Old Oct 25, 2013, 12:21 pm
FlyerTalk Forums Expert How-Tos and Guides
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Read the wiki before posting a question.
It's a literacy test that's easy to pass.

This is the Serve thread. Post questions or information concerning other topics in the appropriate threads elsewhere in this forum.

For additional information on using prepaid debit cards, see PIN available now for Visa/MC prepaid debit cards.

Mentions of Softcard (formerly ISIS) are purely incidental to setting up and using Serve/Softcard. Softcard does not hold money, and you cannot load to it.


You cannot make an ACH pull from Serve. The direct deposit account and routing numbers are for deposits only.

https://www.serve.com/#/add-cash

If your card doesn't say "debit" on the front, it isn't a debit card.


Loads at 7-11 and CVS are cash only. Debit cards are NOT allowed.

Loads at Walmart have been confirmed with debit cards. Self checkout does not work for loading Serve. Many Walmart stores are enforcing a rule against the use of prepaid debit cards when loading, even though the register and the MCE do not enforce. Do not make your prepaid debit cards visible. Show them a bank debit card if asked, then discreetly use your prepaid card when asked to swipe. Otherwise, you may be asked by management to never visit the MC (Walmart Money Center) again to load.

Debit loading at Family Dollar appears to be limited to $500 per day per store total (not per person or per account). Whoever gets there first gets the load for the day. Troubleshooting loading problems at FD


Normal Serve
  • Serve loading via VR/MP or WM/FD load: $2,500/day and $5,000 total per calendar month
  • Online Debit Card Load - $200/day and $1,000/month (NOT a gift card with a PIN that some people call a "Debit card")
  • Online Credit Card Load - $200/day and $1,000/month
  • Checking/Savings Account - $2,000/month
  • Checks - $2,000/day and $10,000/month
  • ATM Withdrawals - $750/day and $2,000/month

You can combine the three methods above and load a total of $7k/month to a single Serve account for miles/points earning purposes, but beware that you're also subject to a $10,000/month add money limit which also includes check deposits, ACH transfers, and Serve transfers.

Serve/Softcard Check if your phone/network is compatible
  • Serve loading via VR/MP or WM/FD load: $2,500/day and $5,000 total per calendar month
  • Online Debit Card Load - $500/day and $1,500/month (NOT a gift card with a PIN that some people call a "Debit card")
  • Online Credit Card Load - $500/day and $1,500/month
  • Checking/Savings Account - $2,000/month
  • Checks - $2,000/day and $10,000/month
  • ATM Withdrawals - $750/day and $2,000/month

You can combine the three methods above and load a total of $8k/month to a single Serve account for miles/points earning purposes, but beware that you're also subject to a $10,000/month add money limit which also includes check deposits, ACH transfers, and Serve transfers.

The SD card in the iPhone case used for Softcard is account specific. Once an account has been registered to a card, it cannot be used for another.

Temp Serve
You can only load a maximum of $500/day, $1000/month on a temporary card. Once you get your permanent card, then you can load more. The initial $500 when you purchase the temp card doesn't count against the $5,000/month load limit.


Online Credit Card Loads
Only one card can be linked at a time.

As of 10/09/14, coding of credit card loads changed. In general, Mastercard and American Express cards post as before; see below for information on point earning. Visa cards transact as a cash advance and, therefore, require available CA limit; although most cards post as a purchase.

The Chase Ink Bold is a charge card and has no cash advance ability.

Treated as purchase, earns cashback/points/miles:
  • Bank of America (FIA) (MasterCard, American Express)
  • Barclaycard (Mastercard, Visa)
  • Capital One (Mastercard, Visa)
  • Chase (MasterCard, Visa)
  • Citi (MasterCard, American Express)
  • Discover

Treated as purchase, but doesn't earn points/miles:
  • American Express (May count toward minimum spend)

Posts as a cash advance:
For online CC/DC loads, the name on the Serve account is supposed to match the name of the primary or joint cardholder. So using someone else's CC/DB card to load a Serve account is not allowed.

Several people have reported no problems with loading with an AU card in the Serve account holder's name. Increase your chances by making sure the AUs social security number is on file with the Credit Card. YMMV.

