State of the Union: Bluebird, Serve, and Go Bank Reloads at Walmart with Gift Cards as of May 30, 2014

UPDATE 6/20/14: Do not use OVGCs or VGCs at Walmart.  Use other gift cards from other banks.
GC WM BB

State of the Union: Bluebird, Serve, and Go Bank Reloads at Walmart with Gift Cards as of May 30, 2014

First off, I want to thank all of you who commenting on my post from this morning ((Rumor) Walmart Updates Point of Sale (POS) Software, Making Bluebird/Serve/Go Bank Reloads Difficult) and shared their results, both successes and failures.  Based on your feedback, I can generalize what works and what doesn’t.  I have tried to make this as clear as possible, so here goes…

If you have $200 gift cards from Staples, Staples.com, Office Depot, or Office Max, your gift card reloads should work just as they always have.  You can load these gift cards at the Money Center ATMs/Kiosks, at the Money Center Department, or by going to a regular checkout lane.

These gift cards are issued by Gift Card Mall, which uses Metabank, therefore, any Visa or MasterCard gift card issued by Metabank should work as of today (May 30).

$200 Staples Gift Cards

The $500 Visa Gift Card (below right) is available at several grocery and convenience stores.  Most people reported no problem loading them to their Bluebird, Serve, or Go Bank cards, so they seem to work the same as always.  The gift cards come from My Gift Card Site, which uses US Bank, therefore, any Visa or MasterCard gift card issued by US Bank should work as of today (May 30).  You can load these gift cards at the Money Center ATMs/Kiosks, at the Money Center Department, or by going to a regular checkout lane.

$500 OVGC and VGC

One Vanilla Gift Cards (OVGCs, above left) seem to be the cause of a lot of frustration at Walmart.  Before today, these were the easiest gift cards to use to load to Bluebird, Serve, or Go Bank.  All you had to do was purchase them (at CVS or other retailers), drive over to Walmart, swipe the card, enter any 4 digit PIN, and be on your way.  It was so easy that I was able to complete the entire process in under 10 minutes (read How Fast can you Manufacture Spend?  Under 10 Minutes with CVS and Walmart).

As of today (May 30), Walmart has made our lives a little bit more complicated by requiring a few extra steps to load these gift cards to our Bluebird, Serve, or Go Bank cards.  Some people have reported that a signature box pops up after swiping the card, while others get an error message stating that credit cards cannot be used.  In order to get around that, you will have to be fast.  Swipe the card and look for a small yellow dialog box that pops up on the credit card reader.  Press the yellow “Change Payment Method” button, then select “Debit/ATM”, choose “No Cash Back,” then enter your 4 digit PIN.  That should work.

If you do not see the “Change Payment Method” button, press the red or yellow buttons below the credit card reader right after swiping the gift card.  That should bring up other payment methods including the “Debit/ATM” option.  Then follow the above instructions.

BB5

For those lucky few with access to working Money Center ATMs/Kiosks, you shouldn’t have any problems loading gift cards to your Bluebird, Serve, or Go Bank cards.  It seems that the latest Point of Sale (POS) software update has not effected gift card loading.  Therefore, continue using the Money Center ATM/Kiosk as you always have.

BB WM ATM

If you have any questions, please leave a comment below.  Have a great weekend everyone!

423 thoughts on “State of the Union: Bluebird, Serve, and Go Bank Reloads at Walmart with Gift Cards as of May 30, 2014

  1. BG

    My experience today:

    I just tried to load Serve at two different Walmarts with One Vanilla. The first one had the yellow “change payment type” button pop up so I selected it, then pushed debit with no cash back. I got the infamous “alternate payment required” message and transaction declined. I was at a check- out lane as there are no kiosks at either of these Walmarts.

    Walmart number 2: The yellow button popped up for a micro-second each time and I was sure I pushed it at least once but it would never register. The signature line would always pop up and you know what that means: Declined.

    I even tried to use the card at a self check-out to buy some stuff and in debit mode it flat out declined the card after I entered my pin.

    Fortunately I only bought two of these OV cards for a total of $1000. I will try to find a real Walmart with the kiosk and see if that works out better.

    Reply
      1. Winston

        I tried Metabank GC to load Bluebird on Dec 26th via kiosk and entered my PIN, but it would not allow me to load my Bluebird. The cashier lines were super long, so I didn’t want to get into that line.

        Reply
        1. Hoang

          Winston,

          I never had problems loading Metabank Visa GC to BB. Are you sure your GC has default pin numbers is the last 4 digits or you have to call to set the pin number. Also check that you hit the $5000 limit for the month.

          Reply
          1. Winston

            Hi Hoang, thanks for your reply. I set my PIN online and also, this was my first time loading to Bluebird so the limit wouldn’t be an issue yet.

            When was the last time you loaded Bluebird? Was it at a kiosk or a cashier?

          2. Hoang

            Hi Winston,

            The last time I loaded to BB on 12/24 at the Kiosk and few days before I loaded with cashier. One time I had an issue with kiosk and I went to cashier and no problem. I believe sometime the guy before may already load $1500 to machine. I had tried both with the cashiers at Money Center and at the regular lines. Usually the regular cashier line was not long. I also sometime bought bananas and after paid for I asked her to load money to my BB.

