Office Depot discontinues Vanilla Reload cards

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Ever since May when I published “One card to rule them all,” I’ve received emails and tweets about once a week from different people with similar stories.  Almost all said that an Office Depot manager told them that Office Depot was no longer selling Vanilla Reload cards.  Each time I would run out to my local Office Depot and find the shelves still well stocked with the cards.  So, when JeffTheWanderer reported the same story a couple of weeks ago, I wasn’t too concerned.  This time, though, the story seems to be for real…

Last night, Travel By Points reported the following via Twitter:

Well-stocked OD pulled all Vanilla Reloads today after corporate notice. Mgr thinks it is nationwide. Hope not. … was there last night, full of them. Mom went tonight, all pulled. I didn’t believe her so I stopped by and confirmed myself… mgr quoted fraud and also IRS issues (biz owners paying employees with prepaids to avoid taxes).

Then, today, Toms FF Stuff reported:

@FrequentMiler @travelbypoints Vanilla Reloads are pulled. Tried today and manager brought out a memo to all stores to pull this morning.

I then called my local Office Depot and heard the same story.  They had received a memo stating that they would no longer stock Vanilla Reload cards.  I have since contacted both Office Depot and Incomm (the company that produces Vanilla Reload cards) to ask for their official stories.  I’ll report more when I hear back from them.

Why?

You might wonder why Office Depot would stop selling these cards.  The most likely reason (and the one that has been told to people asking) is that there has simply been too much fraud associated with these cards.  See “When thieves steal our points.”  It’s sad when crooks interfere with great point earning schemes!

Will they restock?

Since we haven’t heard an official story directly from Office Depot or Incomm yet, we can still hope that the memo we’ve heard about is incorrect or incomplete.  There’s always the possibility that Office Depot will restock with a new version of Vanilla Reload cards that are somehow more secure.  Do I think that will happen?  No, but one can always hope.

Alternatives

If you were counting on these cards, don’t worry, there are plenty of good alternatives.  On Monday I’ll publish some new findings, but for now consider the following:

  • Other stores besides Office Depot still sell Vanilla Reload cards.  However, it takes a bit more work to find ones that take credit cards.  For example, while many Walgreen store registers are hard coded to not accept credit cards for these purchases, some do allow it.  If it doesn’t work at one store, try another.  To find cards that get bonus points at drug stores, grocery stores, and so on, please see “Best Category Bonuses.”
  • It is still possible to get 5 Ultimate Rewards points per dollar!  Please see the “The 5X everywhere backup plan“.

Please stay tuned for more on Monday.  There are plenty of great opportunities still to be had!

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[…] Office Depot no longer sells Vanilla Reload cards (see “Office Depot discontinues Vanilla Reload cards“), many other stores do.  For example, many people have reported success buying Vanilla […]

[…] Everyday spend is a different animal. I think the most effective way to explain this is to go over some of the popular cards and the best uses for them. Keep in mind that everyone has their own preferences and goals, so these can vary from person to person. Also note that if you feel like more of an expert you can just skip directly to The Frequent Miler’s trick to earn 5 points per dollar on every purchase (although this trick may not work anymore). […]

[…] We started with a moment of silence for the end of Vanilla Reload cards at Office Depot (see “Office Depot discontinues Vanilla Reload cards“).  We then went on to discuss a number of opportunities that still exist.  Below […]

MeLovesVanilla

Mick…maybe your right. From now on I am going to spread the “love” to a couple of CVS. I am still going to get a lot, but not entirely in only one store. Will this be acceptable to you?

MeLovesVanilla

Mick…because this CVS deal will die soon like OD. I am trying to get as much points as possible before it does.

Mick

@MeLovesVanilla- no, it does not have to. there are far more CVS stores than OD stores. people need to approach this with common sense ( i know it is hard given the nature of this crowd and the blogs). 20 grand in one store in less than two weeks obviously shows up to loss prevention.

Biggles209

I asked one of the Bellevue OD managers why they had discontinued Vanilla Reloads. He said that he *thought* it was because people were using cash back credit cards to buy them. The OD systems were incorrectly coding the sale as tangible goods. A credit card company asked them to fix this, but they pulled the cards instead.

FrequentMiler

Biggles209: It’s certainly possible that OD discontinued them for this reason. I still think that losses due to fraud or a more likely explanation though.

[…] Reload cards.  As a result, most of the information below is now out of date.  See Office Depot discontinues Vanilla Reload cards and The reload game is […]

MeLovesVanilla

All…the first CVS that I was successful in buying VR with a credit card or prepaid card now only accepts cash or debit as payment. Just like OD, a memo(via email) from LP was sent to stop the cashiers from accepting prepaids or credit for these VR 🙁 . So sad…less than 2 weeks when this deal died on this particular CVS. I thing the main reason was me…I bought about 20K in less than 2 weeks span at this particular store. Fortunately, I have backup CVSs that keeps this deal alive…for the time being.

