Bluebird By American Express Review 2024

Bluebird By American Express logo

Bluebird By American Express

9.0 rating

Expert Take

With Bluebird by American Express, there’s plenty to like. You’ll rarely need to worry about fees, and the card mirrors most major checking accounts' features. Plus, you’ll get access to tempting Amex offers without paying credit card fees.


  • No fees on most everyday transactions
  • Free cash reloads
  • Get paid early with direct deposit
  • Backed by Amex


  • Poor mobile app ratings
  • No savings account

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As the banking world moves increasingly online, there’s no shortage of alternatives to traditional checking accounts.

Mobile apps, cash management accounts, and prepaid debit cards are more common than ever, giving you many options to store and spend your money.

Bluebird by American Express is one of these convenient banking options.

In my Bluebird by American Express review, we’ll evaluate the reloadable prepaid card that lets you shop, pay bills, and deposit cash — without a checking account.

What is Bluebird by American Express?

Bluebird is a fintech company owned by InComm, a financial institution based in Atlanta. In addition to its prepaid debit card, Bluebird also offers an FDIC-insured bank account through its partnership with MetaBank.

In this Bluebird by American Express review, I’ll focus on the Bluebird by American Express prepaid debit account to see how it compares to other prepaid debit cards.

Bluebird by American Express Features

Bluebird Mobile App

With the Bluebird mobile banking app, you can monitor your balance, make mobile check deposits, and send and receive money from others with Bluebird accounts.

Bluebird’s mobile app has a 4.5 (out of 5) star rating in the App Store and a 4.7 (out 0f 5) star rating in the Google Play store.

Free Cash Deposits at Family Dollar

Many online bank accounts offer cash deposits as an option, but nearly all charge a significant fee. With Bluebird, you can make free cash reloads at any Family Dollar location.

Just head to the register to add funds. You can add up to $2,500 each day. Your deposit is immediately reflected in your balance, and there’s no fee.

If you don’t have a Family Dollar nearby, you can deposit cash with these popular retailers:

  • CVS
  • Walgreens
  • Walmart
  • Duane Reade
  • Dollar General
  • Participating 7-Eleven locations

However, there’s a fee of up to $3.95 for each deposit transaction at those locations.

Online Bill Pay

Whether it’s your car insurance, monthly rent, or utility bills, you can use your Bluebird card to pay online. Bill pay is free and easy to schedule in your account’s “Money Out” section.

Bluebird stores the merchant information after you pay a bill for the first time, so you don’t have to re-enter the same information.

Bluebird also offers a Bill Pay Guarantee. If you enter the payment at least six days before the bill’s due date, Bluebird will cover any late fees if the funds get held up, up to $50.

Free ATM Access

One of the most exciting features noted in Bluebird by American Express reviews is that you can withdraw cash even though it’s not a checking account.

Bluebird is part of the MoneyPass network, so customers have fee-free ATM access at over 37,000 ATMs nationwide.

Out-of-network ATM withdrawals have a $2.50 fee plus whatever the ATM charges. To find a free ATM near you, check out the MoneyPass ATM locator.

Early Direct Deposit

Most banks hold direct deposits until the funds officially clear. Following the trend of many other online banks, Bluebird cuts down on this lag time.

When you set up direct deposit with Bluebird, you can get access to your paycheck a few days early.

Exactly when you get paid depends on when your employer posts the funds, but Bluebird will issue them to your card as soon as they appear.

BlueBird2Walmart Cash Pickups

With BlueBird2Walmart Cash Pickups powered by Ria, you can easily transfer money to other Bluebird account holders.

Here’s How it Works:

  • To execute a transfer, log into your account and head to the Money Out tab.
  • Choose your recipient, the amount, and their pickup location. Note the transaction’s reference number because they’ll need it to collect the funds.
  • The recipient can pick up the funds at the selected Walmart location with an ID and the reference number.

The funds only take a few minutes to be available, and the service is accessible during normal Walmart store hours. Cash pickups are available in all 50 states and Puerto Rico.

Unfortunately, each transfer incurs a small fee, which increases the more cash you send. If you can send funds for free through another free payment app — like Zelle, Venmo, or PayPal — I recommend taking that route.

However, the main difference is that with Bluebird, the recipient gets cold, hard cash, instead of electronic funds.

Amex Offers

Since Amex issues the Bluebird prepaid card, users can access the credit card issuer’s well-known range of offers. Just like with an American Express card, Bluebird includes various discounts and exclusive offers.

Most deals are on shopping and dining and will regularly rotate and update monthly. You might even get early access to concerts and other fun events.

Roadside Assistance

Amex is well-regarded for taking care of its customers. With Bluebird, you get access to its 24-hour Roadside Assistance dispatch line.

Whenever you need a tow truck or a locksmith, you can call to coordinate emergency help. This is a free service for cardholders; however, you must pay for any goods or services you receive.


