How to Get a Target Prepaid REDcard If It’s Not Available in Your State

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Update:   You can no longer load Target Prepaid REDcard with debit cards or gift cards.

Many folks are excited about the American Express Target Prepaid REDcard, which allows you to use a credit card to directly add funds to your account!

Especially because starting April 16, 2015, you’ll only  be able to load AMEX Serve with AMEX credit cards.

However, the Target Prepaid REDcard is only available in certain states.

How To Get A Target Prepaid REDCard If Its Not Available In Your State

So Are You Out of Luck If the AMEX Prepaid REDcard Isn’t Available at Stores in Your State?

I’ll show you how you can still get your hands on the Target Prepaid REDcard!

What’s the Target Prepaid REDcard?

Link:   Why the New Prepaid REDcard Beats Bluebird & Serve!

The Target REDcard is a prepaid card, similar to the AMEX Bluebird and Serve cards.  You can load the REDcard by linking your bank account or debit card.  And, for now at least, you can add funds with a credit card at the register at Target Stores!

But I don’t know how long this will last!

How To Get A Target Prepaid REDCard If Its Not Available In Your State

Plus You’ll Get 5% Off at Target and Free Shipping When You Order Online!

You can load up to $2,500 per day and a maximum of $5,000 per month at Target stores.  Keep in mind, you can only have 1 AMEX prepaid card.  So if you already have an AMEX Bluebird or Serve account, you will have to close this account first.

Don’t Over Do It!

If you decide to get the Target Prepaid REDcard, take it slow!

Some folks have said they’ve received emails from Target which state their accounts will be shutdown for suspicious activity.  This could be a hoax.  But it’s also important to note overdoing it could upset your credit card issuer.

How To Get A Target Prepaid REDCard If Its Not Available In Your State

If the Bank Thinks You’re Abusing Their Rewards Program, You Could Be Blacklisted!

You can prevent this by:

  • Starting Out Slow – If you suddenly start charging $5,000 each month at Target, the bank is likely going to take notice!
  • Using Your Card in Other Ways – Make purchases at places other than Target.
  • Using More Than 1 Card – Spread out your purchases, instead of using 1 card to load the entire $5,000 month

How to Get a Target Prepaid REDcard, If It’s NOT Offered in Your Area

Link:   Target Prepaid REDcard Locations

The Target Prepaid REDcard isn’t available everywhere!  But even if you live in places like California, Illinois, or Texas where you can’t yet pick up a Target Prepaid REDcard at your local store, you can still get one!  Here’s how!

1.   Have a Friend Get a Target Prepaid REDcard for You!

Do you have a friend who lives in 1 of these states?

How To Get A Target Prepaid REDCard If Its Not Available In Your State

These States Are Seeing RED!

The list of locations within each state may not be up to date.  So it’s a good idea to call the store first!

Your friend could grab a Target Prepaid REDcard a temporary card for you!  Target has 3 different types of REDcards including a credit card, debit card, and the prepaid card.

How To Get A Target Prepaid REDCard If Its Not Available In Your State

Make Sure Your Friend Gets the Right Card!

When they pick up the card they’ll need to provide:

  • A driver’s license
  • Date of birth
  • Social Security number
  • Phone number

They can use their own information to get the temporary card because you’ll add your own details when you officially register online.

Your friend can send the card to you in the mail.  But all you really need is the card number and security code to register.  Once you register, your permanent card should arrive in the mail within 7 to 10 business days.

2.   Get the Target Prepaid REDcard on Your Next Trip!

You don’t have to live in participating state to get the Target Prepaid REDcard.  If you have plans to visit an area where Target Prepaid REDcard is available, stop by a store and pick 1 up!

3.   Buy Your New Card Online

If all else fails, you can buy a Target Prepaid REDcard online for ~$30.  You can find services that sell them online or check out ebay.

How To Get A Target Prepaid REDCard If Its Not Available In Your State

This Option Is a Bit Pricey Considering It Costs $0 to $5 for a Prepaid REDcard at the Store

But it may be worth it for some folks!

Load Your Card at Most Target Stores in the US

You can add funds by credit card to your Target Prepaid REDcard at (almost) any Target store, regardless if they carry REDcard or not.

However, according to Flyertalk, some folks have had issues with using the card in North Carolina.  And others have reported being unable to load the prepaid REDcard with a credit card at the Target on Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn, New York.

Bottom Line

The Target Prepaid REDcard is an excellent replacement for the AMEX Serve card, which will only accept online loads with AMEX credit cards starting April 16, 2015.