Mick

@MeLovesVanilla – gee ya think? why cant you take it slow and use common sense with this?

CHRIS

no VR at my 2 local cvs. stacks of greendots, but cash only.

CHRIS

Has anyone tried buying VR at walmart using CC? any success?
i saw someone buying VR from CVS. What best card to use besides AMEX hilton?

[…] Office Depot discontinues Vanilla Reload cards […]

[…] to the very active thread on FlyerTalk and a post by the Frequent Miler, Office Depot has removed the Vanilla Reload prepaid cards from their store […]

MaskofZor

Any success at CVS pharmacies in CA?

Mileage Update

Spoke to a bro in Los Angeles. He manages an Office Depot, he confirmed that Vanilla Reloads are done.

loaded

If the IRS or FBI is truly concerned about using the reload cards to launder money, they should impose a requirement that such cards be purchased using credit cards. This would immediately put an end to the laundering concern.

newbie008

Regardless of fraud or money laundering, I see a link between pulling off VR from OD and reduction in spending requirement for chase ink from 10k to 5k in 3 months.

Joshua

@Allen…hmm…next big thing maybe? Or just another card that says “load with cash only”

MeLovesVanilla

All, I broke down from vanillas withdrawal. I went back to CVS after having bought 1K earlier and bought an additional 3K. So I bought a total of 4K from CVS in 30 minutes time. The only irritating thing with CVS is that I can only buy 1K at a time. So the manager did 3 separate transactions. I confirmed with the manager and she said she already ordered more vanillas for me.:)

Lawrence

I went to Walgreens today and they had the Vanilla Reload, but the register came up as cash load only. Do I have to try another store, or is there something the clerk can key in so that it would take the credit card?

MeLovesVanilla

Will, I get 5X from office depot…so for every 1K I make a profit of $30.10 or I am buying 5000 UR points for $19.90. Do not worry about the cashing out fees…I can use Bluebird, Netspend, or MyVanilla to cash out with no or minimal fee $2.50 for netspend only

Will

@MeLovesVanilla, $5 per load to WF. plus $4.95 for a $500 visa gift card. it is not very cost effective.

MeLovesVanilla

All, there is life after OD after all. On my 2 attempt to find vanillas at CVS, I hit the jackpot. There was at least 30 in the rack. And the beauty of it I was able to pay with my Citi. I wanted to buy 4, but they said they have a limit of 1K per transaction. My first 2 went through, the next 2 the register said needs another form of payment. I did not understand…I have 30K available in that card. When I got home, the fraud department called me to verify that I made the purchase of $1007.90 at CVS.I verified so maybe I won’t be stop next time. The CVS clerk and manager were very nice to me. I asked the manager to order some more because I plan to be a regular customer for them with these vanillas. The manager said she will order more. Finally,I asked if I can pay with a visa gift card and she said no. Maybe getting 5X from OD with visa gift cards and then use the cards to buy vanillas at CVS might not work out for me. However, I will try when I go to OD next time and buy a visa gift card. Additionally, I will try to load these visa gift cards to my WF.

Allen

Just stopped by my local OD here in the Bay Area (Ca.); grabbed the last four cards on the rack. When I went to purchase them, the assistant store manager informed me that they recieved an email from corporate to discontinue selling the Vanilla cards; said it had something to due to the ‘security’ of the cards.

He also mentioned that the ‘vendor’ will have an updated version of the card available in a few weeks. We’ll have to wait and see.

nhan

FM,

Please update many of your top deals link. I want to give some biz your way but some of links expired

Valerie

My cvs just got vr but sadly, cash or debit card only. Manager said it’s company policy but I see a bunch of people posting they r getting it with credit cards. I’ll have to drive around to see if any other cvs would accept credit card.

Matt

I am going on a 7 CC churn/ 12k/ 3 mo. spend, mid-week. I am frugal and will not increase spend just to meet bonuses.

Will have no problems in meeting min spend. Of course, the 5x OD/Ink was always blown out-of-proportion by the bloggers and their associated “dumb-wit” followers.
For the bloggers it amounted to $$$…

P.S.: Too lazy to search. But wasn’t there a comment in this very thread to the effect: ” I don’t know why I am buying VR. But you guys know what you are doing. Hence, I follow!” Open your legs wide, babeeeee….:)

Tana

Slomo – I agree wholeheartedly with you on the addictiveness of this perpetual point machine we look for – especially with the new addition of the Bluebird. I actually still found some reloads at OD today and bought 4 of them. I did not want to clean them out since I just got the Ink last week and did not to max out a new credit card.
My point is mainly that us point enthusiasts are getting a little paranoid, and when OD manager says these reloads are being used for fraud and money laundering – it is actual drug dealers, etc that they are talking about. I think we are all blowing out of proportion our importance in the grand scheme of things :). I did check with my CVS – none out yet but they said that they have a big shipment of gift cards. I would still at least like to pay my car note and mortgage. On to the next scheme.

bluto

@harvson3 lol !

