American Express has been sending emails to let us know that the “party is over”. Effective immediately, Amex has restricted the loading capability of the accounts.
We are asked to withdraw the existing funds and then close the account online.
Here is the official email from American Express.
Here is the section 15 from the Terms & Conditions. It is interesting they even use the word “Manufacture”
d. Suspension of Use; Cancellation; Closure.
We, in our sole discretion, may limit your use of, suspend or terminate your privileges with respect to your Account (including your Reserve), Sub-Account, Card and/or Sub-Account Card with or without cause or notice, other than any notice required by Applicable Law, including in the event we believe there has been a breach in security or there has been unauthorized activity involving your Account or you have engaged in activity that is fraudulent or inappropriate (e.g., manufacture activity that is inconsistent with the intended use of the Account) or violates the terms of this User Agreement. We will only close your Account if there are no funds remaining in your Account (including your Reserve) or Sub-Account, unless you specifically instruct us to close your Account or Sub-Account with funds remaining, in which case, any remaining funds will be escheated to the applicable state in accordance with Applicable Law. Closure of your Account will prohibit your access to the Service.
You can check this flyertalk thread for more information. It is obvious that, we are using these products in a way not intended by Amex.
We are asked to use the funds in the account and close the account.
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If you are stuck with a lot of gift cards, here are some of the options available to liquidate these cards.
- Use them for regular spend
- Many apartment communities/Land lords accept credit cards for rent payments by charging a fee
- Buy Money orders – Many groceries stores allow Money Order purchases with Debit cards – It is risky if you deposit too many money orders in your bank account
Amex is closing down the Bluebird/Serve accounts for many folks. This seems to be across the board and is most likely caused due to loading of gift cards and cashing the money out quickly.
There are very limited options available now to spend quickly and cheaply. It may be a good idea to limit the manufactured spend for sign up bonuses only.
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Editorial Note: Opinions, analysis and any calculations shown are authors alone. Information in this post is not reviewed, approved and endorsed by any airlines, frequent flyer programs or financial institution