  2. KMGB

    You mention specifically $200 gift cards from Staples and $500 cards available at various retailers, so I wonder if there are issues using variable load gift cards. I understand that your readership are primarily people trying to earn the most points on their rewards cards, but I currently don’t want to have quite so much money potentially tied up in gift cards and on BlueBird/Serve, so I wonder if you’ve had any experience with variable load gift cards?

    Reply
    1. Grant

      Variable load GCs ($20-$500) can be bought at many places, except office supply stores. You can buy $500 GCs at grocery stores, pharmacies, and some malls.

      Reply
      1. Winston

        In addition to my previous comment above, my Metabank GC was a variable card and not sure if that had anything to do with why Bluebird wouldn’t allow the load at the kiosk.

        Reply
  3. TJ

    Hi Grant,

    I was reading limits for Serve. When you load at WM with a visa GC from staples, is it a limit of $200/day? I have 2x $200 staples visa GC…if I go to WM, can i load both in one visit, or $200 that day and the other 200 the following day?

    I’m just confuse from reading people loading more than 200 but serve having a per day limit.

    Reply
    1. Grant

      Serve has a few different daily limits. For in store reloads at Walmart, you can load up to $2,500 per day. For online debit and credit card loads, the limit is $200 per day.

      Reply
  4. lady

    I have VGC it says Sunrise Bank, pin is automatically the last four of the card. when trying to load BB asking for another pin? Plz help newbie here…

    Reply
    1. Grant

      I don’t have any experience using VGCs from Sunrise Bank. If you can’t load to Bluebird, you will just have to liquidate the card another way.

      Reply
      1. lady cooper

        any suggestions??? Any help would be greatly appreciated as I have no idea what im doing im learning… guess im too late lol

        Reply
          1. Hoang

            If you are Costco member, you may use to buy Costco Cash card and give/sell back to your friends/relatives who are not Costco member but like to use Costco sometime.

        1. CUJO

          I did this today. Bought a $500 Sunrise Bank VGC at WM with Chase Sap. Pref., then immediately went and bought a $499.20 money order. Worked like a charm.

          Reply
          1. Hoang

            They let you pay by credit card? You also can buy $1000 MO and tell them you have 2 $500 debit card and the fees you will pay by cash.

          2. Cujo

            The cashier scanned the GC, I swiped my CC, they asked if it was debit, I just said yes to see what would happen, and it worked. Then walked over to the mny cntr and got a MO

  5. Eric

    If I have a Serve Softcard, does it have to say “debit” on it to be able to load Gift Card balances to it?

    I have a Serve Softcard, but it doesn’t say “debit” on it.

    Trying to increase my MS spending and will start by buying the Staples $200 GC, but just wanted to confirm that I’ll be able to load it at Walmart if my Serve card doesn’t day “Debit” on it.

    Many thanks,

    Eric

    Reply
    1. Grant

      All Bluebird/Redbird/Serve cards can be loaded with gift cards. It doesn’t matter if it says Debit on the card or the Visa/MasterCard gift card. Good luck with your $200 VGC!

      Reply
      1. Eric

        Thank you Grant for the quick response! I will order one of those $200 VGC’s from Staples.com.

        Btw- Do you know if those can be bought at any local Staples, or do they need to be purchased off the online store?

        -Eric

        Reply
          1. Winston

            The real question is what stores allow the Serve cards to be loaded with gift cards. I tried with debit Visa card and it would not allow it. So frustrating that it is hit and miss. Should all have the same rules and abilities.

          2. Winston

            Metabank. I bought my giftcards at the Simon Mall in person and have been using them via evolvemoney.com to pay certain bills. I read that Family Dollar stores allow loading from GC to Serve, but it showed as a credit card and just wasn’t allowed for me.

            I also tried at WM Money Center ATM machine too. Just feel like it is random, based on what city you’re in.

          3. Grant

            You might have to set a PIN on those gift cards before you try to use them at Family Dollar and Walmart. Hopefully you can liquidate the gift cards you currently have on hand.

          4. Hoang

            I never have to set the pin number with Simon Visa GC since they switched over Metabank. I had been bought 5 $500 GC and used them to load to BB from kiosks, cashiers and money center without any problems. I had the problem with Kiosks couple time due to someone before me already loaded money in BB.

          5. Grant

            Thanks for the data point, Hoang. Sometimes gift cards just don’t work. When that happens, you just have to try again at a different time.

  6. John

    Anybody tried the T-Mobile prepaid visa card? Can we buy reloadit cards from safeways or other grocery stores using cc and load onto it?

    Reply
    1. Grant

      Technically yes, Safeway does sell ReloadIt packs, but most enforce cash only unless you get a cashier who will let you pay with a credit card.

      Reply
  7. Derek

    Hello Grant, are we able to load Serve with Visa Gift Card via WM kiosk/ATM machine? I usually load it with cashier but lately was told it only allows one swipe per day.

    Reply
  8. Sho'nuff

    Hi Grant,

    Any updates on what works at WM these days? I have a Serve card and want to get $500 GC or whatever will be allowed to work and load $1500 total. I live in Oahu and the WM does have a kiosk but I want to try to figure out what cards actually work. I have seen people say VGC no longer work at WM but I see WM sells the reloadable Vanilla cards. Is it better to find Meta or US Bank cards? Not sure where I can buy those, are these at Staples? Any help would be appreciated for this noob :)

    Reply

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