The Bluebird prepaid card, offered by American Express, has emerged as a popular alternative for those seeking a convenient way to manage their finances without the commitment of a traditional bank account or credit card. The FDIC-insured card provides a secure and user-friendly method for making purchases and paying bills, all with minimal fees and the backing of the well-established American Express brand.
Users of the Bluebird card can enjoy the benefits of managing their account through an easy-to-use mobile app, making the prepaid card not only a viable option but a go-to solution for individuals seeking financial flexibility and control. Additionally, the Bluebird card’s low fees and absence of a monthly fee make it an even more attractive choice for consumers who want to avoid unnecessary expenses often associated with other prepaid debit cards.
In this Bluebird credit card review, we will delve into the features, benefits, and any potential drawbacks associated with this American Express offering. By providing an unbiased assessment of the Bluebird prepaid card, we aim to empower you with the information necessary to make an informed decision about whether it fits your financial needs and lifestyle.
Bluebird Credit Card Features
No Monthly Fees
Bluebird by American Express has no monthly fees, making it an affordable option for those looking to use a prepaid card.
Setting up direct deposit with the Bluebird card is easy and allows users to receive their paycheck or government benefits directly to their account without any fees.
Users can access cash at ATMs that are in the MoneyPass network, free of charge. For out-of-network ATMs, a fee may apply.
Cash can be loaded onto the Bluebird card at participating Walmart locations. Additionally, there are other cash reload options available through various retail partners, though fees may apply.
Mobile Check Deposits
Bluebird enables users to deposit checks easily through their mobile device by taking a photo of the check using the Bluebird Mobile App.
Online Bill Pay
Managing and paying bills online is convenient with Bluebird’s online bill pay feature, which allows users to pay various types of bills directly from their account.
Bluebird offers the ability to create subaccounts for family members or others in order to manage and monitor their spending while still maintaining control over the primary account.
Sending and Receiving Money
Users can send and receive money between Bluebird accounts quickly, making it simple to share funds or pay friends and family.
Funds in the Bluebird account are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) up to the maximum allowable limit, providing peace of mind.
The Bluebird card comes with purchase protection, which can help protect eligible purchases made on the card against accidental damage or theft for up to 90 days.
Roadside Assistance Hotline
In case of a roadside emergency, Bluebird cardholders have access to a 24/7 roadside assistance hotline that can provide help during unexpected situations.
Global Assist Hotline
When traveling more than 100 miles away from home, Bluebird users can access the Global Assist Hotline, which offers assistance with various travel-related situations, such as lost passports or medical emergencies.
Fees and Limitations
ATM Withdrawal Fee
Bluebird American Express cardholders can withdraw cash from ATMs. There is a fee of $2.50 for each withdrawal at non-MoneyPass® ATMs. Keep in mind that ATM operators may charge additional fees.
To avoid the $2.50 ATM withdrawal fee, cardholders can use MoneyPass® ATMs. With more than 30,000 MoneyPass® ATM locations nationwide, Bluebird cardholders have fee-free access to withdraw cash at these locations.
The Bluebird card does not charge transaction fees for point-of-sale purchases or online transactions. This makes it an ideal option for daily spending without incurring additional costs.
Cash Reload Fee
Adding cash to your Bluebird card is simple and can be done at participating retailers. However, a cash reload fee of up to $3.95 may apply depending on the retailer. It is essential to consider this fee when planning to reload your card with cash.
There are no inactivity fees associated with the Bluebird card. This is a beneficial feature for individuals who might not use the card regularly but want to maintain it as an option for occasional spending.
Foreign Transaction Fee
When making purchases or withdrawing cash outside of the United States, a foreign transaction fee of 2.7% applies to the transaction amount. This fee should be considered when traveling or making purchases from international merchants.
Card Replacement Fee
In the event that your Bluebird card is lost, stolen, or damaged, the first card replacement is free. For any additional card replacements, a $5 fee applies.
The Bluebird card has no activation fee, making it an affordable choice for those looking for a prepaid debit card option without incurring additional costs upfront.
Comparing Bluebird to Competitors
The Bluebird card by American Express bears similarities to the Walmart MoneyCard, as both are FDIC-insured prepaid debit cards and offer many of the same services like direct deposit, online bill pay, and mobile check deposit. However, the Walmart MoneyCard charges a $5 monthly fee, while the Bluebird card does not have a monthly fee, making it a more cost-effective option.