Overall, the Bluebird prepaid debit card fee schedule is pretty sparse. However, there are a few fees to be aware of:

  • Bluebird2Walmart Transfer Fee Powered by Ria®: Up to $16 per transfer
  • Out of Network ATM fee: $2.50 per transaction
  • Cash Pickup Powered by Ria® Fee: Up to $9 per pickup
  • Card Replacement Fee (expedited shipping): $20
  • Cash Reload Fee (non-Family Dollar): up to $3.95 per reload

There are no monthly fees, annual fees, or minimum balance requirements. You also won’t have to worry about overdraft fees since your card will decline if you don’t have enough to cover a transaction. Card replacement is free if you opt for standard shipping.

If you use your card abroad, you won’t pay any foreign transaction fees. This feature sets it apart from most debit and entry-level credit cards.

Getting Started

To sign up for a Bluebird card, visit

To set up a new account, you must be at least 18 or 19 if you live in Nebraska or Alabama. You also need a valid email address and a Social Security Number.

This information is used to verify your identity, so don’t worry about a hard credit check affecting your credit score. Once you open your account, you’ll receive your Bluebird card in the mail within a few business days and a virtual card via email for immediate online use.

You can load funds through cash or mobile deposits and start using them immediately.


Bluebird doesn’t come with a sign-up bonus or any promotions, but you can still cash in by registering for Amex offers.

To get access to the offers, you must verify your email and activate your card. You can then browse the offers online or in the app and add them to your card to redeem them later. Most offers come with an expiration date, so take advantage of them when you can.

Once you’ve added an offer, your card will automatically reflect it in your statement balance, so there’s no need to keep track of receipts.


When it comes to security, Bluebird again reaps the benefits of its association with American Express. Massive financial institutions almost always provide the most secure platforms, and this one is no exception.

When you use your Bluebird card, all your transactions are covered by Amex Fraud Protection. If you lose your card or it’s stolen, you can place a temporary 7-day freeze or request a new one for free.

Plus, even though it isn’t a true checking account, funds on your card are still protected by FDIC insurance. When you reload your card, the funds go into a custodial account with a member-FDIC bank, so all of your money is protected up to $250,000.

Customer Support

If you need help with your account, has an extensive FAQ section.

You can reach out any time if you need to speak to someone. The US phone number is 1-877-486-5990, and is available 24/7.

Unfortunately, one of the downsides I’ve found in this Bluebird by American Express review is that current Bluebird customers have experienced poor customer service.

The reviews are somewhat limited, but Bluebird currently holds a rating of just 1.1 stars (out of 5) on Trustpilot.

Pros & Cons


  • No fees on most everyday transactions
  • Free cash reloads
  • Backed by Amex
  • Get paid early with a direct deposit


  • Poor mobile app ratings
  • No savings account
  • High fees on money transfers

Alternatives to Bluebird

Bluebird by American Express is not the only prepaid debit card available, here are some other alternatives to consider:

Frequently Asked Questions

Is American Express Bluebird good?

It depends on your situation. Bluebird has some excellent features — most notably its low-cost and user-friendliness. However, Bluebird isn’t for everyone. You probably don’t need it if you’re happy with your checking or online bank account.

How much money can you put on a Bluebird Prepaid Card?

You can add $20 – $2,500 daily on the Bluebird prepaid card.

What bank is Bluebird by American Express?

American Express National Bank currently backs Bluebird prepaid accounts. All funds you add are placed in a custodial account by the bank, which has FDIC insurance coverage.

Does Bluebird build credit?

No, Bluebird is a prepaid debit account, not a credit card. Therefore, you won’t have the chance to build your credit score while using it for everyday transactions. However, if you use your Bluebird card for bill pay, services like LevelCredit will report recurring payments to the credit bureaus in exchange for a monthly fee.

What is the limit on a Bluebird card?

The Bluebird prepaid card has several limits, including:

Here’s the full breakdown:

  • Total balance limit across all Bluebird accounts: $100,000
  • Direct deposit limit: $100,000 per year
  • Cash deposit limit: $2,500 per day ($1,999 at Walmart), $5,000 per month
  • Retail or online purchase limit: $15,000 per month
  • ATM withdrawal limit: $750 per day
  • Send Money limit: $2,500 per day
  • Receive Money limit: $10,000 per month

Is Bluebird Right For You?

One thing’s clear — there’s no single way to handle everyday expenses anymore. Checking accounts are still a must-have, but with so many options, you can pick and choose the best banking option for your lifestyle.

With Bluebird, there’s plenty to like. You’ll rarely need to worry about fees, and the card mirrors most major checking accounts’ features. Plus, you’ll get access to tempting Amex offers without paying credit card fees.

Overall, this Bluebird by American Express review found that Bluebird makes the most sense for people easing into the banking world or handling a lot of cash.

On the flip side, there are some limitations and fees to watch out for, and there’s no opportunity to grow your money with interest.

Weigh the pros and cons, and consider what you need from a debit account. From there, you should be able to find the best card for you. And remember, your bank should be working for you and not the other way around.

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