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Bluebird prepaid debit, now with FDIC insurance and paper checks (2015)

Bluebird prepaid debit, now with FDIC insurance and paper checks (2015)

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Old Oct 24, 15, 1:36 pm   -   Wikipost
Please read: This is a community-maintained wiki post containing the most important information from this thread. You may edit the Wiki once you have been on FT for 90 days and have made 90 posts.
 
Last edit by: iflyjetz
Wiki Link
Read the wiki before posting a question.

Check your BB load limits BEFORE asking in this thread about "tender not allowed" or any other errors.

Bluebird website. There's no need to buy a Bluebird kit in-store; sign-up free on the website.

The original discussion. The previous 2013- 2014 megathread.

For information on switching from BB to Serve, see the Serve thread wiki.

Bluebird Load Limits:
  • Cash loading via VR or WM load: $2,500/day and $5,000 total per calendar month
  • Cash loading up to $1999.99/day at Walmart registers (tested by PedroNY in Post #525 and showed to not be enforced. http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/manuf...l#post25611848 )
  • Online Debit 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

The cash load limit for a temp card is $1,500 total.

*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. Your account will be flagged upon first/second attempt. If blocked, call Account Protection Services at 1-800-660-2454 to clear it (9am-8pm EST, Mon-Fri).

The day currently resets around midnight Eastern/11pm Central/10pm Mountain/9pm Pacific.

For online bill pay
  • You can pay the credit card that you used to buy reloads
  • 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


Loading with debit card at Walmart
Self checkout does not work for loading.

Many Walmart stores are enforcing a rule against the use of gift 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. Otherwise, you may be asked by management to never visit the MC again to load with gift cards.

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.

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

Please see http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/manuf...bit-cards.html for additional information on using prepaid debit cards.

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.
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Old Sep 25, 15, 2:19 pm
  #406  
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 118
anyone having issues loading today? I tried at multiple registers today, each time it said approved on the keypad, but when funding and normally prints the long receipt for final confirmation, the short receipt prints and funds are not added.

Also tried logging in both via app and web, and received "Technical Difficulties" screen. Are they doing an update, or perhaps this is just a glitch today.

I was doing $500 meta bank debit visas from grocery, usually work with no issue.

**UPDATE**
Now once logged into Bluebird it shows successful adds of $500, then reversal of $500. Which explains why the screen said approved (added $500), but then funds not added (reversal of $500).

Funky.....

Last edited by dprocuk; Sep 25, 15 at 4:00 pm
dprocuk is offline  
Old Sep 25, 15, 3:57 pm
  #407  
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 13
Originally Posted by toesknees View Post
I am trying to add Navient to pay back my student loans via BB. When searching for Navient, I am given two options. Navient and Navient Private Loan. I have tried using both using my account number found on the website and adding a 1 found on the payment slip. I have also tried using both the 5 and 9 digits for the zip code. No matter what combination I use for both options, nothing worked.

