Everything You Need to Know Before You Switch From AMEX Serve to the Target Prepaid REDcard!

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

Million Mile Secrets reader, David, commented:

I’m wanting to cancel my AMEX Serve account to open a Target Prepaid REDcard account.  I recently sent 2 checks that have already been issued and the amounts have been deducted from my account.

If I cancel the Serve card and those checks have not yet been deposited by the payees, will the checks bounce?  Thank you for all your advice!

If David closes his Serve account, his outstanding checks shouldn’t be impacted.  Find out why and other tips for switching to the AMEX Target Prepaid REDcard!

Everything You Need To Know Before You Switch From AMEX Serve To The Target Prepaid REDcard

What Steps Should You Take Before Moving From the AMEX Serve Card to the Target Prepaid REDcard?

What’s the Target Prepaid REDcard?

Link:   Why the New REDcard Beats Bluebird & Serve

Link:   How to Get the Target Prepaid REDcard If It’s Not Available in Your State

The Target Prepaid REDcard is the latest in a line of AMEX Prepaid cards, which also includes AMEX Serve and Bluebird.

Everything You Need To Know Before You Switch From AMEX Serve To The Target Prepaid REDcard

There Are Several Different Target REDcards, Make Sure You Get the Prepaid Card!

With the AMEX Target Prepaid REDcard you can:

  • Add money (via loading at the register at Target stores, linking your bank account, or linking your debit card)
  • Withdraw money from ATMs (free at Target and Allpoint Network ATMs)
  • Set-up direct deposit
  • Use online bill pay
  • Create sub-accounts (for example, your kids or your sitter)
  • Have NO monthly fees

But what sets this card apart is you can add funds to it directly with a credit card at most Target stores (at least for now!)

This makes it easy to earn points and meet the minimum spending requirements on credit cards.

Note:   Here’s how my post explaining how to get the Target Prepaid REDcard.

Unfortunately, you can only have 1 of the 3 AMEX prepaid cards.  And now AMEX Serve will only accept AMEX credit card for online reloads.  For these reasons many folks, like David, are making the switch to the Target Prepaid REDcard.

How to Close Your AMEX Serve Account

David can close his account by calling 800-954-0559.  But it seems that the AMEX Serve customer service folks aren’t well informed about closing an account.  So calling could make the process a lot more complicated.

Instead, David is likely better off closing his account online.

Closing your account online is easy.  Just log into your account and click the “Profile” tab.

Everything You Need To Know Before You Switch From AMEX Serve To The Target Prepaid REDcard

Click the Profile Tab to Get Started!

Then scroll to the bottom of the page and you’ll see the “Close Account” button.

Everything You Need To Know Before You Switch From AMEX Serve To The Target Prepaid REDcard

It Only Takes a Couple Clicks to Close Your Serve Account

Once David receives the confirmation email that his AMEX Serve account has been closed, he can activate his new Target Prepaid REDcard!

What If You Just Sent Out Checks or Have Money in Your Account?

Checks

David sent out checks that the payees haven’t cashed yet.  But the amount of the checks has already been taken out of his account.  So will those checks bounce if he closes his account?

The checks should still go through.  That’s because the money already was removed from his Serve account, so the check is funded.

Everything You Need To Know Before You Switch From AMEX Serve To The Target Prepaid REDcard

Because the Money Has Already Been Taken Out of David’s Account, the Checks Shouldn’t Bounce

According to Serve customer service, folks should wait 3 to 5 business days after sending a check for it to post before canceling account.

That said, if David has sent a check to pay an important bill, like his mortgage, he may want to err on the side of caution and wait until the check is cashed.

Remaining Balance

If David has any funds left in his account, Serve says they’ll send a check for any balance remaining in your account.

However, it’s a good idea for David to withdraw any funds and make sure the money is safely in his bank account before he begins to close his Serve account.  This should only take a few days, and it’s worth the wait to prevent any potential complication.

Everything You Need To Know Before You Switch From AMEX Serve To The Target Prepaid REDcard

Withdraw Your Money First!

Bottom Line

Many folks are closing their AMEX Serve account in order to open a new AMEX Target Prepaid REDcard account.

If you recently sent out checks, they should still go through, because the money has been taken out of your account.  This can take 3 to 5 business days.

But folks who have an important check pending may want to wait until the check is cashed, just to be sure there are no problems.

And if you have money left in your account, you may want to transfer it into your bank account 1st, even though Serve says they will send you a check.  You don’t want your money to wind up in limbo!

