Perhaps the most exciting thing we’ve seen in manufactured spending since Vanilla Reloads, the American Express Prepaid REDcard (aka Redbird) is very in-demand right now. Unfortunately, not everyone has access to them at the moment. Until recently, they weren’t even available in California and I had to get mine in Michigan. I’ve heard since that they’ve been appearing at Bay Area stores, though several readers have sent me frustrated emails, saying they’ve been unable to locate one. If you’re one of these people, here are a few ways you can get your hands on a Target Redbird card:
1. NoonRadar. You’ve probably seen comments from NoonRadar on this blog. Most of the time he’s being helpful to other readers, other times he’s simply hawking his Redbird business. 😉 It’s a good thing he does because several of my readers have expressed their appreciation for it, since it was the only way they knew to get their very own Redbird card. While I haven’t personally purchased any Redbirds from NoonRadar, dozens of readers have vouched for him, both in the comment section of various posts and via email, so I feel confident in recommending him as a source for Redbirds.
2. Ebay. There are tons of Redbirds for sale on ebay, priced at $15 – $30. These cards come preloaded with $1, so you are paying a premium, but this is normal and on par with what other Redbird resellers are charging. Considering you’ll earn 5,000 free miles every month from Redbird in addition to 1.5% cash back if you chose to go the Amex gift card route, it’s worth the fee. Ebay is also a reliable marketplace, since purchases are handled through Paypal and you can resolve any disputes through their Resolution Center.
3. Ask a friend. If you know anyone in a state where Redbird cards are sold, simply ask them to pick one up for you. They have to buy a temporary card (it doesn’t matter whose name it’s in), send you the card number and then you register it online using your personal information. The card will arrive in the mail within 1-2 weeks, ready to be used.
4. Craigslist. I’m putting this last because as we all know Craigslist can be shady. I’ve heard of way too many people getting scammed on Craigslist (two people I know were robbed by criminals posing as buyers). If you’re able to find reasonably priced Redbirds on your area’s Craigslist page, then I highly recommend you meet the seller inside a local Starbucks or someplace else with lots of people around. Not outside of Starbucks or at the mall parking lot – inside, no matter what. If they refuse to abide by this request, they’re trying to avoid surveillance cameras and you’re better off Redbird hunting elsewhere. I personally wouldn’t go the Craigslist route, but am including it anyway for the sake of completeness.
Just because you live in an area where Redbirds are not sold, that does not mean you have to miss out on a great manufactured spending tool. Even if Redbirds are sold in your area but they’re temporarily out of stock, being able to purchase one online for a mark-up can make more sense than calling/driving around looking for stores that do carry them.
How did you obtain your Redbird card?
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