The $1.7 billion NEFCU in Westbury, N.Y., said it opened a total of 932 accounts last week, nearly two and half times the normal pace.

The Long Island credit union said 165 new accounts were opened on Bank Transfer Day itself and that during the month of October, 2,145 new members joined, a 23% lift over its average monthly volume in 2011 and 34% more than in October 2010.

NEFCU pointed to its free checking account paying 3.5% as a particularly attractive offering to bank customers.

“This GO Green Checking account, which encourages the use of electronic services, was created as a green initiative to create convenience for our members and benefit the environment. Electronic channels like this represent a cost savings for the credit union and we are pleased to pass that savings on to our members so they can earn higher interest on their money,” CEO Edward Paternostro said.  

NEFCU had joined with two other Long Island credit unions – the $4.1 billion Teachers FCU and the $4.3 billion Bethpage FCU – to launch BetterBankingforLongIsland.com.

TFCU said it added 2,216 new accounts in October and 534 in the first five days of November.

Bethpage FCU said it opened 1,471 new checking accounts during its week-long Bank Transfer Day promotion, including 672 on Saturday itself.