Once you’ve completed those steps, the easiest way to close your account is online.

You should receive an email confirming your account has been closed.  Then you’re ready to register for the AMEX Target Prepaid card!

Thanks for your question, David!

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17 responses to “Everything You Need to Know Before You Switch From AMEX Serve to the Target Prepaid REDcard!

  1. I just got the Redbird and assume “withdrawal” to my linked bank account would the same as it is with SERVE. How do you do that? I cannot see how to remove money directly back to my linked bank account, only how to put money on the Redbird from my bank account.

  2. I have been tracking this for last several months, I am not one quick to jump on short bandwagons. I recently went to a Target recently (don’t go much) and noticed mine is charging $5 for these cards. I’m not sure why some charge $0 and others charge $5, but I digress. My question is not if but when you can no longer do credit card loads at the stores, I believe this card is worthless then right? Or would there still be a mysterious benefit (outside of 5% at Target stores).

  3. I’ve been following the redcard closely and both me and my wife have one. I’ve heard some targets are making it harder to load via the regular checkout and you need to go to customer service. Any insight on how long you think this will last? Thanks!

  4. I’ve been following the redcard closely and both me and my wife have one. I’ve heard some targets are making it harder to load via the regular checkout and you need to go to customer service. Any insight on how long you think this will last? Thanks!

  5. KT, in the right side of the menu bar click on settings. Then under funding & transfers click on withdraw funds.

  6. I am using the RedCard prepaid for a month and it definitely helps in manufactured spending. I tend to carry a balance for a while on the redcard before I unload it to my bank account and I maintain a balance on the card. I also make a couple of billpays from the Redcard and occasionally use the card in Target. To withdraw money from the Redcard, log into your account and click on ‘Settings’ which will be on the top right corner. Once you click on it you will see ‘Withdraw Funds’ under ‘Fundings & Transfers’. If you already linked your bank account to redcard, then you can directly transfer the money to your bank account with that option.

  7. All your checks must have been deposited and cleared. Period. If your account says zero but there are checks uncashed, you will not be able to open a RB. I know from personal experience. Total PITA.

  8. so one question that has not been brought up on this topic is can you send money between these two accounts so you can capitalize on both features. For example, I have a bluebird/serve account (for the purpose of this question they are equal). I get a redcard account and set that to be my wife’s account with her info. Now I fund the redcard like normal and use the normal bill pay functions but when I need to do something that the other system can do, I do a bill pay to the other account (essentially transferring funds) and the use the other system. Would that work? Or would it be considere a giant red flag and risk both accounts shutdown?

  9. Greg and Prasana–thanks! Just what I needed.

  10. I used my new redcard to pay for my rent for the first time. It was great getting finally getting to be able to earn points on rent, and a killer way to manufacture spend.

    I’d love to hear from someone else who’s used it to pay someone with a check, as I had a question about something: did you get any kind of email notification when the payee cashed the check? I didn’t get anything at all, so had to call my landlord a few times to confirm they cashed the check. I also called redcard support and they said notifications should happen, but they’re very glitchy/hit or miss.

    What are other people’s experiences with this?

  11. @Matt – I use the checks to pay my lawn guy and have always gotten an e-mail when the check’s been cashed/deposited.

  12. Matt,

    I’ve paid my landlord several times and NEVER get a notification of any kind. I call them every month to check.

  13. Thank you @marvin and @sarah. Definitely seems like a YMMV situation. Would love to hear from others too if anyone is still out there 🙂

  14. @Doc:
    I can’t give a definitive answer to your question, but I have heard from one person that what you described works. I have not tested it myself though, so I cannot say for sure.

  15. Has anyone been able to load their Redcard in NC ?

  16. @Cash Back Credit Cards Fan
    I will give it a try then and see.. Because the RedCard takes care of the biggest issue, which is funding, and the bluebird takes care of the other biggest issue.. the occasional need for checks. I expect Bill pay will be fine in most cases, but some do require a paper check to be given on-site (i.e.: contractors, and other service folks).

  17. @Matt, Redbird sends you an email when it processed the check only, it doesn’t notify you when/if the check gets cashed out. I had someone tell me they lost it, I called Redbird cust service (855-306-7395) they investigated it to confirm it wasn’t cashed, then refunded me the money, all without any fees.

    @Se, currently Redbird can’t be loaded in North Carolina or Arkansas, it can in the rest of the states.