Vlad

Just returned from several Tampa area ODs that had V-reloads on Thursday–not only are there no cards, but the slots that previously held them were replaced with other things. (They still stock Vanilla Visas–only the reloads have disappeared.)

Say goodnight, Gracie.

slomo

“Tana says:
November 11, 2012 at 7:30 am
Has anyone actually googled prepaid cards and money laundering. Drug dealers are using these prepaid cards to move money out of the country. Loading them up in America and then ATM the money out across the border. We are not laundering illegal money through Office Depot. I am assuming the IRS cares much more about the actual criminal activity than in the travel hacks. After all – we think that there are lots of people on the blogs and playing the travel game, but I can never get anyone to change their credit card ways – they think it is too much of a hassle. In the whole scheme of things the travel hacks are a very small minority. I am pretty sure the Feds are not going to come get anyone for buying Vanilla reloads for travel points.”

True… we have been innocently – but fervently – ODing on vanilla and ur points, a highly potent and addictive cocktail. Now maybe we have to deal with the withdrawal symptoms. Fortunately this weekend another dealer of my office supply fetish has offered a methadone-like support program. What a mess I am!

slomo

gregorygrady says:
November 11, 2012 at 1:25 am
Well in that case, I bought $13.7M worth of VRs 2 days ago just before this deal died. I was gonna go buy another $50M tomorrow, but I guess those copy cats MMS (and gleff/MP/et al) have now ruined it for me. Thanks for nothing all you copycat bloggers. Now I will have to be content slowly cashing out $13.7M worth via $5k in Bill Pays per month. Crap, I just realized I’m gonna be dead before I am able to finish cashing out my $13.7M, in fact so will my great great great grandkids also likely be dead before I’m able to cash out all my VRs. Thanks a lot you lousy bloggers, not only is the deal dead, but it will now take me 228 years to fully cash out my VRs, and I have a $13.7M CC bill due in about 30 days!!! Yikes!!!

lmfao!
I nominate yours for POST OF THE YEAR AWARD – at least!

harvson3

Oh well. Back to buying visa cards or $500 gift cards at that other store and getting UR points for 0.2 cents each. What awful lives we lead.

frequent churner

Oh well, back to reloadit packs for me, and back to CC churning for FM 🙂
.
Does anyone know if you can transfer a balance from the temporary myvanilla cards to the permanent one?

Missy

I was able to get a few yesterday, and this morning run to the store again. No more. A manager said he didn`t know what was going on, but said they had to discontinue them. I grabbed just regular prepaid card I was satisfied with before. I believe it has something, if not everything, with Bluebird and ability to reload into it, otherwise, OD would had discontinued all prepaid cards, not reloadable only.

glen

Sunday, 10:30 a.m. EST: The manager at my local reliable OD broke the bad news to me. He said, “We got the word yesterday.” Sad weekend. Oh well, on to the next thing…….

Mick

well you guys crashed another party. just can not be discrete.

FM- You CALLED Incomm? Wtf for? Why dont you give them more reason to work with stores to enforce cash / debit only?

I honestly can not understand the mentality of some here.

Tana

Has anyone actually googled prepaid cards and money laundering. Drug dealers are using these prepaid cards to move money out of the country. Loading them up in America and then ATM the money out across the border. We are not laundering illegal money through Office Depot. I am assuming the IRS cares much more about the actual criminal activity than in the travel hacks. After all – we think that there are lots of people on the blogs and playing the travel game, but I can never get anyone to change their credit card ways – they think it is too much of a hassle. In the whole scheme of things the travel hacks are a very small minority. I am pretty sure the Feds are not going to come get anyone for buying Vanilla reloads for travel points :).

Lively

LOL@MarathonMan. You are right about everyone buying into “for your own good after 9/11” line…gets me upset. Sheep.

jim6

@MarathonMan – completely agree – “fraud” is just the excuse to explain why so many VRs were being sold. The supposed “fraud” was that people were buying the cards and cashing out – and then disputing the charges to the CC companies. But it that were indeed the case, why didn’t the “criminals” buy out every gc and prepaid card as well? Not much difference other than ability to load on BB. And what “criminal” would take the risk/time to load on BB anyway? Why not simply spend the gc/prepaids immediately on items you could easily sell? Or sell the gc’s on PlasticJungle?

