Disclosure: We get a commission for links on the blog. You don’t have to use our links, but we’re very grateful when you do. American Express, Barclaycard, Capital One, Chase, Citibank and US Bank are Million Mile Secrets advertising partners. Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or endorsed by our partners. Here’s our Advertiser Disclosure.
Update: You can no longer load a Vanilla Visa to your Bluebird.
A Vanilla Reload card is one of the ways to load your American Express Bluebird with money so that you can use it to pay bills (including mortgages, loans, rent etc.), withdraw money from ATMs & transfer money to others or to your bank account.
One of the best uses of American Express Bluebird is the ability to pay for transactions which can’t usually be made with a miles or points earning credit card. Transactions such as your rent, mortgage, car payment, credit card bill, tuition etc.
You load your Bluebird card (which you can order online) with a points earning debit card at Wal-Mart. You can also reload Bluebird with Vanilla Reload cards which you can buy at CVS, Walgreen’s or other locations. Alternate with other credit cards so that you’re not spending too much at buying Vanilla Reloads with any one credit card.
Here’s a post on other credit cards to use with Bluebird, so that you’re not maxing out on just 1 card.
You may also be able to pay for the Vanilla Reloads with a credit card at Walgreen’s, but this isn’t always the case and could be a bit of wild goose chase.
Here’s a post on what a Vanilla Reload looks like and how to load a Vanilla Reload card to your Bluebird account.
But what is a Vanilla Reload Card?
This is a Vanilla Reload Card
A Vanilla Reload card looks like this and says “Prepaid Reload” on the front.
It has a PIN number on the back which you have to scratch off to see.
You can usually find these cards in the gift card section at Office Depot. If you don’t want to hunt for the gift card section (they seem to be in different places in different stores), just ask an associate where the gift card section is.
The Vanilla Reload cards which you’re after are usually next to the blue American Express Prepaid cards.
The gift card section usually has other “Vanilla” cards, but you can’t load them to your Bluebird online. See the section below to see which cards can’t be loaded to your Bluebird account.
These are NOT Vanilla Reload Cards
1. Vanilla Prepaid Visa card. You can use it for other purchases, but can’t load it on your Bluebird account online (unless you go to a Wal-Mart and load it to your Bluebird account).
2. Vanilla Visa Gift Card. You can use these for regular purchases, but can’t load them to your Bluebird account online (unless you go to a Wal-Mart and load it to your Bluebird account).
Some Vanilla Visa gift cards look like these.
3. American Express Gift Cards. Again, you won’t be able to load these to your Bluebird account.
How to Reload a Bluebird CArd with a Vanilla Reload
So you’ve got your permanent Bluebird card and you’ve bought a Vanilla Reload. Note that you can’t reload your temporary Bluebird card (which you get in the Starter Kits at Wal-Mart) with a Vanilla Reload card.
Step 1 – Go to VanillaReload.com
Go to VanillaReload.com
Step 2 – Scratch Off PIN Number
Scratch of the PIN number at the back of the Vanilla Reload card.
Step 3 – Enter Information
Enter your 15 digit Bluebird card number in the “Card Number” field.
Then enter the 10 digit PIN number (without spaces) from step 2 in the “PIN Number” field.
Step 4 – Confirm Load
Click “Submit” and confirm the that you want to load your Bluebird account.
Daily. You can load up to $1,000 per day via Vanilla Reloads and/or debit cards at Wal-Mart on your Bluebird account. A new day appears to start at 12 midnight EST.
Monthly. You can load up to $5,000 per month via Vanilla Reloads and/or debit cards at Wal-Mart on your Bluebird account. A new month starts on the 1st of each month and is not a rolling 30 day period.
There are a few different “Vanilla” cards so make sure you buy the correct Vanilla Reload card!