Six Different Flavors of Serve and How to Remain Fee-Free

Main Serve Homepage

Link to four versions of Serve

Link to Green Serve terms

Link to Old Blue Serve terms

Link to New Blue Serve terms

Link to Serve Cashback terms – Silver Serve

Flavor One: Old BlueServe

This is the old version of Serve, which many of us have.

  • Offers fee-free reload at Walmart, Family Dollar, Rite Aid, and Dollar General, among other locations.
  • Comes with a $1 monthly fee.
  • Monthly fee is waived if you loaded $500 within the past month, including online credit/debit loads or in-store cash reloads.
  • Can be loaded with an Amex credit card up to $1000 per month.

Key Factors: These details are not changing for existing members. All changes mentioned below are for new signups only. No monthly fee for NY, TX, VT.

Flavor Two: GreenServe

Serve is rebranding and creating a new Green card product.

  • Offers fee-free reload at Walmart, Family Dollar, Rite Aid, and Dollar General, among other locations.
  • Comes with a $4.95 monthly fee
  • Can be loaded with an Amex credit card up to $1000 per month.

Key Factors: This card maintains the fee-free reloads, but adds a $4.95 monthly fee. No fee for NY, TX, VT.

Flavor Three: New BlueServe

This is the new version of the Blue Serve card.

  • Costs up to $3.95 to reload at Walmart, Family Dollar, Rite Aid, and Dollar General, among other locations. [Walmart reloads were initially not working, but they are now working fine. There is, however, a $3.74 fee. (chasingthepoints)]
  • Comes with a $1 monthly fee
  • Monthly fee is waived only with direct deposit of $500. Other load methods will not waive this fee.
  • Can be loaded with an Amex credit card up to $1000 per month.

(Note: With previous promos offered by Serve, any ACH transfer worked to satisfy the direct deposit requirement. We expect that the same to be the case with regards to this.)

Key Factors: This card maintains the $1 monthly fee, but makes it harder to get waived. (No fee for NY, TX, VT.) It also adds a fee for in-store reloads.

Flavor Four: SoftServe

Some of us still have the enhanced Serve-with-Softcard option.

  • Offers fee-free reload at Walmart, Family Dollar, Rite Aid, and Dollar General, among other locations.
  • Comes with no monthly fee at all. Starting January 6, 2016, this card will have a $4.95 monthly fee; waived with direct deposit.
  • Can be loaded with a credit card up to $1500 per month. Visa, Mastercard, Amex, or Discover.
  • Can be loaded with a debit card up to $1500 per month.

Key Factors: There is a monthly fee of $4.95 (no fee for residents of NY, TX, and VT), but it should hopefully be easy to get it waived by having a small amount of money ACH transferred to the Serve account. It has the added velocity limit of $1,500 in credit card and debit card load which is $500 more than the others. And it can be loaded with any credit card, not just Amex cards.

SoftServe is no longer available for signup, those who have it can continue using it.

Flavor Five: SilverServe

A new option is beginning to roll out which offers 1% cashback on all purchases using your Serve card. Since the card is a silver color, we’re calling it SilverServe.

  • Costs up to $3.95 to reload at Walmart, Family Dollar, Rite Aid, and Dollar General, among other locations.
  • Comes with a $5.95 monthly fee. No fee in NY, TX, VT.
  • Can be loaded with an Amex credit card up to $1000 per month.

Key Factors: This card seems to have the worst of all worlds; there’s a non-waivable monthly fee of $5.95, and it still has a fee for loading the card at Walmart and other stores. Serve is pushing the benefit of getting 1% cashback on all purchases as a strong selling point of the card, but if we assume you have a credit card which earns more than that on all purchases, this isn’t much of a benefit.

Flavor Six: One VIP Serve

The final option is an obscure card which has been around for a while called the One VIP card. This card has the exact details as the regular Serve card, including the ability to be loaded online with an Amex credit card. The card also offers some entertainment benefits that most of us probably won’t be interested in.

  • Offers fee-free reload at Walmart, Family Dollar, Rite Aid, and Dollar General, among other locations.
  • Comes with a $1 monthly fee.
  • Monthly fee is waived if you loaded $500 within the past month, including online credit/debit loads or in-store cash reloads.
  • Can be loaded with an Amex credit card up to $1000 per month.