Marathon man

I always tend to think the “sorry sir but weve seen lots of fraud with these” line is a complete load of bull. There is no fraud. Simply put, corporate compliance officials cant put a solid fix on how and why all these people are buying x so they cant give answers to whomever they report to. And so out of fear and their own drone-like doctrine, they feel better just pulling the plug. Then they give the fraud line to all store managers who tell us. Not many of these types understand or buy into the concept of doing monetary churns for miles and so they think anything like it must be wrong and therefore must be the fraud everyone has been beaten into believing about “since 9/11, sir…” “You know, fraud, money laundering, drugs, terrorism” (no, i dont know you dweeb. Im just trying to use my 796 credit score to get this chase card with a $10k limit to actually use that very limit to buy these from your rack cuz the card tells me ill get 5x points to do so and while im not telling you all this you have no right in my book to even ask! Now, ive shown you my id and paid for the product… Get awfff me!) but ive never said that. I just wanna.
.
What pisses me off about how everyone-every store, every drone, and every non thinker who ever says that to me is the fact i did lose someone in 9/11 on the first plane and so the legacy of it has now been twisted so much as to stop me from getting freakin miles to fly on planes!!!!!
.
I almost should just laugh at the sick irony only i can sometimes see here. EVERYONE I mean everyone buys into that crap!
.
If theres fraud and crooks here, its like 1% of the time and the cops catch them for something else anyway. They are not buying vanillas in od sorry

gregorygrady

Well in that case, I bought $13.7M worth of VRs 2 days ago just before this deal died. I was gonna go buy another $50M tomorrow, but I guess those copy cats MMS (and gleff/MP/et al) have now ruined it for me. Thanks for nothing all you copycat bloggers. Now I will have to be content slowly cashing out $13.7M worth via $5k in Bill Pays per month. Crap, I just realized I’m gonna be dead before I am able to finish cashing out my $13.7M, in fact so will my great great great grandkids also likely be dead before I’m able to cash out all my VRs. Thanks a lot you lousy bloggers, not only is the deal dead, but it will now take me 228 years to fully cash out my VRs, and I have a $13.7M CC bill due in about 30 days!!! Yikes!!!

AC

I think Bill and Jason are same person. Just try to give out an exaggerated number to make people jealous with unrealistic expectation…

gregorygrady

“Over the last few months, I have accumulated over 2300 VR at $500 each.”

Wow, I’m very impressed that you managed to buy over $1.1M worth of VRs over a few months. You must have some serious skills. Almost as much skills (and credit limit) as the poster above you who bought $27.5k in VRs yesterday, and has the credit limit still remaining to go buy another $25k worth of VRs tomorrow morning. 😉

Bill

Nathan,Jason, I have to agree with you. I myself bought 10 VR yesterday. Over the last few months, I have accumulated over 2300 VR at $500 each. I didn’t expect this thing last so long, so I was buying crazy at the beginning.

Jason

I bought 55 Vanilla Reload $500 each yesterday morning. Mgr quickly filled the rack with more Vanilla Reload. I am going back to buy another 50 cards in the morning. The deal is still on, just drive to every OD you can find. Mgr are holding the cards. You need to ask.

Nathan

I just bought $5,000 of vanilla cards today. This seems like BS.

Joe

The moral of this outcome: When there is an opportunity to get money for nothing people are going to exploit the absolute sh** out of it. These small business owners using VR’s to pay there employees really gets under my skin. The supposed backbone of America! Isn’t it ironic that big corporations and massive banks gave us these opportunities while the small business’ are the ones that exploited it?

RK

Found lots of VR cards in Local CVS. Not sure if they accept Credit cards for buying the VR? Any idea? i think it’s still a good deal if you buy VR cards using Chase Freedom which will give me 560 points for each card.that’s about .9 cents per mile.

TravelBloggerBuzz

I am stealing the comment about the fiscal cliff, thank you!

Missy

When I bought mine today, a rep was so excited about me buying that much, she said that they would do “a store goal for today” and that she has never seen anybody to buy that much. She thought I was rich to charge $3K. Again, the store is in mixed communities, so most likely not too many people are in the game. Wondering if they will have them tomorrow.

Phil

The Walgreens in my area still don’t have the VR cards. 🙁

webazoid

FM: Nope, i didn’t make it. some guy on FT posted link.

Nat Arem

I like how people get upset over a classic “Tragedy of the Commons” situation. It’s how things work. This isn’t a small group of people that you can control. Thousands and thousands of people have these credits cards, people are going to take advantage of the great deals while they can because someone else is going to and they might as well get theirs while they can. Personally I didn’t go nuts but that’s just because the ODs around me didn’t have the VRs. Otherwise I really don’t care to show restraint except for the amount that I need to show in order to avoid having Chase ban my account. Otherwise, the game is on.

