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Yesterday, after writing the post about how to best manufacture spend post-Vanilla, I went ahead and dumped Bluebird. I’ve heard of many ways people have done it, and the different sequences of opening/closing, and all the conflicting rules about switching from Bluebird to Serve.
Here’s how I did it:
- Applied for a Serve card by following this promo link to get a $50 credit after two direct deposits of $250 or more (I plan to do this with Amazon Payments in May)
- Yes, WITH my Bluebird account still open
- Of course I got an “account being reviewed” message because you can’t have a Bluebird and a Serve account at the same time
- So then I called Bluebird CS to close account
- Then Serve CS to open the pending account
- Seconds after I hung up, I got a “Welcome to Serve” email
- I did NOT use the exact same registration information. Address yes, but different email and phone number
- It took multiple representatives to approve and confirm the account (all sounded outsourced)
- They gave me zero hassle about it
- There was no mention of any waiting period
- But they did tell me I could not have both accounts simultaneously
- My account had to be manually approved by a CS rep
- I was on hold for-ev-er. I’m talking nearly two hours!!! I put it on speaker and played Scrabble online – so clear out a chunk of time when you call!
Now, when I log into the website, it says I will receive my new Serve card in 7-10 days, at which time I can add payees and do my first load with a credit card.
I plan to try using different cards from different banks to see if I get charged any cash advance fees. I will start with small amounts. Some banks are talked about on Flyertalk, others not. I want to try Chase, Barclays, US Bank, Amex, FIA, and Citi, and Capital One.
I will do a test payment to a CC and to a manually added payee to test out the Bill Pay function (should be the exact same system as Bluebird).
I do not expect this to be the points-generating machine that Bluebird was. I will, however, load up to the maximum each month to pay my rent and a couple of small utility bills. In that regard, I am still earning points on regular bills.
More updates after the card is in hand, activated, and loaded up! Bye, Bluebird.
Also see: this post from Travel with Grant to read about a similar experience converting over.
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