Key Factors: This card has all the details of the Old Blue Serve mentioned above, including fee-free reloads, the low $1 monthly fee, and the ability to waive the monthly fee with any $500 load to the card. The One VIP site makes it sound like the $1 monthly fee is only waived with $500 in direct deposit, not with any other add-money method; elsewhere there are indications on the Amex site that the fee can be waived with any $500 of add-money transactions. We’ve confirmed that in practice any $500 load has been working to waive the monthly fee. (No fee for NY, TX, VT.)

Which card to get?

For someone who already has a Serve card, the best strategy is to just hold onto it since it has the $1 waivable monthly fee and it doesn’t have any reload fees. Certainly someone with SoftServe is lucky to be able to continue loading $1500 per month from any credit card.

For new cards, here’s the best option…

  • OneVIP Serve – For many people, this will be the best option. It does have a $1 monthly fee, but the fee is waivable with $500 loaded per month.
  • Bluebird – If you plan on loading only at Walmart and you don’t plan on doing online credit card loads (for example, if you are managing a card in someone else’s name and you don’t have any credit cards in their name), choose Bluebird instead of Serve. This card has no monthly fee and has free reloads at Walmart.
  • GreenServe – If you live in NY, TX, or VT, get GreenServe or OneVIP Serve. People in these states don’t have a monthly fee and would do better taking Serve over Bluebird for the added ability to load at Family Dollar and to do online credit card loads.

(Updated 12/09/15)

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Rahul
Rahul

I am In Ohio, which serve should i get to avoid monthly fee and get free loads at WM?

Adam
Adam

Did you read the post at all?

Leslie
Leslie

I just for my Serve green card. Can add funds online by linking debit or credit card issued by AMEX Right? Can i load my prepaid AMEX GIFT Card to serve or not? If I attempt will they lock or ban my account?

Rhea
Rhea

This is an old post, but i have BB and want to apply for Serve……can one have both BB and Serve at same time? Or this is an invitation for shutdown if one holds both BB and Serve?

Stanley
Stanley

It seems the best available option for using serve to do credit card loading is applying for a New Blue Serve (since OneVip didn’t accept application anymore). But for the monthly fee, will CC loading waive the New Blue serve’s monthly fee?

Priya
Priya

I have Bluebird. Can i apply and get Serve card too, and have both Bluebird and Serve at same time?

LAG
LAG

Might want to update the post:

Just received an email today… Amex Serve One VIP no longer accepting applications eff. 1-1-2018!

“but as a current ONE VIP Cardholder, we want to let you know that there will be no impact to your Serve Account”

Get them now while you can… I’ve heard people suggest applying and keeping some unactivated.

I wonder if you can still activate post-1/1/18…

TanT
TanT

This post needs an update on the fee. The Agreement for one vip and Blue Serve states that the fee is waived with **any direct deposit amount**. I’ve been keeping it fee-free since I opened it (Nov 2016) by ACH $1 every month to my One vip card. Link to the term: https://www.americanexpress.com/serve/legal/serve/#schedule_services

Stanley
Stanley

Will CC loading also waive the fee for Blue Serve?

JT27MP
JT27MP

Is there a “calendar” of when Serve has there wave of shutdowns.

William Charles

Not really, just search this site for serve shut downs or similar.

Rhea
Rhea

anyone having any issues loading VGC from GCM to serve at WM? Yesterday i tried twice but did not load with cashier at WM counter…………

Mimi
Mimi

In a few times I had issues (not just with GCM/GCC VGCs), I realize it’s *cashier error but I didn’t want to tell them they’re doing it wrong; I leave and go to a different cashier and/or just try another day.

*most often, if I’m doing split transaction and they enter wrong amount, a small piece of paper comes out of register with error 51. If I see the cashier is friendly, I ask nicely if they input the correct amount since I know balance on my DC; if cashier refuses to cooperate, I just say thank you and leave. When I go to another cashier who knows how to do it, it always works.

Rhea
Rhea

Thanks for the detailed reassuring reply…………will try it again…….

Heather
Heather

I tried to apply for ONE VIP SERVE card but system says it cannot approve me.

Is this card not available anymore?

If available still, HOW DO I GET IT?

If not, what is next best bet to get a card that does not charge MF and free debit card loads at WM?

Please help