T3pleShot

I am fine with the vanilla pull. it was getting way too easy for “folks” to earn miles.

MeLovesVanilla

You can use your other rewards-earning credit card to put your work/personal spending, which would give you more points combined…points earned from your other rewards earning credit cards for your work/personal spending and points from the AMEX Target Scheme

MeLovesVanilla

This AMEX Target scheme would require me to load all four cards and withdraw daily to simulate my system or the Bluebird system…which would require thie AMEX Target scheme to be a lot of work and a lot more fees and time invested!!

MeLovesVanilla

Lawrence…so that you can cash out…so that you can simulate spending a lot of money without actually buying something real. If I was going to do this, I would get a total of 4 cards( 2 for me and 2 for my wife) and load a total of $1000 a day to each card with the gift cards and get a total of $1600 a day at the ATM to pay my Inks. However, the AMEX Target scheme would be way slower and harder compared to my system or to the Bluebird system.

Lawrence

I guess with work/personal spending, cashing out isn’t necessary for me.

JoC

To me, the Amex target card is better because of the ATM function, while a regular ppd visa at OD doesnt.

Lawrence

@Grant – that’s my point. Why do I need Target if I can go to OD and buy the Vanilla Visa or Prepaid Amex and get 5x (or even 1x) at OD?

why should I buy a $500 card (prepaid Visa) at OD using the Bold and bother anything with Target. I can just go and spend it…

OceanBreezes

Darn, I just activated by Ink Plus today. Went to 3 ODs – all out; came home to this blog post. I would support a subscription service.

Grant

@JoC, yes you can use it anywhere AMEX is accepted, not only at Target.

Grant

@Lawrence, its just like the Amex prepaid cards before Bluebird came out except you dont need VR cards to load up. It is probably the only way to get 5x point with ink if a CVS or Walgreens wont let you purchase VR with a CC.

JoC

@ frequentmiler

Can I use the Amex ppd target card on stores outside of target?

ElTurk

gregorygrady is right. These ideas can’t exactly be patented. And copyright protection won’t prevent anyone from copying the idea.

MeLovesVanilla

before Bluebird, I had a great system of cashing out between 4k to 4.5 Vanillas via Netspend and MyVanilla very quickly with minimal fees…50 cents for MyVanilla and $2.50 for Netspend…Now it appears that is over 🙁

Lawrence

not sure of the point of the Target AMEX? Just that you can use ATM to pull money out and pay your cc bill? why not just buy the non reloadable cards at OD and use them and toss them?

JoC

copied from Lucky’s comment section

looks like u’ve been spotted in berlin lucky. lol.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r6R5cEEqXpk

gregorygrady

To add to my post above, if you REALLY like FM’s work, you REALLY SHOULD apply for CCs via his links in order to help support him. Although personally I refuse to even do that as any sort of CC referral money to these bloggers just eggs them on to find, publish, and ruin even more deals, exactly like what happened with the Office Depot Vanilla Reload deal today.

gregorygrady

To all the posters who would like a private subscription service, what exactly makes you think the other bloggers wouldn’t simply sign up for it as well, and still go on ahead and ruin all the great ideas that FM comes up with? Even if he vets the subscribers to eliminate the bloggers, they could simply have relatives or friends subscribe. If FM will let you in without knowing you, he will also most likely let bloggers in unknowingly.

Joshua

As of today around 4:30pm still alive in my area. I will check back tomorrow because apparently the notice said they were to be off the shelves by Sunday Nov. 11. Will report back.

Mike

@txnatv, OD office manager Monterey California said the same thing to me about 200$ max credit card load, 500$ max with cash. She told me this is the new policy, nationwide. 200$ reloads with ink is hardly worth it, IMO.

TravelWithMiles

@Webazoid: What an epic video. Had me literally LOL.

As long as they still have the $500 Visa / MC GCs at OD the points train will roll on. The trick will be converting those into Vanilla reloads by finding a local retailer that will accept MC/Visa for them. And your costs will go up by a little more, because you will have fees of $4.95+$3.95 per five hundred instead of just $3.95 and it adds to the hassle factor by visiting 2 merchants instead of 1.

K

FM – can you use the GreenDot loadable cards to load the BlueBird or any of the netspend cards?

Also – any experience with buying GreenDot cards with CC? Would be curious to hear your experience with these.

David

@ Rob and FM,

I totally agree. I have no problem with a subscription service. I love your complex posts on how to really make a deal that no one else thinks of and I really hate what everyone is doing with bluebird right now. The same stuff over and over again. Your blog is the first one I read.

BothofUs2

@webazoid That spoof was hilarious. I haven’t laughed so hard in a long time, thanks for that!