When adding a new card you will usually need to call Serve Account security (1-800-555-4318) for verification of the new card on the second load try. This verification usually requires uploading of a photo of your ID and the credit card. You may pre-emptively avoid the error by going to the above website, logging in, and uploading a scan of a photo ID and the card you are trying to add. You may call back to expedite approval.


Online Debit Card Loads
For online debit load, only use of bank-issued cards is allowed. The use of pre-paid debit cards (Netspend, Paypower, Univision, Paypal*, etc.) and VGC/MGC/AGCs is not allowed. While initial transactions may work, your account will eventually be flagged.


Switching to Serve or Serve/Softcard
Helpful instruction post, latest. Thanks raeneye.

Also see this thread: Switching from Serve to BlueBird - 31 day wait???

Switching to Serve/Softcard
  1. Call up Bluebird or Serve and close account. Make sure your account is at $0.00 before calling. Just close it, don't ask for a temp Serve or anything. CSR will say account is now closed and you have 30 days to change your mind should you decide to re-open it.
  2. Download the Softcard mobile app from Apple App Store or Google Play Store. If you're an iPhone user you have to buy the NFC CashWrap case from your carrier store.
  3. Launch Softcard Mobile App and create Softcard account. You'll be asked if you want to open a Serve account; Yes you do. Start the registration through Softcard mobile app for a Serve account, once you are finished you will be told you will receive an Email from Amex with your account approval. I waited a few hours and called Serve customer service like the wiki says and completed the registration.
  4. Once I got off the phone with Serve I received an email from Serve where I verified my account and email; at this point Amex Serve is open.
  5. Launch Softcard Mobile app again click add new
  6. Activate card with Softcard and select Amex Serve. Follow the instructions & you're good to add. Once this is complete a Serve Card will populate in Softcard. Must activate physical card to get full load limits. Check account status and it automatically credits to your serve account based on who you signed up with. (Verizon - $25, T-Mobile - $50, AT&T - $30 (For AT&T: Get $15 w/activation. Earn additional $15 w/account replenishment))

Switching from BB to Serve
  1. Login to BB account, bring account balance to Zero, (By Bill Pay, Send money, etc..)
  2. Call BB, tell them that you want to open a serve account and close your current BB account. after they check everything they will say something like: "Your account will be permanently closed after 31 days, you can reopen it within 31 day if you change your mind, and you can apply for your new Serve account now, just make sure use the exact same register info from BB."
  3. at this point BB is closed. next morning, goto CVS and get a temporary Serve card (only with cash), load $500, ($2.95 waived, Yeah!!)
  4. get back home, register temporary Serve online, First error: "phone number already registered, please try a different number" could be the my BB's ghost account still showing up on their system, could be my info is not match my BB's registration? i'm not really sure at this point. What I did is keep the same number but change from Cell phone to home phone. and registration went through
  5. after the register and login, second error: "We're still processing your application. Please check your email for an update"
  6. I have see people on the thread reported waiting for weeks for the same message, So, I pickup the phone and called them, ask them to speed up the process.
  7. CSR, told me that my account went to "account security protection department" transfer me to them.
  8. at account security protection department, they told me need to call back on my phone number which I registered to verify.
  9. after the call back of verification, CSR told me that my new Serve account is active now, email address verification will be send with in 5 minutes, permanent card will be received within 7-10 days.
  10. CSR also told me the I can load and spend on the temporary card, but not bill pay.

The number to call to approve your registration after closing Bluebird: Serve Account security 1-800-555-4318



Loading with debit card at Walmart register
Loads at register over $500 will sometimes trigger ID requirement. There is a limit of four swipes per transaction; this means your card plus three payments.

Training a WM cashier:
  • If the WM cashier doesn't know how to load the card, advise them to enter "70" then press "action code".
  • If you are using a temp card that doesn't have your name on it, you can swipe the card from your side of the terminal. The WM rep never has to touch any of your cards. The screen will say "enter account." That is your prompt to slide the card.
  • The terminal will ask the WM employee if you are loading in multiples of $2000. Advise them to enter "no."
  • Avoid saying gift card. Always refer to your card as a debit card.

