I Earned Alaska Air & American Airlines Miles for Reloading My Bluebird With My Alaska Air & UFB Bank Debit Card at Wal-Mart

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[Emily & I do NOT get a referral for the  Delta, Alaska Air, or American Airlines debit cards.]

As soon as I got my American Express Bluebird card, I reloaded it with 3 miles earning cards – the Suntrust Delta debit card, the Bank of America Alaska Air debit card, and the UFB Bank Airlines Rewards Checking account which earns American Airlines miles.

It costs $2 per debit card load to load your Bluebird with a debit card ONLINE, and you are limited to $100 per day and $1,000 per month, so I don’t recommend this method.

Instead, you CAN load your Bluebird card with a debit card for FREE when you reload at a Wal-Mart store.  You can reload up to $1,000 per day and $5,000 per month.

I Earned Alaska Air Miles for Loading my Bluebird With the Alaska Air Debit Card

The Alaska Air and American Airlines debit cards earn only 0.5 miles per $1 spent, so the Delta debit card which earns 1 mile per $1 spent could be the better choice, but it depends which miles you’d rather earn.

I used my Delta, Alaska Air, & American Airlines cards to successfully load my Bluebird card at a Wal-Mart store.  I was pretty sure that I’d earn miles for these reloads because I’ve earned miles for buying money orders and paying bills at Wal-Mart, so I didn’t expect this to be any different.

There is a $1,000 daily limit & $5,000 monthly limit for loading your Bluebird card with a debit card at Wal-Mart stores.  These limits are shared with the limits for Vanilla Reloads.


Well, points from my Alaska Air & UFB Bank Airlines Reward checking account just posted.  I earned 150 Alaska Air miles for reloading my Bluebird debit card with $300 at Wal-Mart with the Alaska Air debit card, and I earned 40 American Airlines miles for loading $80 purchase to a Bluebird at Wal-Mart.

You only earn 0.5 Alaska Air or American Airlines miles per $1 spent with the Bank of America Alaska Air or UFB Bank Airlines Reward debit card.  However, the annual fee for the Bank of America Alaska Air card is $30 compared to $75 for the Delta debit card which earns 1 mile per $1 spent and there is no fee for the UFB Bank Airlines Reward debit card.

The transaction posted to my Alaska Air statement as:


This means that you can earn up to 2,500 Alaska Air miles per month for reloading your American Express Bluebird with up to $5,000 via a debit card at Wal-Mart.

The transaction posted as “POS DEB Walmart” to my UFB Bank statement.

However, I don’t expect this to last long because giving out so many Alaska Air or American Airlines miles is likely unprofitable for someone.  There’s also the risk that Bank of America or UFB Bank might ask you why you spend so much at Wal-Mart and investigate your account.

So What?

Sure, this doesn’t help complete minimum spending requirements on credit cards or to get spending bonuses on credit cards.

But using a debit card to load a Bluebird is a great way for folks who don’t sign up for credit cards to earn some extra points because you can use Bluebird to pay almost any bill electronically or via a check with their “Pay Bills” system.  If you do sign-up for credit cards, it is better to use Bluebird to meet minimum spending requirements to get the sign-up bonus and to pay bills which otherwise didn’t earn any miles or points.

This is also helpful for those folks who don’t have easy access to Vanilla Reloads cards because there are lots of Wal-Marts across the US.

How to REload A Debit Card at Wal-mart

You can technically reload a Bluebird with a debit card at any cash register at Wal-Mart, but in my experience most tellers don’t know how to do that and have to call a manager to help them.  Perhaps this will change once more folks have Bluebird cards and go to Wal-Mart to reload them.

But the staff at the Wal-Mart Money Center (in the same section as the customer service department or next to it) are experts at reloading pre-paid cards and can reload your Bluebird in just a few minutes.

Bottom Line

I’ll keep you posted when the points from my American Airlines debit cards post to my account.  For now, it is nice to have an alternative way to earn miles with American Express Bluebird by using the Delta, Alaska Air, or American Airlines debit cards.

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41 responses to “I Earned Alaska Air & American Airlines Miles for Reloading My Bluebird With My Alaska Air & UFB Bank Debit Card at Wal-Mart

  1. Which airlines can be linked to the UFB debit card beside AA?

  2. Do you ever give up?? This topic has already been beaten to death!! Your blog just keeps sinking lower and lower.

  3. @seth, goodbye, or just skip the topics you don’t like, and we won’t need to waste our team reading your whiny posts that add nothing of value to anyone.