Currently, you can add funds to the prepaid REDcard directly with a credit card at most Target registers!  But I don’t know how long this will last!

Target Prepaid REDcard is only available in 17 states.  If you don’t live in these states, you can still get it!  You can have a friend pick up a card for you or get 1 yourself if your travels bring you to a place that carries them.

Another option is to pay ~$30 for your prepaid REDcard through an online service or ebay.

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Editorial Disclaimer: Neither the responses below nor the editorial content on this page are provided or commissioned by the bank advertisers, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertisers. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of the bank advertisers. It is not the bank advertisers’ responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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45 responses to “How to Get a Target Prepaid REDcard If It’s Not Available in Your State

  1. I am an experienced ebay purchaser (and occasional seller) and I must warn anyone who wants to buy from ebay. Make sure the person you are buying from has several POSITIVE reviews before buying. Don’t look just at the total of reviews but actually go in and see that they are positive. Some people who never finalize their purchase still get a review, mostly negative, but you cannot see that until you click on them and read them. Be careful.

  2. A map with state names would help. Hah.

  3. I have one RedCard that I picked up on a trip last Fall, and I have been wishing I could get a second one for my spouse. Never thought of ebay! What an enterprising idea for someone who lives in one of the lucky states. Go capitalism!

  4. Daraius, can you load the redcard with money from a target gift card? My local grocery store sells those, which would be nice to get the extra grocery bonus.

  5. @Michael K, you can’t load with Target gift cards. It pops up on the cashier’s screen when loading.

  6. Mine cost me $5 in the store, but I see you mention that it can cost “$0 to $5” in the store. I’m thinking of having my wife get one, so I’m curious about the $0 possibility. Are they just $0 in some stores and $5 in others?

    Not a big deal to pay $5 considering the benefits of the card. I’m mainly curious in case I tell others I know about it.

  7. Robyn Trickel Barrett Dowd

    The Target Redcard debit card can be loaded at Target with a Chase credit card, and then used to pay a bill? My girlfriend just got a card and needs help getting her $5,000 spending limit completed. Her mortgage company won’t let her use the credit card.

  8. @Cash Back – yes, 0 dollars in some stores, 5 in others.

  9. @Robyn Trickel Barret Dowd

    That’s what I intend to do with my Redcard, load it with my chase credit card and then pay off my mortgage. However, I have not heard of anyone actually doing that. I have heard of people getting fraud alerts for trying to load the red card with a credit card which makes me wonder if I can load 2500 and then pay my mortgage with it. I also have another card that has a $1000 minimum spend limit that I’d like to load the redcard with and then load the remainder with visa gift cards to get maximum points, but it’s all a mystery right now.

    I’m awaiting my redcard in the mail and will report back my findings.

  10. @cash back credit card fan, there are certain Targets that do not charge an initial fee to obtain the card, such as in Maryland.

  11. eBay PROHIBITS the sell of Target Prepaid REDcard. The listings that you see on eBay come and go as eBay takes them down regularly. The article should note that; this information can be verified by emailing/calling eBay.

    If you’re not sure whether your local Target store has it, call the store, but make sure to ask for the prepaid card specifically. It’s been available since Oct 2014.

    If you want to have a friend/family get one for you, make sure to have them ACTIVATE the card at the register (otherwise it will be useless); it can be done by loading as little as a penny to the card.

    The permanent card in your name has different account number and security code, plus as soon as you activate the permanent card, the temporary one becomes disables, so you don’t have to worry about your friend/family having access to your account.

    P.S. REDcard works on calendar schedule, so if get one now you will receive the permanent one in 10 days and be able to load the $5K March limit to it!

  12. @ The person concerned about FA (fraud alerts) from the credit card company: You can usually get around this by loading uneven amounts (i.e. $499.85 as opposed to $500) per transaction. Plus some banks offer text service, if you sign up, where they send you a text and if you reply from your phone they unfreeze the acct. You can also call the credit card company in advance.

    Usually this happens at first, if it is to happen, until the bank’s computers learn your shopping behavior.

  13. When I pay a bill with the check option on the prepaid card. That person doesn’t get charged a fee, like when you use a credit card, correct?

  14. Daraius, do you know which credit cards you can definitely use to load the redcard and accumulate points/cashback? The terms and conditions of the Amex blue cash card, for example, specifically spell out that “eligible purchases do NOT include (among others) purchases and reloading of prepaid cards”, Which defeats the purpose?

