American Express Serve adds Rite Aid and Dollar General to free cash reload network


Note: On January 8, 2016 American Express sent out a notice to a large number of Bluebird & Serve cardholders informing them that loading capabilities on their accounts had been terminated. For more information, see: Amex kills Bluebird and Serve for manufactured spend

American Express published a press release today announcing the addition of Rite Aid and Dollar General to Serve’s “Free Cash Reload Network”.  This means that eligible Serve account holders can now reload their cards at Rite Aid and Dollar General.

Serve adds Rite Aid and Dollar General

There is no official word yet about which forms of payment are accepted for Cash Reloads at Rite Aid or Dollar General.  According to contributors to this Reddit thread, some stores do accept debit cards.  It looks like policies vary from store to store.  I doubt any stores will accept credit cards, but it might be worth a try.

UPDATE 12/2/2015: I succeeded in reloading Serve with prepaid debit cards at Rite Aid today.  The cashier didn’t think that debit cards were allowed, but she checked a policy document and found that debit was OK.

Here is the first part of the press release:

American Express Serve has joined forces with Dollar General and Rite Aid to expand its Free Cash Reload network, allowing eligible Account holders2 to add cash to their cards for free at thousands of additional locations around the country. With this move, American Express continues to have the largest Free Cash Reload network in the United States1, now with over 45,000 Dollar General®, CVS/pharmacy, Family Dollar®, Rite Aid, Walmart®, and participating 7-ELEVEN® locations.

2 Serve Free Cash Reload Account holders, as well as Serve Account holders who activated and registered their Serve Account before August 5, 2015, have access to the Free Cash Reload network.

The full document can be found here.

Hat Tip: Doctor of Credit

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[…] fair to say manufactured spend hasn’t died. In just the last few weeks Target has been replaced by Rite Aid and Dollar General as places where gift cards can be unloaded with minimal effort. Additionally, Bluebird continues to […]


Attempted a load at my local Dollar General today. Cashier had no clue how to load a Serve card, and only knew how to load Green Dot cards.

[…] gift cards dry up; and other manufactured spend opportunities, like REDbird, come and go.  While new opportunities occasionally arise, the trend is unquestionably negative.  Opportunities are dying faster than they […]


I did try RA today. There were about 6 options to reload the my One VIP card and none of the choice has a Debit card option, so the cashier said choose the last one “General something, I can’t remember clearly” which will charge $4.95 for the reload. I said to cashier why it’s not free, and she answered it always has fees. So I ask the cashier to put $495.05 for reload and plus $4.95 fee, which end at $500 for total. After I swiped my VGC (Sunrise Bank), it didn’t go through.

Not sure if I choose the right payment option, anyone have suggestions?



I tried with the Amex Serve Reload option in the middle of the screen and it didn’t go through. I have a One VIP. A $3.95 fee did appear, so I was trying to load $496.05. Not sure if I’m selecting the wrong option. Any thoughts?


Might’ve been the wrong option. Looks like I need to select the Fee Free reload.


RA in San Diego has inconsistent policies, but gradually moving to ‘no gift card’, even if pin-enabled for Serve loads. Great process when they allow you to do it, but I have a narrow outlook for Serve/BB in 2016.

[…] fair to say manufactured spend hasn’t died. In just the last few weeks Target has been replaced by Rite Aid and Dollar General as places where gift cards can be unloaded with minimal effort. Additionally, Bluebird continues to […]


do you guys think that the reason most places only accept cash is because of actual fraud or because of MS?


Just FYI I was told in NJ that it’s cash only to reload Serve at Rite Aid. I was just looking to load $100 from a Vanilla Visa I actually received as a gift.


Easy peasy ar RA last night $300 Visa Debit that I purchased online at Staples a week ago. I selected the AMEX Serve Free Load option and then swiped my card. Super fast!


The DG in my neighborhood had a clerk willing to do the load, but had no idea how to do it. The menu on his register screen didn’t help (9 action items, but none were ‘reloads’). Does anyone know what the DG clerks need to do? I hear it’s possible, but one has to know the trick.


I’ve had no problems getting free loads with my Serve One VIP @ Dollar General. The cashier scans a barcode from one of several cards on a ring by the register. Their system is really fast. Transaction takes less time than Walmart load.


RA is great, at least in my area. Friendly cashiers, multiple loads no big deal. Only downside is no Kates for autoloading and few cashiers, so you need to be ready to let other customers check out and not hog the line. Dollar General is another story, at least in my area. They want cash only to load any prepaid, allegedly due to fraud issues.






I live in the North Seattle area. Anyone have experience in my neck of the woods? I want to get this right–I can buy Visa gift cards at Safeway with my CC and then load my Serve one VIP at Rite Aid using said GC? Do I do so at a cash register or do they have a special ATM like WM? I haven’t done any of this yet, so kind of afraid to jump in.

Kent C

Not all RA are allowing this or know how to do it, which is the position you should take with any “ideas” or “methods”, so don’t go hog wild and buy too many GC you can’t liquidate or use normally. Test the waters. No ATM, has to be person to person which explains the human inconsistency element.

Mother Fussbudget

Me: ZERO (0) success buying Visa GC’s at Safeway since early 2015.
I buy my GC’s at Rite Aid (limit $3000/day). But I haven’t tried reloading there – just saw this notice. Spent this afternoon in Auburn loading a $500 Vanilla GC to Serve $49 at a time (limit imposed on the Walmart Moneycenter Kiosk – KATE). That process took 30 minutes.


Would loading bluebird work?