    I personally don’t feel the present MMS analysis will be of value to me either, since I have none of those debit cards, but I appreciate that it will be useful to some.

  4. Hi, my name is Seth, where is my bottle? Waaaaaaaaaaa waaaaaaaaaaa

  5. @ace- Thanks for helping my arguments. Its clear you have no retort when all you can do is make personal attacks. Real mature.

    @DaveS- Perhaps if you actually read what I wrote you’d understand my points. I’ve gone past complaining to actually offering valid points that others on here have agreed with. I never said what Daraius is posting is not of value. Its just that this latest posting is a mere retread of something Daraius posted last week! The post is of no value to anyone who reads this blog and is aimed at merely drawing traffic to this website and getting CC referrals.

    Perhaps if you don’t like my comments you should follow your own advice and skip them. I believe my comments have added value in that they have started a discussion as to what bloggers real motivations are and whether bloggers care more about the subject matter of their postings or getting CC referrals. Unfortunately, immature people such as Ace are not able to comprehend such arguments and resort to childish retorts.

  6. I have been considering getting the Alaska Air Debit card since I already bank at BoA. They are building a new Walmart about 3 miles from our subdivision should be open in Jan 2013. This would really help earn points if I pay mortgage, 2 car payments etc accrue points. Thanks!

    • @jrey – As of now, you can only earn American Airlines miles.

      @seth – I don’t get your point. Bluebird and re-loadable cards IS the biggest thing since I started blogging and I WILL continue to cover them. BTW, there are no referral links in this post, but it helps folks earn miles and points for payments for which they otherwise wouldn’t earn miles and points for. Just YESTERDAY, you posted asking for a link to the debit card limits for Bluebird and I answered your comment. If loading with a debit card interests you, I assume it interests other readers as well.

      @Lively – You’re welcome!

  7. it is time Darious , Mommy points take a time off.

    These dead on arrival schemes must be stopped. NO MORE COMMISSIONS

  8. Seth, Darius is not retreading what he said last week. He did not know for sure if the Alaska Air points would post to his account because his statement had not yet closed. Some of us are appreciative of MMS posts. I do not have the time to go check out (and then report back) every possible point and angle in order to obtain airline miles. If you are not benefiting from MMS blog, then move on and stop leaving your crap here.

  9. I’ve seen people either on here or other sites say that the hilton honors amex card gives 6x on drugstores like cvs. I read the t&c on that card and it says that prepaid reloads do not count for points. How is it that we can get points; don’t they check and how would they know if we bought reload cards?

  10. @Michael

    And that I think is part of problem now in the miles/points community. You have read that (some) people are having (some) success, but it contradicts what you read in the t&c. Why don;t you actually do a bit of legwork, doing a trial run of say a $10 reload and see if it works for you? If you don’t want to risk a few dollars than perhaps you should find another hobby?

  11. My point is that you seem to be posting daily about the Bluebird card. If you look at other blogs such as View from the Wing (who I consider the best out there) he actually thinks up interesting content and his posts are geared towards informing without spoon feeding. It seems as if your posts are geared towards getting others to jump on the bandwagon and earn you referrals. There seems to be very little original content on your blog aside from your trip reports.

    @Lively- You are the prime example of what I think has caused the mileage community to go downhill. You don’t have the time to learn how to use the system so you just want it spoon fed to you. You want maximum results with minimal effort. It is this attitude that is leading to the devaluation of the mileage game. Take a look at frequent miler’s blog today. He is no longer going to be spoon feeding information. If you want something you have to learn to work for it.
    True, I did ask a question and I got it answered, but I did so through the comments feature for a particular blog posting. My question pertained to a statement in your actual blog post. This is what bothes me. In your post yesterday you mentioned funding a bluebird card with a pre-paid debit card. Today you make another posting about funding a bluebird card with a debit card. Is this really necessary? It just makes it seem like you are writing whatever you can find on Bluebird.

  12. I haven’t applied for the card yet; just thinking about it. I used to have an hilton amex card about 10 years ago that got closed. i have over 10,000 points that i got free from topguest before they shut me down

  13. Apologies, my last posting got a bit garbled and doesnt make sense.

  14. @Seth – move on dude. Go read your other favorite blogs if MMS isn’t adding any value for you personally. Or better yet, start your own blog if you don’t like the content you’re finding here.

  15. My only problem is that I have to go into the WM to get the 500 miles. I dont see myself driving to WM 5x’s a month for 2,500 miles. Darius is this really the biggest opportunity since you started blogging? Vanilla Reloads and Coins seemed way better.

