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Update: You can no longer load a Vanilla Visa to your Bluebird.
Via Travel With Grant and Million Mile Secrets’ readers Brandon, IReadDoYou, and Kathy, there’s been a change in how you load gift cards to your Bluebird account at Walmart.
You’ll have to perform a couple of extra steps with certain gift cards, but don’t worry. You can still load your Bluebird with gift cards!
In the past, your best bet for loading your Bluebird account at Walmart has been with using Visa gift cards. American Express cards don’t work, and MasterCard is sometimes hit-and-miss.
Some of these Visa gift cards require that you set a PIN (by calling or registering the card online). Others, like Vanilla Visa Gift Cards, allow you to set a PIN by typing in a random 4-digit number the 1st time you use it. My preference has always been the Vanilla Visa cards, because it’s easy to set the PIN.
Now, Walmart has updated its software, and it’s become more difficult to load some gift cards, including the Vanilla Visa cards.
According to Travel With Grant, some Vanilla Gift Cards (OneVanilla, for example) are being rejected when you try to use them to load Bluebird. Instead of going through as a debit transaction, it’s processed as credit – then denied (because you can’t use a credit card to load Bluebird).
Over on Flyertalk, folks also confirm that they’ve had issues loading OneVanilla Gift Cards.
The good news is that there’s a workaround!
How Do You Load Vanilla Visa Gift Cards Now?
1. Fast Fingers (Travel With Grant’s Method)
Hopefully you have fast fingers, because you’ll have to do a little bit of work to make Walmart accept a Vanilla Visa card now.
After you swipe your card, you’ll see a small yellow box that says “Change Payment Method” on the credit card reader screen. It might only appear for a second or 2, so you’ll have to hit it fast! You have an advantage if you play video games!
You’ll then get an option to select other payment methods. Select “Debit/ATM,” then choose “No Cash Back.” Then enter your PIN.
If you don’t get a “Change Payment Method” button on the screen after you swipe your card, try hitting the green or yellow buttons on the keypad after you swipe your card. This sometimes works to bring up the alternate payment method screen.
2. Hit the Red Cancel Button (Brandon’s Method)
Million Mile Secrets’ reader Brandon suggests another method:
- Confirm your load amount
- Swipe Vanilla Visa gift card
- You’ll see a “waiting for cashier” message on the screen
- Hit the red cancel button on the keypad
- Select the “Debit/ATM” option
- Enter your PIN
The cashier said “it has to be debit”…so I swiped again and saw the “Change Payment” button. I clicked it and it brought me to another screen where I could see a bunch of new options, one of which was “Debit.”
I hit “Debit,” and then clicked “No” for the CashBack option, and then it prompted me for a PIN. I entered my PIN, *BAM*, transaction approved!
I love your enthusiasm, Brandon! Thanks for testing this out for everyone!
3. Code 70 (Kathy and IReadDoYou’s Method)
Million Mile Secrets’ reader Kathy was having trouble loading her Vanilla Visa cards at Walmart and said the cashiers didn’t seem to know what they were doing. Reader IReadDoYou had this suggestion:
@ Kathy: Next time tell them to use Code 70
Kathy follows up with a success story! She asked the cashier to use Code 70 and it worked!
Thank you IReadDoYou for posting about the Code 70. After 3 days of going to different Walmarts and trying different cashiers, this worked.
I found a cashier that wouldn’t give up. I told her to try Code 70 and I hit cancel, then change payment method. The other cashiers didn’t know what they were doing at all. Thank you so much.
Million Mile Secrets’ readers really are the best! I love it when you help each other out.
Folks report that the Walmart MoneyCenter kiosks are not yet affected by this change.
If you’re still having trouble, remember you can load gift cards to Amazon Payments and spend them that way. I’m out of the country so can’t try this out myself, but it sounds like it’s working for lots of folks!
There’s a change in how you load some gift cards to Bluebird at Walmart.
If you use a OneVanilla gift card, it will process as a credit transaction and get denied. But if you hit the “Change Payment Method” button that comes up (briefly) on the screen after you swipe your card, you can change it to a debit transaction and enter your PIN as usual.
You can also try hitting the green, yellow, or red buttons on the keypad right after you swipe your card. It should bring up a “Change Payment Method” screen.
And if that doesn’t work, ask the cashier to use Code 70. You should be able to change your payment method to debit.
Thank you Travel With Grant, Brandon, IReadDoYou, and Kathy for all the great workarounds!
I’m looking forward to trying this out when I get back from my trip. Have you had any experience with the new method of loading Vanilla Visa gift cards onto your Bluebird at Walmart?