I have tried searching the threads but nothing came up. Can anyone tell me what you did if you were successful in adding Navient as one of your payees? I am also aware that I can pay directly with a CC but I want to be able to pay extra all on CC instead of through my bank. Thank you in advance.
Can anyone help with this?
toesknees is offline  
Old Sep 25, 15, 4:22 pm
  #408  
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Salt Lake City, UT
Programs: AAdvantage Platinum, DL Diamond 1MM, Hyatt Platinum, SPG Gold, Hilton Diamond, AMEX 2015 Centurion
Posts: 323
Originally Posted by toesknees View Post
Can anyone help with this?
You are probably inputting the wrong account number...with Navient you have both a loan number and an account number (both are different). When you log into your Navient account, you should see your account number at the very top of the web page (mine is 10 digits long). On BB, select Private loan and input the 10 digit account number. For the zip code, use 19101-3611. I have paid my loan many times from BB, Serve and RB with no problems.
RickyBobby is offline  
Old Sep 25, 15, 4:31 pm
  #409  
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 13
Originally Posted by RickyBobby View Post
You are probably inputting the wrong account number...with Navient you have both a loan number and an account number (both are different). When you log into your Navient account, you should see your account number at the very top of the web page (mine is 10 digits long). On BB, select Private loan and input the 10 digit account number. For the zip code, use 19101-3611. I have paid my loan many times from BB, Serve and RB with no problems.
Thanks for the help. I had the account number correct but never tried that zip code as I used the one from the statement payment slip. I will wait and see if my payment goes through.
toesknees is offline  
Old Sep 25, 15, 4:33 pm
  #410  
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Salt Lake City, UT
Programs: AAdvantage Platinum, DL Diamond 1MM, Hyatt Platinum, SPG Gold, Hilton Diamond, AMEX 2015 Centurion
Posts: 323
Originally Posted by toesknees View Post
Thanks for the help. I had the account number correct but never tried that zip code as I used the one from the statement payment slip. I will wait and see if my payment goes through.
I would definitely send a test payment first (<$1.00), just to verify. You don't want your payment ending up in limbo for x amount of days.
RickyBobby is offline  
Old Sep 25, 15, 5:44 pm
  #411  
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: GAI
Programs: TK *G, all statuses that come with Ritz, Amex Plat, Citi Prestige cards
Posts: 343
Originally Posted by dprocuk View Post
anyone having issues loading today? I tried at multiple registers today, each time it said approved on the keypad, but when funding and normally prints the long receipt for final confirmation, the short receipt prints and funds are not added.

I was doing $500 meta bank debit visas from grocery, usually work with no issue.
Had the exact same experience about four hours ago, first at a Neighborhood Market and then at a full size store nearby. (Won't name the locations here but they would be the first WM's you would hit driving north from Seattle.) Screen flashed approved, then a long "waiting" message on the cashier's side, then the shortest WM receipt ever printed: one line with the store number, terminal, transaction, and some "OP" number, and the second line reading "debit not approved, call authorizer." Had just bought five Simon VGCs, where there were some technical difficulties at time of purchase but the cashier assured me everything was fine after a system reboot - so I panicked, called Simon, they confirmed the balances and insisted it was a Walmart issue. So I drove almost an hour and a half down to the only consistently working Kate I know of in the Puget Sound area and managed to upload the cards there without incident. Relieved to get rid of the cards somehow, but still a bit pissed - waiting out the traffic at a Starbucks now but all in all $2.5k in MS took up over half the day... another reminder that while the Seattle area is pretty good on the spending side of MS, options for liquidating prepaid products are limited!
lonelycrowd is offline  
Old Sep 25, 15, 5:46 pm
  #412  
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Salt Lake City, UT
Programs: AAdvantage Platinum, DL Diamond 1MM, Hyatt Platinum, SPG Gold, Hilton Diamond, AMEX 2015 Centurion
Posts: 323
Originally Posted by lonelycrowd View Post
Had the exact same experience about four hours ago, first at a Neighborhood Market and then at a full size store nearby. (Won't name the locations here but they would be the first WM's you would hit driving north from Seattle.) Screen flashed approved, then a long "waiting" message on the cashier's side, then the shortest WM receipt ever printed: one line with the store number, terminal, transaction, and some "OP" number, and the second line reading "debit not approved, call authorizer." Had just bought five Simon VGCs, where there were some technical difficulties at time of purchase but the cashier assured me everything was fine after a system reboot - so I panicked, called Simon, they confirmed the balances and insisted it was a Walmart issue. So I drove almost an hour and a half down to the only consistently working Kate I know of in the Puget Sound area and managed to upload the cards there without incident. Relieved to get rid of the cards somehow, but still a bit pissed - waiting out the traffic at a Starbucks now but all in all $2.5k in MS took up over half the day... another reminder that while the Seattle area is pretty good on the spending side of MS, options for liquidating prepaid products are limited!
Same issues are being reported with RB at Targets...probably an issue on the AMEX side today.
RickyBobby is offline  
Old Sep 25, 15, 6:14 pm
  #413  
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Los Angeles
Programs: AA (one day at a time) DL, US, IMF, NSA (I'm watching you!)
Posts: 24
Originally Posted by dprocuk View Post
anyone having issues loading today? I tried at multiple registers today, each time it said approved on the keypad, but when funding and normally prints the long receipt for final confirmation, the short receipt prints and funds are not added.