David

Great Video!!! Fits in perfectly with the scene! Love it!

FM, looking to seeing your post on Monday on alternatives!

Rob

FM: It has been an honor to partake in this game with you.

I do believe you need to start a subscription service and filter out other bloggers. It seemed wrong that you put all this effort into it just to see Darius and FTG and others pump it so much to their referral links. I have supported you through your links because I enjoy your information. I would most definitely support you if you had a subscription based service without other bloggers.

Eventually referral income will dry up. You need to think about diversifying your revenue stream.

gregorygrady

@webazoid:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r6R5cEEqXpk
LOL, that is by far the best Hitler spoof video I’ve ever seen, based on the Vanilla Reload fiasco!!! I love it!!!!

Chris D.

@Serion: Thanks for the update on Birmingham. Good to know someone else in this area is in the points game. 🙂

Ron

Visited 6 ODs in Bay Area today – all but one out – and the one that still had a few said cash only.

MileageUpdate

Its not fraud because you can turn around and buy a regular vanilla GC for using your ink card. Its a joke, they are pissed that people are gaining a lot of points.

Serion

The OD in the Birmingham, AL have pulled all of them. One said they have been discontinued. The other just thought they were out of them. (doubtful since they’ve never ran out before)

Something odd is going on though. If it’s fraud, why don’t the stores ask for cash like many of the other places carrying them now?

MeLovesVanilla

The AMX Target 5X alternative is too slow and costly in my opinion compared to the vanillas…what else can compare to the vanillas?

txnatv

Just got back from visit to 2 OD’s near me where I usually buy my reloads. First one had all reloads and amex prepaid cards removed from gift card center but were now in their own Amex rack nearby. However, there was a sign where they used to be saying OD allows purchase of a vanilla reload up to $200 with credit/debit card and up to $500 with cash. This was not there two days ago. I grabbed one reload, went to the counter and asked for $500 to be loaded to see what would happen. Cashier rang it up using my Ink Bold and it went thru no questions, no mgr, no prob. Went to second OD and had similar experience except the reloads were where they usually are in the gift card center but were paper copies instead, and lots of them. I took one to the counter and the cashier took it to a manager who pulled the actual card from a locked cabinet behind the counter, gave it to the cashier and he rang me up for $500 on my cc. I’m not sure when they started this, but it wasn’t that way when I was there two weeks ago. So these OD’s either didn’t get the memo yet, got a different memo, or have their own interpretation of it, I don’t know. I’m not one to ask questions when somthing works, just took my cards and left 😉

Preacher7

Thx, Fm.

FMfan

Since this really appears to be dead… I cannot find one anymore, Maybe you should start talking about alternatives and end all this bean talk!

MeLovesVanilla

I called two more OD stores…both pulled them out…7 stores called…4 stores pulled them and 3 still has them…I am losing hope here 🙁 …confirmed with the store that pulled them is from HQ memo

Jerry

As Don Meridith used to sing ” turn out the lights, the party`s over ” I bought 2 cards at 2 different OD`s on Thursday.

c’est la vie

dvh

Nope, not a word. I bought a Paypal prepaid card too at CVS with CC.

MeLovesVanilla

dvh, did anyone say anything to you when you bought the VR from OD and CVS? Can anyone confirm that some stores will still sell these?

MeLovesVanilla

however, the best funding source for me was from the vanillas… and they may all be gone forever,not just OD 🙁

MeLovesVanilla

dvf, get multiple cards in different people’s name…I have two, one in my name and one in my wife’s name…2K max limit per day for me 🙂

dvh

Does anyone know how to get around the WF to BB $100/day limit?

Peter

Visited 3 ODs in Tampa Bay which these stores usually carry 30 – 40 Bean cards daily ==> ALL Gone 🙁

I asked why and was told it is the direction from HQ and all Bean cards were removed on 11/8/12 :(:(:(:(

Preacher7

Is this all part of the fiscal cliff?

FrequentMiler

Preacher7: Best comment of the night 🙂

MeLovesVanilla

I am going to cry 🙁 if this scheme is dead

rooperT

Thank goodness, now we can actually get back to more interesting stuff.

MeLovesVanilla

You guys are still giving me some hope…and I called around some OD around my area…some pulled them from the shelves and some still carry them…what the heck is going on here? I called 5 stores, 2 pulled them and 3 still carries them…Can I still hope that this scheme is not dead?

Larry Ordway

Just checked my local OD, all of the rack.

dvh

Still plenty here. Just bought 2 VR at OD and 2 VR at CVS.