  16. This blog has sunk so low, we’ll need James Cameron to raise it up.

    There’s a difference between giving tips and hints, and spelling it out for all the lazy people to see and exploit.

  17. If something is unlikely to last very long because it is unprofitable for someone, it’s probably not a good idea to REPEATEDLY blog about it and confirm its functionality in a manner easily accessible to the drones at BOA. You’ve mentioned this no less than three times before–it makes no sense to keep blogging about it endlessly.

  18. I used to click your referral links when signing up for a credit card, but will no longer anymore. Why not just rename this blog to the “Bluebird by AMEX” Blog? I mean, come the f on already.

    Tomorrow’s topic: “Where can your Bluebird card be used for shopping”, followed by “Bluebird: Is it possible to load with AA Miles??”

  19. “Million Bluebird Blogs” is another apt title to change the name to

  20. Thanks Darius. Not as good as Amazon Payments, but this should work for all credit cards including Chase correct?

  21. I have no problem with Daraius posting deals he knows about, regardless of how he finds out about them. If you want to blame someone, blame alGore for inventing the internet. Without the internet, all the FT people would be communicating by carrier pigeon, and the deals would stay secret for years.

    The problem seems to be that you have to go to Walmart 5 times a month to earn 30K miles a year. And as Daraius admits, doing so may get your account shut down. But the real problem is that very few of us have one of the mileage debit cards listed, since the payback until now was so low. And by the time we apply for one, and get it sent to us, this deal will have been shut down, just as the OD VR deal was shut down. I wonder how many people have applications pending for INK cards, intending to use them for the OD VR BB deal, which is now extinct before their card even arrives in the mail.

    Supposedly, the reason for this post is to help “those who don’t use credit cards” to get some points. Really, Daraius ? As every travel blogger you have ever interviewed has said, the main way to score miles and points is cc apps. Anyone who can’t qualify for a cc is never going to get enough miles/points to be useful. Indeed, anyone who can’t qualify for a cc also can’t afford leisure travel anywhere, and thus has no reason to bother reading this blog. The only readers of this blog are folks with ccs, and the only use they can make of this post is to add the WalMart/debit card scheme to their bag of tricks.

    My guess is that the debit card issuers will force WalMart to stop loading BB with their cards. WalMart itself may decide that having scores of people a day tying up their Money Center clerks loading BB isn’t profitable for them. They could easily put BB on a “cash only” basis, as Walgreens has with the VR cards. Following this post, potentially hundreds of people will go thru the trouble of applying for a debit card, and pay $30 to $75 in fees, only to discover this deal has been closed down before that card arrives. The title of this post should have been “Wild Goose Chase”.

  22. Hi D-
    to meet the CC minimum, I believe Amazon Payment to be the best alternative. You agree? Have you used it? Suggestions?

  23. @Seth @ Everyone else….Here we go again…Seth brings up the “spoon fed” argument. When you talk like that, it just shows you how little you really know. You have no idea what MMS readership is. I for one, read multiple blogs, research my own deals, stalk on FT threads, etc, and still read MMS. Darius is not spoonfeeding, he is pushing out information. If you want your own deals, go figure them out for yourself, and then DONT tell anyone about them. Nothing wrong with publishing deals like this. All of MMS posts about BB, have been slightly different and covered different things. Seth, troll somewhere else please.

  24. Darius. I enjoy everyone of your posts and quite frankly am sick and tired of people like SETH and Robert Hanson, who just complain. I also have a website that has a little to do with points, but most it is about TRAVEL, which is why we do all this crazy stuff! Keep the good stuff coming!
    One question, what does it mean to LOAD a bluebird card? You just go to walmart and give them your Suntrust Debit, B of A Alaska or AA UFB bankcard and they take the money from your checking account and load it onto your Bluebird account? I have 2 of 3 of these debit cards and Walmart is just down the street from my business, so this would be very easy for me to do. I have been so busy travelling lately (Spain, Italy, Turkey and Jordan), that I haven’t been keeping up with the latest points info, so for me this is great news. I also need some new info regarding the points world to post for my beginning points people, so Seth and Robert, stay away from my site!

  25. Pointsandtravel: Let me get this straight. You have a travel blog, but you are “too busy” to even keep up with the latest points info. And after Daraius has posted an illustrated step by illustrated step series of posts that even a 3rd grader could understand, what some deride as “spoonfeeding readers”, but others of us call detailed explanations, you are too busy to read his posts, and just want him to give you an individual explanation in the comments section. Then after commenting that you are way out of touch with the miles/points developments, and are just looking for Daraius to personally spoonfeed you stuff to put on your blog, you actually think Seth and I would waste our time going to your blog. ROTFL !!!