Also tried logging in both via app and web, and received "Technical Difficulties" screen. Are they doing an update, or perhaps this is just a glitch today.

I was doing $500 meta bank debit visas from grocery, usually work with no issue.

**UPDATE**
Now once logged into Bluebird it shows successful adds of $500, then reversal of $500. Which explains why the screen said approved (added $500), but then funds not added (reversal of $500).

Funky.....
Had exact same problem today. Wondering if this is the beginning of the end of this MS tactic?

Yesterday, I went to WM with 3 MetaBank VGC's. Loaded $1K onto one BB with one transaction, 2 swipes. And then i loaded $500 onto another BB. No problems at all. I always use a cashier in customer service because there's no Kate at this WM.

Went back today with 2 more MetaBank VGC's and 2 USBank VGC's. My intent was to load $1K onto each of my BB's. Had same problem as dprocuk. It would say "approved" then it would somehow reverse itself. They all know me in this WM and either know what I'm up to and/or don't care. One of the mgrs once hinted to me that he's in the game, too. They let me try several different times at several different registers, and I finally got $1500 loaded, but it took several attempts at only $500 each time. And one of the Metabank VGC's just would not work at all. I even bought $18.30 in merchandise with it (just to make sure it worked as a gift card) and then tried to load $481 -- no dice. So i finally gave up as I didn't want to compromise the good will I have with these nice people.

One thing I noticed yesterday for the first time (and it also happened again today) is that I got a "cash back" option each time I swiped the VGC. I don't remember having that option before yesterday.This brings to mind how the Vanilla VGC's faded away last year. Remember, it got tricky, then hit or miss, and then Vanilla VGC's were finally dead as a BB loading option. I think we're about to see the Metabank and US Bank VGC's go the way of Vanilla.
avery66 is offline  
Old Sep 25, 15, 6:26 pm
  #414  
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: GAI
Programs: TK *G, all statuses that come with Ritz, Amex Plat, Citi Prestige cards
Posts: 343
Originally Posted by avery66 View Post
One thing I noticed yesterday for the first time (and it also happened again today) is that I got a "cash back" option each time I swiped the VGC.
Me too. Thought the cashback buttons were very, very bizarre for a Bluebird load - though it would be a useful feature for MS! I told them to try swiping the BB card on their side of the register and the same thing happened. I'm sure they thought I was just a typical member of the prepaid card demographic in denial about my bank account balance by the third try...
lonelycrowd is offline  
Old Sep 25, 15, 9:50 pm
  #415  
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 94
Loaded $1500 with absolutely no problems in SoCal today. The cash back option was there, but I really doubt that it would work if you pressed yes, Walmart isn't going to make it easier for us. I usually load at Kate, and it always asks if I want cash back, but I can't remember if the register always has. There have been many times in the last several months where there has been a day when the system seems hit or miss, it is usually cleared up the next day and has something to do with the Amex system. When this happens, a bunch of people show up predicting doomsday, and then the next day all is well. The sky isn't always falling.
beagledog11 is offline  
Old Sep 26, 15, 10:07 am
  #416  
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Los Angeles
Programs: AA (one day at a time) DL, US, IMF, NSA (I'm watching you!)
Posts: 24
Originally Posted by beagledog11 View Post
Loaded $1500 with absolutely no problems in SoCal today. The cash back option was there, but I really doubt that it would work if you pressed yes, Walmart isn't going to make it easier for us. I usually load at Kate, and it always asks if I want cash back, but I can't remember if the register always has. There have been many times in the last several months where there has been a day when the system seems hit or miss, it is usually cleared up the next day and has something to do with the Amex system. When this happens, a bunch of people show up predicting doomsday, and then the next day all is well. The sky isn't always falling.
Thanks, beagledog! I hope you are right and I am wrong! I'm also in SoCal, so I will try again today. I have to load at the registers because the Kates around me haven't worked in more than a year.
avery66 is offline  
Old Sep 26, 15, 1:51 pm
  #417  
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: NJ PA NY
Posts: 6
North Jersey Data Points