Error Messages:
DEBIT NOT AVAILABLE
Received when I used a card I thought I had activated but hadn't.

DEBIT NOT APPROVED
Received when the card's monthly load limit had been reached.

TENDER NOT ALLOWED
Card was incorrectly read, or wrong PIN entered.

HOST TIMEOUT
Connection problems. The GC may be drained but the transaction should reverse itself, and funds will become available again. Try again later.


Using Serve
For online bill pay
  • You can pay the credit card that you used to buy VRs/GCs
  • Error 1302 means that you have 1 pending payment the same amount as the one you just submitted. For example, 1000 bill pay to sapphire preferred from Friday and then on Saturday you submit another bill pay for 1000 to sapphire preferred, you will get this error.
  • Tip: if using online bill pay to the same place multiple times, vary your amounts by $0.01 to make it easier to track since your confirmation number does not match the tracking number on your credit card statement



For bank transfers
Under Settings --> Funding & Transfers --> Bank & Cards --> U.S. Bank Account, you can add your bank info and transfer funds from your Serve card directly to your bank. The bank account must be verified, either by the standard "deposit 2 small sums into your account, such as $0.23 & $0.42" method, or doing an "instant verification" by actually logging into your bank account while still logged into Serve.
===

People with an apartment address can find helpful information quoted in post #8530
Print Wikipost

Serve - Another Paypal/Amazon Payments.

Old Jul 9, 2014, 8:41 am
  #5071  
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 3,471
Originally Posted by unkinected
FYI I've been to 6 different FDs... 2 required manager override, 3 didn't, and 1 wouldn't even let me do it at all.

It's possible that the 3 that didn't maybe will change their process to require overrides... the 2 that did require were the most recent ones I've been to.
Originally Posted by cdancer20
I did multiple loads last week. Unless something has changed this week, none of my loads required a manager approval.
Perhaps its a FD store YMMV and that the store manager determines whether or not a certain dollar threshold requires a manager approval because there doesn't seem to be a consensus or whether or not a manager approval is required. Like I said, most of the FD stores I went to required a manager approval.
ericdabbs is offline  
Old Jul 9, 2014, 8:59 am
  #5072  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Programs: Hyatt Globalist No More..., Hyatt Explorist, Hilton Diamond, SPG Platinum, Marriott Platinum
Posts: 4,375
Originally Posted by ericdabbs
Perhaps its a FD store YMMV and that the store manager determines whether or not a certain dollar threshold requires a manager approval because there doesn't seem to be a consensus or whether or not a manager approval is required. Like I said, most of the FD stores I went to required a manager approval.
Yea. Definitely a YMMV thing. Maybe regional? I even didn't need manager approval when I did the second reload at those 3 different stores.
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Old Jul 9, 2014, 9:00 am
  #5073  
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 3,471
Originally Posted by cdancer20
Yea. Definitely a YMMV thing. Maybe regional? I even didn't need manager approval when I did the second reload at those 3 different stores.
Was your 2nd reload less than $500?
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Old Jul 9, 2014, 9:01 am
  #5074  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Programs: Hyatt Globalist No More..., Hyatt Explorist, Hilton Diamond, SPG Platinum, Marriott Platinum
Posts: 4,375
Originally Posted by ericdabbs
Was your 2nd reload less than $500?
Yes. $250. I tried $450 once but the machine had already drained my OV on a previous error and told me no funds. I haven't tried that amount again since.
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Old Jul 9, 2014, 9:03 am
  #5075  
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 3,471
Originally Posted by cdancer20
Yes. $250. I tried $450 once but the machine had already drained my OV on a previous error and told me no funds. I haven't tried that amount again since.
Wait did you reswipe your card after your error occurred to have the funds refunded back to you? I don't know why the FD POS system doesn't tell you that but that is what you need to do in order to get your funds back.
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Old Jul 9, 2014, 9:20 am
  #5076  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Programs: Hyatt Globalist No More..., Hyatt Explorist, Hilton Diamond, SPG Platinum, Marriott Platinum
Posts: 4,375
Originally Posted by ericdabbs
Wait did you reswipe your card after your error occurred to have the funds refunded back to you? I don't know why the FD POS system doesn't tell you that but that is what you need to do in order to get your funds back.
No...I had had the error before (in the trial/error) phase and the funds went back. I assumed though that I just had to wait the normal 8 days for funds to come back to my card. Btw, the error was that I tried to do back to back $500 loads. I think this one though had a bigger issue b/c the screen actually showed "Fraud alert" vs the first time just declining my purchase. Oh goodness...so I'm going to have to go back to the store to get a refund?
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Old Jul 9, 2014, 9:25 am
  #5077  
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 3,471
Originally Posted by cdancer20
No...I had had the error before (in the trial/error) phase and the funds went back. I assumed though that I just had to wait the normal 8 days for funds to come back to my card. Btw, the error was that I tried to do back to back $500 loads. I think this one though had a bigger issue b/c the screen actually showed "Fraud alert" vs the first time just declining my purchase. Oh goodness...so I'm going to have to go back to the store to get a refund?
HAHA...it shows fraud alert if you tried to do 2 consecutive $500 loads. Don't worry its not just you. I saw it occur to me on 2 different OV's I had after I loaded my first $500. It was my first experience with FD Serve loading about a week ago and was experimenting at the time to see if I could load 2 consecutive $500 loads on two different Serve cards ($500 each). Suffice to say that the FD POS machine is NOT Serve card agnostic and won't allow 2 consecutive $500 loads regardless what Serve card you used and has some unknown timeout period.