American Express Serve
The American Express Serve is another prepaid debit card in the Amex family, offering similar features and benefits to the Bluebird card. Both cards allow users to deposit checks, pay bills, and receive direct deposits. However, the Serve card has three variations with monthly fees ranging from $0 to $7.95, depending on the chosen plan and specific features. In contrast, Bluebird has no monthly fee, making it an attractive choice for users looking for a low-cost prepaid debit card.
|Features||Bluebird||American Express Serve|
|Online Bill Pay||Yes||Yes|
Visa and Mastercard Prepaid Debit Cards
Compared to prepaid debit cards from Visa and Mastercard, the Bluebird card offers a competitive edge by not charging a monthly fee. Some Visa and Mastercard prepaid debit cards may have monthly fees ranging from $3 to $9.95, depending on the card issuer and plan, which may make Bluebird a more budget-friendly choice.
Additionally, Bluebird provides access to Amex Offers, allowing users to save money on various purchases. This feature is typically available only with American Express credit cards and is not offered on Visa or Mastercard prepaid debit cards.
In summary, the Bluebird card by American Express is an economical and feature-rich option in the world of prepaid debit cards. With no monthly fee, a wide range of banking features, and access to exclusive Amex Offers, it outshines many competitors in the prepaid card market, including Walmart MoneyCard, American Express Serve, and certain Visa and Mastercard prepaid debit cards.
Managing Your Bluebird Account
Bluebird offers a mobile app that allows you to manage your account conveniently on your smartphone. The app is available for both iOS and Android devices. With the mobile app, you can check your account balance, view transaction history, deposit checks with mobile check deposit, pay bills, and transfer money to other Bluebird members or external accounts. The app’s user interface is straightforward, making it easy for you to navigate and manage your finances.
Managing your Bluebird account is simplified with online access at Bluebird.com. The website offers similar features to the mobile app, such as checking your balance, reviewing transaction details, and setting up direct deposit. Furthermore, you can also disable or replace your card, update your personal information, and set up account alerts to receive notifications for important account activities. Bluebird’s account management system is user-friendly and ensures you always have control over your finances.
Bluebird offers customer service through various channels to assist its cardholders. You can contact the Bluebird customer service team via phone, email, or social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook. Their customer service representatives are available 24/7, providing support for any issues you may encounter. Additionally, Bluebird.com also features an extensive FAQs section, where you can find quick answers to common questions.
Bluebird provides budgeting features to help you keep track of your spending, set up financial goals, and monitor your account activity. By categorizing your transactions, you can easily identify your spending patterns and adjust your budget accordingly. Additionally, you can set up automatic transfers to your Bluebird SetAside Account, which acts as a savings account and encourages you to save money consistently.
Money Management Tools
The Bluebird account comes with several money management tools designed to help you stay on top of your finances. These tools include:
- Transaction History: Allows you to view all of your transactions in detail for easy monitoring.
- Spending Analysis: Automatically categorizes your expenses to give you insights into your spending habits.
- SetAside Account: Lets you create a separate savings account within your Bluebird account to help you save money for specific goals or future expenses.
- Account Alerts: You can customize account alerts and notifications to keep you informed about your account activities.
By using these tools effectively, you can manage your finances efficiently with the Bluebird prepaid debit card.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it a good choice?
Yes, the Bluebird American Express card is generally considered a good choice as a prepaid card because it has many desirable features, such as no monthly fees, no bank account required, and the ability to add family members as users. Additionally, there are no foreign transaction fees, which can be helpful for those who travel internationally.
Does it help credit?
No, the Bluebird American Express card is a prepaid debit card and not a traditional credit card. It does not report to credit bureaus, so using this card will not help build your credit history.
Bluebird vs Chime?
Both the Bluebird American Express and Chime cards are popular options for prepaid debit cards. However, there are a few key differences between the two. One of the main differences is that Bluebird does not charge monthly fees, whereas Chime typically does. Also, Bluebird does not require a bank account, making it more accessible to individuals without traditional banking services.
What’s the limit?
There are limits on cash reloads, withdrawals, and online bill payments with the Bluebird American Express card. According to the search results, specific limits may vary depending on the type of transaction, but exact figures are not readily available. It is recommended to refer to the Bluebird American Express card’s terms and conditions or contact their customer service for detailed information.
Where to buy?
You can request a Bluebird American Express prepaid debit card online for free, or it can be purchased at participating retail stores, such as Walmart, for a nominal fee of $5.
Bluebird American Express cardholders have access to customer service through multiple channels. You can reach customer support by phone or via the secure online portal provided on the Bluebird website or mobile app. Keep in mind that having your card information handy when contacting customer service will likely help expedite the process.