Bought 5x500 SMGC yesterday. Did some travel around NNJ to see if I would have problems loading them anywhere. Mostly good to go, I was surprised by the one WM that refused me.

WM ITC Mount Olive NJ - (WM type: Whisky Tango) no issues, loaded 1x500 at Money Center. Cashier: Young Hispanic Female. This WM has no Kate.

WM Secaucus NJ - (WM type: Ethnic) asked "Is this a Gift Card?" Replied "No It's a debit". Loaded 1x500 at the Money center. Cashier: Older White female. This WM has a Kate that was OOS.

WM Kearny NJ - (WM type: Hoodrat/Ethnic) Money center cashier (Heavyset middle age Black female) would not load bluebird with SMGC. Asked to see SMGC and stated "they" told us not to load gift cards. I didn't ask who they were or try to argue. I just left. This WM has a Kate that was OOS.

WM Ledgewood NJ - (WM type: Whiskey Tango) Loaded 1x500 at Money Center (Middle age hispanic female) and 1x500 at cashier (older asian female. I bought some deodorant and k-cups lol). This WM has no Kate.

WM Hackettstown - (WM type - Whiskey Tango). Loaded 1x500 at money Center (Middle aged white female). This WM has no Kate.

FYI. YMMV.
GowHyperFarmFood1 is offline  
Old Sep 26, 15, 2:06 pm
  #418  
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: GAI
Programs: TK *G, all statuses that come with Ritz, Amex Plat, Citi Prestige cards
Posts: 343
Originally Posted by GowHyperFarmFood1 View Post
Bought 5x500 SMGC yesterday. Did some travel around NNJ to see if I would have problems loading them anywhere. Mostly good to go
Thanks for the update and for the entertaining yet spot-on typology of Walmarts. Good to see that a register load worked somewhere yesterday. Will probably try another register load somewhere in the Seattle area before the end of the month.

**UPDATE**
Now once logged into Bluebird it shows successful adds of $500, then reversal of $500. Which explains why the screen said approved (added $500), but then funds not added (reversal of $500).
Checked my Bluebird account online and had the exact same pattern of deposits and reversals for each attempt. Hopefully this didn't count against my daily or monthly limits? Obviously the $2500 via Kate went through just fine later in the day, so presumably no hardcoded limit was broken.
lonelycrowd is offline  
Old Sep 26, 15, 3:57 pm
  #419  
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Programs: Marriott LT Tit; Hyatt Explorist; Hilton CC Gold; IHG CC Plt; Hertz (MR) 5 star
Posts: 5,006
Originally Posted by lonelycrowd View Post
Checked my Bluebird account online and had the exact same pattern of deposits and reversals for each attempt. Hopefully this didn't count against my daily or monthly limits? Obviously the $2500 via Kate went through just fine later in the day, so presumably no hardcoded limit was broken.
Reversals don't count against your limits. I've had them happen before; not an issue.
iflyjetz is offline  
Old Sep 26, 15, 6:26 pm
  #420  
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Los Angeles
Programs: AA (one day at a time) DL, US, IMF, NSA (I'm watching you!)
Posts: 24
went back to same WM where I had trouble loading BB with MB VGC's and US VGC's yesterday. Loaded one $500 US VGC with no problem. Was also able to load the $481 MB VGC that I could not make work yesterday despite several attempts at several different registers. (It was originally $500, but I bought $19 in merchandise yesterday to make sure it worked as a gift card)
So I guess the sky isn't, in fact, falling, and it was just something weird with Amex/BB system yesterday?
avery66 is offline  

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