If you are getting your funds back onto your card, you don't need to go back to the FD store since I think its too late now anyways. The FD store is not just going to credit you $500 out of the blue. The quickest and cleanest way to get your funds back immediately was to do it at the time of the error occurred by reswiping your card. That is suppose to help clear their FD POS system from erroring out and get your funds back.

Last edited by ericdabbs; Jul 9, 2014 at 9:32 am
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Old Jul 9, 2014, 9:31 am
  #5078  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Programs: Hyatt Globalist No More..., Hyatt Explorist, Hilton Diamond, SPG Platinum, Marriott Platinum
Posts: 4,375
Originally Posted by ericdabbs
HAHA...it shows fraud alert if you tried to do 2 consecutive $500 loads. Don't worry its not just you. I saw it occur to me on 2 different OV's I had after I loaded my first $500. It was my first experience with FD Serve loading about a week ago and was experimenting at the time to see if I could load 2 consecutive $500 loads on two different Serve cards ($500 each). Suffice to say that the FD POS machine is NOT Serve card agnostic and won't allow 2 consecutive $500 loads regardless what Serve card you used and has some unknown timeout period.
Yea this was during the second day of the month when no one know wth was going with FD LOL. So did you reswipe your card to get refunded immediately?
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Old Jul 9, 2014, 9:32 am
  #5079  
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: MDT
Programs: DL, AA
Posts: 390
Originally Posted by cdancer20
Has anyone caught a lot of slack from Serve from switching debit/credit card multiple times? I feel like doing this would be not good but just thought I would ask for other's experience. I now have two RCA's that I need to do my monthly transactions on. I have found Serve to be a lot easier than Amazon or small purchases here/there, etc. Was "considering" doing: Month 1 - Card A, switch to card B. Month 2 - Card B, switch to card A. And so forth.
I haven't had serve for too long but from May - June I probably used 4 or 5 different CCs. I don't see why they'd care, other than the fact that we're causing more work for them.
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Old Jul 9, 2014, 9:37 am
  #5080  
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 3,471
Originally Posted by cdancer20
Yea this was during the second day of the month when no one know wth was going with FD LOL. So did you reswipe your card to get refunded immediately?
Well luckily both times after the error occurred the manager on duty told me to reswipe my card to get my funds back. I then immediately went outside to call the OV phone number and confirmed my funds were still there on both cards. It wasn't until I got back home and went to onevanilla.com and confirmed that the $500 was successfully debited but then was credited $500 back on both my cards.