  26. @Dariaus: I love this blog, and I check it several times a day to see if some ‘now you see them, now you don’t’ new deals have just been posted. Yes, I am very critical of the overposting of what I consider irresponsible VR BB about to vanish deals, both on MMS and VFTW. Neverless, I check MMS, VFTW, and MP several times a day. And I owe a great deal of gratitude for the genuine MILLION miles and points I have gotten due to the things I have learned from you, Glen and MommyPoints. Thanks for everything…..

  27. Is it possible that you may have to pay taxes on the miles earned when using your debit card to load Bluebird ? When I opened a new checking account with Citi, I received an income statement for the bonus miles.

  28. This is definitely a waste of time for so few miles and not worth getting your account closed. The best method to get points is still credit card churning. I just got approved for Chase Ink Plus and United card, 110K points/miles! If anyone is curious I posted my experience on applying.

    • @Michael Belisle – It shows as a CVS purchase which earns points.

      @MileageUpdate – Bluebird and the ability to earn miles and points for almost everything is a good opportunity. Vanilla Reloads at Office Depot made it great! I never was a fan of coins – too much lugging around for me.

      @Mike – Perhaps your comment is meant for a different post, but none of these debit cards are issued by Chase.

      @Robert Hanson – Ah, I always like your comments because you are always thorough in explaining your point of view. I may not always agree, but I appreciate the effort you take. This post is a supplement for folks to earn miles for making routine payments but don’t have access to Vanilla Reloads. It also helps the few who don’t apply for credit cards (they do exist and they do ask about other options). Of course, the main way to earn miles and points is via credit cards for most of us as you point out. Pssst… it is Gary, not Glen!

      @Mr.D – See this post.

      @Pointsandtravel – You got it! You take your Bluebird to Wal-Mart and give them any of the 3 debit cards above and they transfer money from your bank account via the debit card to your Bluebird account.

      @David – I believe the sign-up bonus for Citi debit cards was taxed last year, but I don’t think that will happen again. And earning miles is usually tax free.

      @romsdeals – I agree. Credit card churning is still the best way to get miles and points!

  29. Opps I meant Gary of course, not Glen.

  30. Dariaus, I am thinking of opening a Citi CK account with the AA debit card but am worried about the 1099 they filed last year. Why do you think they won’t do it again?

  31. I think people are missing the point with the use of debit cards. Using debit cards to transfer money (rather than spend money, as you do on credit cards) allows you to get an EXTRA half point per dollar when you pay your credit card bill. There is also a reason to use debit cards rather than ACH transfer, since the debit transactions post immediately but ACH transfers take a few days. So to me, using debit cards to load bluebird doesn’t replace credit card spending, it supplements credit card spending.

  32. MMS, have you tried to use the $500 Vanilla Visa Debit card (instead of BOA, SunTrust debit cards you mentioned) to load $ into BlueBird in Wart-mart?

    • @jrey – Because of the bad publicity they got and because it appears that they are communicating that the points is a tax free rebate (not a taxable bonus). But we won’t know for sure until the end of the year.

      @Charles – I suspect folks want to use a credit card to pay off their debit card bills, so using a debit card doesn’t seem that lucrative. But as you point out, it is more than what was otherwise possible.

      @Peter – Yes, and it doesn’t work.

  33. I have the BoA Alaska Airlines debit card, I just got the BlueBird in the mail today. My question is do you believe that we run the risk of BoA taking us out of the miles program if they discover this activity?

  34. Hi MMS,

    In your experience, which bank do you recommend, Suntrust for Delta, BOA for Alaska or UFC for AA? Thanks

  35. Pingback: Better ways to load your American Express Bluebird | Chasing The Points

  36. I wanted to tell you about the horrible horrible experience I had writing a check from Bluebird. It was for a deposit back to a renter who was a Total Problem.. I thought I would write it out of there and no problem. Problems from the Very Beginning. They duplicated the check. So we didn’t know what check was good. Then they said the check was confirmed. OMG.. You can get no record of your check. They can not send you any information. you can’t get any paperwork if the check doesn’t go through. You get nothing. The receipient said the check was no good. Then it was lack of funds then it was a stop payment. Bluebird will give you no information. They are in the Phillipines (SP) and help you out no…. Nothing. Can’t send you an email, can’t tell you where the card is. Nothing. NOTHING Don’t ever write a personal check with Blue Bird. NEVER

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