MeLovesVanilla

I am so sad all to hear this devastating news 🙁 I have been making a killing on all this vanillas. I just hope that OD is coming out with a newer and better vanilla…I JUST LOVE THESE VANILLAS TOO MUCH to have to lose them forever.

webazoid

Watch the turmoil that’s going on: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r6R5cEEqXpk

FrequentMiler

webazoid: I didn’t watch that until now. Hilarious! Did you make that video? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r6R5cEEqXpk

Victor

Matt. It is over. There are still cards there I could have purchased but if I did not buy they would be pulled from shelf. This is not the normal purchase but I figure what is there to lose tonight. The manager me ruined it to me when I walked in as I got to know him. I am the one who asked the store to order them last month. They ordered 100 for me.

yyyccclll

No matter what happen, just want to say thank you, FM.

Missy

Ellen, I know, it doesn`t have sense, but you guys know what you are doing, and besides of these reload cards, I get my biz class flights on points, so I decided to get them first and figure out on how to use them later.

Matt

Victor: picking up 20 for the month?? It is exactly people like YOU who destroy deals for the rest of us. No sense about sustainability!! How many white rhinos are there?? I bet you wouldn’t care, you’d just be wondering why there aren’t after you killed a 1000.

JoC

Yes, I hear the word “discontinue” from a couple of the OD stores today.

Missy

Victor, thank you. I was buying Vanilla Visa Prepaid (with $4.95 fee) before, but the back of the card says “non reloadable”. I have prepaid AmEx cards, not sure if those are suitable for the reload. And which card is free to use? Bluebird?

cindy

i tried 10 OD in bay area last weekend. none of them have vanilla. I even tried 50 miles away. It seem that there are too many point collectors in bay area. It is eventually dead.

Lucy

It is time you start a paid subscription blog or site, whatever new ideas you come up with are only going to make the infamous D and other incompetent bloggers more and more famous using your ideas? If you decide to go this route, limit the number of subscribers and screen all before approving membership, this way you keep all the copy cats bloggers out and your small group can benefit from deals that last for a while,
ill be your first paid subscriber

Ellen

Missy , sorry if i seen rude, how in the world you run and buy these cards without even knowing what they are for?

DrSifu

Still available in San Diego as of 2 minutes ago.

victor

missy you need a loadedble card to load them onto. derve, amex prepaid, vanilla, or bluebird. sign up for one. bluebird is easiest to use but 7-10 days out from order. also you mentioned scratched off area, it was still covered when you bought? If not someone else can use your funds.

victor

just went to my local store and he showed me the message. the are to pull them tomorrow. had about 50, i picked up 20 to max out for the month. they are to replace with some type of amex in the message but no other details and does not know when. cards and ads to be pulled tomorrow.

Missy

So I saw the news on this board and jumped out of my bed to run to my local OD! They still sell Vanilla Reload. I went crazy and bought a few. My store is in a bad neighborhood, and I guess there are not too many mile collectors out here. I, however, have no idea what to do with them and how to use them. Do I need to buy just a regular card and load the numbers from under scratched area? Or can please somebody explain in a simple way? Thanks!

Dan

The IRS excuse makes no sense to me. It is not OD’s problem if employers tried using reload cards to pay their employees unless OD got strong armed by the IRS directly which I find hard to believe. Furthermore, it would be incredibly dumb for someone to try and use reload cards to avoid employment taxes unless they used unreported cash in which case why not just use the unreported cash to pay the employees?

In any event, I am not surprised. I have been personally told and read the same thing from others that there was a lot of CC fraud associated with these reload cards.

Is this a failing of OD CC fraud prevention? I hope so otherwise this story will end up repeating itself with other retailers.

glen

Bought 10K in reloads from 2 different stores on Friday, but did not try today (Saturday). Will definitely go looking on Sunday!

Matt

It was just a matter of time. Too much hype, too much publicity, etc. And especially w/ 5x thru Ink/OD…that’s not sustainable.

For me and my needs…hope to find Vanilla Reloads at 1x payable by CC. That’s all I need, and I’ll be set for years of churning.

Grant Thomas

@K, its down in Irvine, on Jamboree, but i went in at 9:01am this morning right after they opened, so they might have had time to read their memos. Good timing on my part 🙂

K

Grant – where in SoCal did you go? Anywhere in LA by any chance? Would be interested to visit the store you went to. Do you mind sharing the address?

David

@RkToledo and Mark,

I only hid a couple but regular shelf still had plenty as of last week of the one location I frequent. If you are in Dallas, then you should know its not hard to find. I have seen them stacked in 4 OD location out of 6 that I have attempted to look for. They are plentiful in Dallas. If you cant find them, you have not looked hard enough or you just have bad luck. Of the 4 location with VR, they total about about 100K worth. So plenty for everyone. Well, at least until now with the national block.

