy Federal Credit Union is hard to beat. The customer service, branch access, and account/loan rates are tailored specifically to meet the needs of the military community.

When comparing the two, weigh factors like membership eligibility, branch locations, interest rates, fees, and accessibility based on your banking preferences. Both Alliant and Navy Federal are great options that offer similar services with a few key differences.

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