Consumers Can Stay Safe and Conduct Financial Transactions
With social distancing and business shut downs becoming the new normal during the Coronavirus pandemic, Apple Federal Credit Union (FCU), which has 21 branches throughout Northern Virginia, is offering solutions on how consumers can safely conduct banking business without fear of contracting the disease.
"Our goal is to keep our members and our staff safe during the spread of the Coronavirus, as we continue to conduct business on behalf of our members," says Jeffery Long, CPA, Chief Lending Officer at Apple Federal Credit Union. "We want to make consumers aware of the many options available to them that do not require going into a credit union or bank lobby and being around people."
Consumers should consider these options when conducting their bank business:
Digital Banking: Credit union and bank mobile apps and online banking are great options for many transactions, such as inquiring about balances, transferring money and paying bills. With secure technology, consumers can even deposit checks using their mobile banking app via their cell phones. Digital banking can be conducted without leaving your home.
Drive Thru Services: With many credit union and bank lobbies closed during this pandemic, consumers should consider using drive thrus to conduct business. Consumers can deposit and cash checks, make loan and credit card payments, and withdraw cash. In addition, some institutions, such as Apple, offer members in need of debit cards an instant-issued card.
Mobile Payment Apps: Consumers should consider using mobile payment apps like Apple Pay, Square Cash, Venmo and PayPal, as well as debit cards and credit cards for purchases. And many big retailers and smaller merchants are not only accepting these forms of payment; they are actively encouraging their use. This is expected to continue, especially since there are reports about how physical forms of money could be contaminated by the coronavirus.
Call Center: For consumers who want or need to talk to a live person, they can do so via their credit union or bank call center. Specialists are standing by and are able to help with any kind of banking business consumers may need. Consumers can find support from a call center similar to what they can find in the branch lobby.
Waiving ATM fees: Ask your credit union or bank if they are waiving ATM fees. At Apple, for instance, they are being waived through the end of May. Members can use any of the 53,000 ATMs nationwide fee free.
Emergency Loan Relief: Consumers should check to see what emergency relief their credit union or bank is offering. Look for special emergency relief loans, skipping payment options and penalty-fee waivers for those who may be late on a loan payment.
Do Not Withdraw Large Amounts of Money: Consumers do not need to carry or store large amounts of cash. Banks and credit unions are federally insured up to $250,000 (IRAs are an additional $250,000) by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the National Credit Union Administration, respectively.
Clean Your Cards and Hands: After swiping a credit or debit card at a store, make sure to wipe the card with a disinfectant wipe. Also wash your hands after handling them.
To learn more, visit www.AppleFCU.org.
About Apple Federal Credit Union
Established in 1956, Apple FCU is ranked as a top 100 credit union nationwide, serving nearly 220,000 members with $3 billion in assets. As a not-for-profit, member-owned financial cooperative, Apple FCU serves a diverse community of local education systems and anyone who lives or works in Fairfax, Frederick (VA) and Prince William counties. Members enjoy competitive rates, as well as fair and honest products and services, within a trusted environment. The Credit Union is fully committed to making a positive impact within the region, not only in financial services, but also in community involvement, financial literacy and charitable giving. AppleFCU.org. Federally insured by NCUA. Equal Opportunity Lender.