If you follow any other points and miles blogs, then you have probably heard about the Bluebird card. I haven’t written about it here yet though and it is too awesome to not talk about.
Bluebird is a new prepaid debit card backed by American Express and Walmart. Prepaid debit cards are reloadable gift cards that you can “load” with funds then once you use those funds for purchases, “reload” by a variety of methods. There are ways to reload using your miles earning credit card which we will cover in a later article that make this card incredibly valuable. Think about tens of thousands of miles per month. Think about getting miles for your rent or mortgage payments, student loan payments, electric bill payments and things that were historically not possible. Here is a video Amex put together on it.
Features of Bluebird
- No credit check or credit pull needed – Anyone can get a Bluebird!
- Almost no fees – High fees have been the problem with prepaid cards in the past but with the backing of American Express and Walmart they have gotten rid of almost all of the annoying fees. No transaction fees, no foreign transaction fees, no load or withdrawal fees, and no ATM fees with direct deposit.
- Online account access via the web and smartphone apps – See all of your transactions and authorizations in real time. In addition, you can remotely deposit checks to your bluebird account using the app.
- Free bill pay to anyone – Pay up to $10,000 / month to vendors in their system and up to $5000 a month to anyone!
- Free transfers to and from your bank account – Checking and Savings accounts can be linked
- Free ATM access at Walmart and a network of fee free ATMs – Free with a direct deposit or paypal deposit. Limits of $500 per day and $2000 per month.
- Ability to reload at Walmart registers with your debit card or by reload cards you can purchase elsewhere – Reloads are limited to $1000/day and $5,000 per month.
- Personalized Card registered to your address – Gift cards have always been problematic to use online because many online merchants require your billing address to match the one on file with the bank who issued the card. Bluebird takes care of this and you can use it anywhere!
How to get Bluebird
Say “no” to Did you purchase a Starter Card at Walmart? Then fill in the rest of the form with your information.
One the next screen, create a username, password, PIN (to be used for ATM access so remember it), SSN (they will NOT run a credit check though so don’t worry), and a security question and answer.
That’s it! Within about 3 business days you should get your permanent bluebird card in the mail and you are in business! In our next article we will talk about how and where to buy reload cards using your miles earning credit card and some of the best cards to use.