I consider myself lucky since it seems like others were less fortunate since the FD cashiers/manager were not aware of how to clear it out. I am just hoping everyone understands now that to clear out their error which is to tell them that you need to reswipe your card to get your funds back. I assume that is what the FD POS system is complaining about after the failed load in that it needs to return your funds to your card before the POS system resets itself to process more customers. I find it really stupid that the FD POS system would even allow the $500 to be debited if their internal system is going to reject it anyways. The FD POS system should first check to see if their system will allow the transaction to go through before it tries to debit the debit card. Its ridiculous that this kind of thing is happening in the first place. Any other store and the POS system would have rejected the transaction from even happening first before debiting your funds just like how WM did with the OVs.
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Old Jul 9, 2014, 9:38 am
  #5081  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Programs: Hyatt Globalist No More..., Hyatt Explorist, Hilton Diamond, SPG Platinum, Marriott Platinum
Posts: 4,375
Originally Posted by mh1361
I haven't had serve for too long but from May - June I probably used 4 or 5 different CCs. I don't see why they'd care, other than the fact that we're causing more work for them.
Thanks. I just think that it would be a cause of fraud error maybe? Sure they can verify each acct but things that aren't normal tend to raise flags with banks. Though of course Serve is a lot more lenient than other banks, both prepaid and regular.
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Old Jul 9, 2014, 9:39 am
  #5082  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Programs: Hyatt Globalist No More..., Hyatt Explorist, Hilton Diamond, SPG Platinum, Marriott Platinum
Posts: 4,375
Originally Posted by ericdabbs
Well luckily both times after the error occurred the manager on duty told me to reswipe my card to get my funds back. I then immediately went outside to call the OV phone number and confirmed my funds were still there. It wasn't until I got back home and went to onevanilla.com and confirmed that the $500 was successfully debited but then was credited $500 back. I consider myself lucky since it seems like others were less fortunate or the FD cashiers were not aware of how to clear it out. I am just hoping everyone understands now that to clear out their error which is to tell them that you need to reswipe your card to get your funds back. I assume that is what the FD POS system is complaining about after the failed load in that it needs to return your funds to your card before the POS system resets itself to process more customers.
Thanks. I'll give it 1-2 more days just to be sure and then I'll relunctantly go back to the store. (Hate drawing too much attention for the manager to this ya know.)
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Old Jul 9, 2014, 11:20 am
  #5083  
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,857
Originally Posted by Navybones
It has taken me anywhere from 5min to 15min. Just depends on how fast the CSR can get a hold of the CC CSR. Although, I last changed a CC 3 months ago. I have seen posts here that say that they don't do the 3 way anymore and it sounds like it may be going faster.
Ouch. I'm hoping they definitely don't do the 3 way call anymore. That sounds unnecessarily painful for all parties.
Originally Posted by Lumpylump76
If you can add a card, then wait a week before load, you may not even need to call in.
Even better. That's definitely something I can do.
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Old Jul 9, 2014, 11:45 am
  #5084  
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Northeast USA
Posts: 300
Originally Posted by cdancer20
Thanks. I'll give it 1-2 more days just to be sure and then I'll relunctantly go back to the store. (Hate drawing too much attention for the manager to this ya know.)
Sounds like we might be in similar boats.

Just to clarify, have you (or anyone else) had a situation where your money was debited, the transaction did not successfully load to Serve, and you did not know to get your card swiped again and have the money returned, but then the money came back to your OV on its own eventually? Or if it didn't come back on its own, how did you successfully get it back? Just talking to the FD store? Involving Incomm in some way?
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Old Jul 9, 2014, 11:52 am
  #5085  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Programs: Hyatt Globalist No More..., Hyatt Explorist, Hilton Diamond, SPG Platinum, Marriott Platinum
Posts: 4,375
Originally Posted by dublin487
Sounds like we might be in similar boats.

Just to clarify, have you (or anyone else) had a situation where your money was debited, the transaction did not successfully load to Serve, and you did not know to get your card swiped again and have the money returned, but then the money came back to your OV on its own eventually? Or if it didn't come back on its own, how did you successfully get it back? Just talking to the FD store? Involving Incomm in some way?
Most people just started doing FD this month so not enough time has passed (i.e. 8 days)
cdancer20 is offline  

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