CVS Changes Its Rules Again: New Gift Card Limits, ID Requirements

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Are you still buying gift cards at CVS to load your Serve account at Family Dollar for paying bills and meeting credit card minimum spending requirements?

Via The Forward Cabin, CVS is changing its policies on buying gift cards.  Until recently, folks have usually been able to buy up to $5,000 in gift cards per day, and didn’t have to show identification for transactions under $1,000.

But now CVS only allows a maximum of $2,000 in gift cards per person, per day.  And for any purchase of $300 or more, you’ll have to show ID.

CVS Changes Its Rules Again New Gift Card Limits ID Requirements
If You’re Still Buying Gift Cards at CVS, the Rules Have Changed (Again!)

What Does This Mean?

The Forward Cabin posted a memo from Cary Chaney (yes, the same Carey Chaney who issued the infamous Vanilla Reload death memo!) describing the changes which took effect October 27, 2014.
CVS Changes Its Rules Again New Gift Card Limits ID Requirements
Memories of Vanilla Reloads – Cary Chaney’s Back at It! (Photo: The Forward Cabin)

If you buy lots of gift cards at CVS, this change will affect you.  Because your ID will be scanned into CVS’s computer system, there’s no way around the $2,000 per person, per day limit, even if you go to a different store.

Most folks buy the $500 variable load gift cards, to minimize the ~$5 purchase fee.  Many of us avoided having our ID scanned by doing separate transactions for each gift card.  But now CVS will always ask for identification, unless you load less than $300.

CVS Changes Its Rules Again New Gift Card Limits ID Requirements
The New Rules Apply to All Prepaid Debit & Gift Cards

And there’s a discussion on FlyerTalk reporting that some CVS stores made the change early.

It sounds like CVS is tightening up its rules to crack down on gift card fraud.  And the memo specifically warns cashiers to look out for folks who try to break up their transactions to avoid these new restrictions.

This practice is called “structuring” and it’s when you break up a large transaction (say $2,000 worth of gift cards) into smaller transactions to avoid having your ID scanned.  Stores like CVS scan identification to protect against fraud and money laundering.

For most of us, this won’t be more than a minor inconvenience.  But if you’re someone who’s been buying thousands of dollars in gift cards per day at CVS, these new policies will definitely slow you down!

You might want to bring an authorized user along on your CVS shopping trips from now on!  😉

Bottom Line

CVS has issued a memo with new rules concerning the purchase of gift cards.  Many folks buy gift cards with a credit card to load to their Serve account at Family Dollar, then pay bills that can’t normally be paid with a credit card.

But now you’re limited to buying a maximum of $2,000 in gift cards per person, per day.  And any purchase over $300 will require you to have your identification scanned.

Until recently, the limits were $5,000 per person, per day, and ID required for purchases of $1,000 or more.

This will only be an issue for folks who buy large amounts of gift cards at CVS.  For most, it will be an inconvenience (having to scan ID).

Will this new policy affect you?   Please let me know in the comments!

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