Grant Thomas

I went to my local OD in SoCal this morning and was able to buy a $500 Amex prepaid and a $450 VR, cashier was very friendly and rang it up, no problem 🙂

JP2

the OD closest to me in the Metro ATL area pulled them due to the memo. Sounds like it might be nationwide.

steven

@FM, I use SPG card to fund $500 target americanexpress, can I get points from this transaction?

WishyAnand

Moral of the story:

Get the Ink card and a few other most useful 5x rewards ones now instead of waiting to apply the next time a deal like this comes around!

3 weeks since applying for Ink and still waiting 🙁

Feel even worse for those who waited to apply for the 5k spend Ink offer since they won’t even get 25k after first purchase.

Dave

FM, so the temporary card becomes a useless piece of plastic?

FrequentMiler

Dave: I’m not sure about that. You might be able to spend from the temporary card too (against the same balance). I’m just not totally sure. I think I cut up my temporary card once the permanent card came.

RkToledo

@david from a fellow Dallas resident, you are a scumbag. Hiding vanilla, buying 3k at a time. It’s people like you that this deal has been terminated. a-hole.

FrequentMiler

Please, everyone, keep the conversation civil. I don’t usually censor comments, but I will do so if this gets out of hand.

ashley

Thanks Hugo keep me posted

Dave

FM, I have a question regarding Target AMEX. I have $500 on the temp card, and I just received my permanent card. How can I tranfer the funds from the temp card to the permanent one? Just take it to Target?

FrequentMiler

Dave: The money from the temp Amex should appear automatically on the permanent one. Have you activated the permanent card yet? If so, just log into your account and you should see the money there

Mark

@David – thanks for hiding all the reloads in Dallas a-hole.

bald guy

Just purchased three vr cards that management missed on a secondary end cap. Main stash was completely empty. New cashier asked for help while another employee guided him. They said that weren’t supposed to sell them anymore, but that still rang up just fine. Last week there were about 200 on the rack. The more senior employee said they pulled them because too many people were buying them for the points. Didn’t say anything about fraud and didn’t ask for my ID. Was nice while it lasted.

WakeUp

@FM – Are you completely brain dead or just plain stupid?

David

big disappointment, might have to resort to buying their regular amex GCs

David

Just went to Local OD that i have a stash hidden 10 min ago in Dallas(4 locations within 5 minutes with stacks). But the signs are off(only regular amex gC).

Tried to buy 3K, needed mgmt override, mgmer who sold me 3K last week said they had to pull all and asked me where I got them. He said he got a memo this morning for ALL OD that they wont sell VR anymore. No reason given.

You can potentially still buy them, if you have hidden stash as they still go through in system, just that mgers know not to approve/override and will take them away.

colleen

OD Naples still selling via cc. Just ran there when I read the post! Mgr did ask for ID, though.

Tom

Bought 2 around 11 am this morning in stl

Hugo

Broward….ones in FLL and Pompano. Even Walgreens off Oakland Park and I95 accepts cc. My friend is gonna go now to see if its true

Milezjunkie

As long as OD still sell Visa and Amex $500 cards that I can use with AP I’m good. Keep in mind, CVS sells VR cards so if you buy those with a $500 Visa gift card it’s only $3.95 to liquidate. Before BB it cost $2-$4 to use the ATM to liquidate a $500 VR. Now loading the VR onto BB it’s free so you only have the $3.95 expense to cash out, and $1 more for the original card since gift cards are $4.95. Still a great deal!

ashley

Hugo,which OD in SoFla they still have the cards

FrequentMiler

Hugo: they seem to mostly have been pulled this morning. Call and ask if they have them

Hugo

I dont think this is true. I live in SoFla and all my OD have vanilla cards and they all take cc. I bought 4 yesterday without any issues

Faye

My OD in Niles, IL went one step further today: they pulled all the MC/Visa giftcards! And local Walgreens said ‘cash only’ for Reloads. No credit, no debit.

sanjay

Yes the manager in Chicago told me the same thing. It is pulled out of all Office Depot stores nationwide. He said too many people come there with chase cards and there are too many frauds.

K

I just called my local OD store and they said they have discontinued selling the Vanilla card and those are discontinued for good 🙁

…I was just due to restock on Vanilla cards, really sad news! 🙁 Looking forward to your post for other options. Using a Hilton Card to buy those is not nearly as good… esp for us who prefer the INk Bold spend. Thank you for breaking the news!

Anon

Wow, thank you for the heads up. Was waiting for my next churn to apply for Ink, probably not worth it anymore.

LG

Fantastic while it lasted. Here’s hoping we’ll see fewer posts with 10+ credit card affiliate links on the other blogs. In the end, it was too easy and too lucrative to last long.

TravelGuide37

Oh well…on to the next one and the cat and mouse game continues.

Ollie

🙁