  15. The terms SPECIFICALLY say there are no credit card loads, which leads me to believe this loop hole will soon be shut down. It says “CASH RELOAD AT TARGET STORES” it doesn’t say credit reload.

    Are there fees to add money to Prepaid REDcard?

    Prepaid REDcard does not charge fees to add money to your Account. You can add money to your Prepaid REDcard Account in many convenient ways:

    Direct Deposit
    Cash Reload at all US Target store locations
    Checking or Savings Account
    Debit Card

  16. REDcard has been around for 6 months now, during which time people have enjoyed its benefits loading with a credit card. It has the same terms that it always had; the credit card loads on Target DO show up as cash load and people are able to load with credit card despite that terminology.

    I suspect you already know this since you’re trying to scare people off REDcard, posting here every other day a new BS argument as to why OTHER people shouldn’t get this.

  17. Inexpensive fair and companion pass on SWA had me traveling from Vegas to Phoenix this past weekend. Wasn’t available in any stores. Finally informed it was being test marketed in the Tuscon area only. Disappointed but was still able to see spring training baseball so not a total loss..

  18. Here’s a good example about why buying the Target prepaid REDcard (Redbird) on eBay is not safer then buying it from people who’ve sold it to hundreds of users on blogs and have countless references from them.

    Someone just sold 5 un-activated REDcards on eBay:

    Not only you CAN’T register with an unactivated card for the permanent one, but all the reports that I’ve read of people trying to activate these cards at Target stores that don’t sell them have been negative; they are not able to activate them. The last such failed attempt was reported today on the FlyerTalk thread.

  19. Here is my first experience loading the card. I asked the cashier to load $2500 and she typed the amount in. The screen prompted “Not enough amount” It did not say – maximum amount exceeded. The manager came in and asked the cashier to do in 3 separate transactions – $1000 + $1000 + $500. That worked. Did anybody have similar experience ?

  20. I purchased two partially activated cards on eBay a couple weeks ago. They arrived in the mail and I activated them very easily on AMEX’s Target prepaid card website. I received my permanent card in the mail within 5 days here in Arkansas.

    When I tried to load the cards at the Target store in Little Rock I was informed that since they do not sell the cards they are prohibited from loading them at the stores. the customer service attendant said “I don’t know why I can’t load these, but I was told people were trying to do stuff with these cards that they werent suppossed to.” I just said, “Hmm..don’t know anything about that.”

    I guess I will just tried to load in the next time I’m at Memphis since Tennessee is on the list of having these cards.

  21. @M.Rush, many Target employees know little to nothing about Redbird. It has nothing to do with the fact that they don’t carry the temporary cards (most stores around the country don’t), it has something to do with the Target POS (software system) in Arkansas. Likewise, you can’t load Redbird in North Carolina either. You can in the rest 48 states.

  22. I went to the store in Superior, CO on 4/8/15. This store does not sell the prepaid Redcard anymore. The CSR told me the cards were pulled “sometime before Christmas.”

  23. I am in Georgia, and the cards are not sold here. But they are sold in Alabama, which is 2.5 hours away. I went 2 weeks ago and bought 3 of them. No problem at all loading them here in Atlanta.

  24. Hi! If anyone is looking the get their hands on a Target Prepaid Red Card but do not live anywhere close to one, please feel free to contact me. I recently made another trip out to MD to grab a stack of them. Each one has been pre-loaded with a dollar. My fee is $25 per card. Guaranteed that card is pre-loaded and therefore, pre-activated. If not, I will refund your money promptly.

    Once you make a payment to me (I prefer Venmo), I will email/text/call you with the card information for you to finish activating online and change your information. Once you have done that, your permanent card will be on it’s way to you, and the temporary card will be deactivated. I can, of course send the temporary card to you if you wish, however, it really isn’t necessary.

    I currently have 5 more on hand. First come first serve!

    Email is [email protected]

  25. I’m really interested in doing this to earn some miles, but I’m going to be out of the country for most of the year… is there some kind of work-around for those of us who are actually traveling? I thought it was something that could be done online.

  26. Kendal, you can only load Redbird with a credit card at a (US) Target store. You can load it online via a debit card only, $200/day $1000/month limit.

    Having said that, some (most?) Target stores don’t check to make sure the credit card or Redbird is in your name, so if there’s someone you can trust, you can have them load it while you’re abroad. If you go that route, obviously have them try to load it while you’re still in town.

