Review: Trying Out Bluebird by American Express and Walmart
The one month stretch between Thanksgiving and Christmas is the perfect time to sink into major debt. In just 30 short days you can slide, headfirst down a very slippery slope faster than you can say, “rudolf the red nosed reindeer.”
Since that is the case, I’m excited to do a review of Bluebird here on BlackandMarriedWithKids.com. Bluebird is a new checking and debit alternative from Walmart and American Express.
According to the companies:
Bluebird merges the best of today’s capabilities found in the payments, technology, and financial services space and packages it into something that provides consumers with simple and convenient access to their funds so they can manage and streamline their money management.
Features for registered members include:
- Deposit Money: Once Members register and receive their personalized Bluebird card, funds can be loaded online through a bank account such as a savings or checking account, debit cards, direct deposit, remote check capture via the mobile app and cash loading at Walmart registers.
- Make Purchases: Bluebird can be used for purchases at millions of locations where American Express ® Cards are accepted, both in the U.S. and internationally.
- Pay Bills: Members can pay bills to any person or business in the U.S., either online or with the Bluebird mobile app.
- Create Subaccounts: Bluebird offers Members the ability to easily create, manage and specify subaccounts for their friends, family members or colleagues. Members can set up to four subaccounts. Subaccounts are linked to the master Bluebird account and allow the user to set spending limits, set up text/email alerts, and enable/disable key features like ATM access.
- Transact through the Bluebird Mobile App: The Bluebird mobile app has no fee and is available on any iPhone® and AndroidTM Phone. Once installed, Bluebird Members can send and receive money, view transactions, add money, and manage subaccounts.
- Get Cash Access: Bluebird members can use their Bluebird Card for ATM withdrawals anywhere around the world that accepts American Express® Cards. Bluebird Members enrolled in direct deposit can get fee-free and surcharge-free cash access through the MoneyPass’ network of 22,000 ATMs nationwide. Withdrawals at an out-of-network ATM will have a $2 fee and additional fees may be assessed by the ATM owner or operator. For Bluebird Members not enrolled in direct deposit, each ATM withdrawal at any MoneyPass ATM nationwide will have a $2 fee. Note: The $2 fee is waived until November 4, 2012.
- Enjoy Access To Valuable Benefits: Members have access to benefits (subject to terms and conditions), including:
- Purchase Protection1 which can provide coverage against accidental damage or theft of eligible items for 90 days from date of purchase, up to $1,000 per occurrence, up to $50,000 per Cardmember account per calendar year.
- Roadside Assistance2 which may arrange for the following services: towing, winching, jump starts, flat tire change when spare is available, lockout service when key is in vehicle and delivery of up to 2 gallons of fuel.
- Global Assist® Services3 provide pre-trip planning assistance as well as emergency assistance when the Cardmember is traveling more than 100 miles from home.
- Exceptional 24-7 customer service Members have come to expect from American Express.
- Initiate Bluebird to Bluebird Transfers: Immediate person-to-person money transfers to other Bluebird Members can be conducted online or via the Bluebird mobile app.
- Set up Money Management Tools: Online management tools provide controls and full transparency for how Bluebird is used. Either online or via the mobile app, Members can:
- View real-time transaction history and monitor spending.
- Receive email or text alerts
- Disable/enable ATM access (master accounts only)
- Inquire about their balance 24 hours a day/7 days a week.
- Schedule reloading of funds automatically.
Stay tuned over the next month as I provide several updates from receiving the card, to using it during my everyday adventures.
Will Bluebird really assist with better money management and control? Should you pick one up from the more than 4,000 participating Walmart stores? We’ll find out.
Disclaimer: Compensation was provided for the time and effort that will go into this review but will not influence my findings.