It all started when I saw an advert on Amazon discussing how "great this card is." I wish I read the reviews of this organization in Yelp, Google, and many other sites. I was naive enough to think they would be a great credit union to join until I was scammed.
I have a near 800 credit score, own a car, never have trouble making any of my payments on all my expenses, and I live in one of the most expensive cities in the country. I jumped on the opportunity when I heard about the lower than 10% APR on PenFed credit cards. What a great way to lower the remaining credit card debt I have (which is less than $3,000). I wasnt military or any of the other categories, so I agreed to pay the $20 donation fee. I assumed there was no way I would get denied, especially since I was PAYING to join.
Big mistake and a waste of perfectly good money. Turns out they denied me very quietly. I received no email, no notice, nothing. I had to call and follow up. The guy on the other end said it was because "...we thought you would have trouble making payments on the loan." 1, I didn't ask for a "loan" and 2, I countered with "Don't you think my high credit score means something about me paying my bills on time?"
Turns out, they can deny you for ANY reason they want, and that's why they charge you a fee in the name of 'charity.' So I asked for my money back and they told me I needed to contact the charity. I contacted the charity and they said "Pen Fed KEEPS the money." So, PenFed is lying about where the money is going. It is NOT going to charity.
$20 might not be a lot of money, but just think of how many others they scam it adds up! If you read around on Yelp and Google, you will find endless stories of people being scammed by their "promise" card.
The good news is, I'm in the process of starting a lawsuit and would like to turn this into a much larger class action suit if anyone is interested in helping all the people who have been scammed.