  27. Anyone have any experience of using it in New Jersey?
    I’m thinking of driving to Pennsylvania to get one since it’s not available in NJ yet………

  28. Thinking of getting this card to continue paying my rent with a cc, since I can’t use Serve anymore. Does anyone here have experience loading these cards in SF Bay Area Target stores (especially the South Bay or Peninsula)?

  29. @Jackie, people report being able to load fine in NJ, there’s a couple of stores that might have lower limits (as do several NYC stores) like $1K/day or $500/day.

    @Jess I’ve only seen positive reports from people loading in San Francisco area.

    State-wide, there’s still no loads in North Carolina or Arkansas, also not in Vermont since there’s no Target stores in Vermont, the rest of the states you can load Redbird.

  30. I sell cards via eBay and have had no issues (except for ignorant Target employees in my area) with my buyers registering for their permanent card online until about 15 minutes ago. A buyer reported that after he registered his information, he received this message in the form of an alert box:

    “You Account is being reviewed – Thanks for your application. However, we need additional information from you before we can approve your Account. Please check your email for further instructions. Don’t forget to check your spam folder.
    If you have a temporary card, you can check your balance.”

    As of right now my buyer has not received that email they talked about but we’re in communication for when it does show up.
    This is the first time that I’ve ever seen or heard of this. Has anyone else experienced this?

  31. I actually sell Redcards for $20 each. Cheapest out there. Whatsapp me 2485080871 instant reply and great and friendly service

  32. Can we load redbird with credit cards. Called amex and they said only cash debit card or direct deposit. Is this true?

  33. Chris, don’t worry about it and load away! Of the many hundreds of people who have gotten the Redbird from me, there’s been a steady few who like yourself are not too familiar with it and hear something like that or read something, or are worried because no where in the legal disclosure of Redbird does it say explicitly that you can load it with credit cards.

    Long story short, Amex and Target consider credit cards as cash, for the purpose of loading Redbird, and that is something that you can read in the REDcard legal page. It’s been 7 months now (since Redbird started) that people have been loading with credit cards, despite the fact that customer service will read a script when asked and interpret it verbatim.

    P.S. For other general Redbird questions, take a look at my Redbird FAQ post:

  34. Redbird is officially dead…. No more credit card loads starting today, May 6 2015. Just a heads up 🙁

  35. @Marc – you are correct, I went into a Brooklyn store today and cashier tried to load it and I’ve used my card to swipe. CC transaction went thru and I was asked to sign but then on her screen notice popped up saying only $0.00 can be added for this type of transaction. She called the manager who mentioned that Target only accepts cash & debit to load them and mentioned last Wed (05/06/2015).

  36. stanfurdbites

    But can we still load with visa giftcards?

  37. I was also wondering if we can load with visa giftcards.

  38. Yes, you can load with a pin-based visa gift card, see this post for more info:

    However there have been a few stores that have not allowed it, mostly in major cities. You won’t know until you try, or unless someone from your city gives you feedback.

  39. All you guys running these websites need to go back and add in big letters “DOES NOT WORK ANY LONGER” to articles. It could save newbies a lot of trouble wasting time on something useless….

  40. Hey all, just a quick reminder that I still do provide temporary activated Redbird cards info via email, see this fore details:

    In the next couple of days I will also update the guide to loading Redbird with gift cards, to include step by step instructions on loading at registers with the new software after the POS upgrade:

  41. I just bought a prepaid card from NoonRadar, Great, fast service! Within an hour, I got my card number, registered it and it’s already active. I wonder if having an Amex card made the process faster but my registration was complete almost instantly. The explanation on how to proceed with filling the info online for the card were easy to follow. The only hiccup was trying to register with my iphone, I got a message they were experiencing tech difficulties so I logged into my Windows laptop, and it went in like a charm. Thank you NoonRadar,. I will definitely buy from you again if a family member wants a card.

  42. Now you can purchase the activated temporary Redbird (Target prepaid REDcard) directly from my online store at It is instantly delivered to your email address.

    You will also find there any Redbird-related info you need to know before and after registering online for the permanent card; registration requirements, guide to loading with the new Target POS, FAQ, etc.

  43. Just got a Red Card from NoonRadar. All went through without issue. Expecting to get the physical card in a week or so.

    Quick question – there is an option to add money to my redcard account with a debit card on the web site. Does that work? Seems like that’s more convenient than having to go to a Target store. What’s the downside/gotcha with that option?

  44. @John – no downside or gotcha with loading the prepaid REDcard via a debit card online, other than the limits of doing so, which are $200/day & $1K/month loading.

    Thank you for your purchase.