Skip to content
Save your money, so that your money can save you.
Save your money, so that your money can save you.

American Express Serve® Prepaid Card

amex serve prepaid card

American Express Serve®

American Express Serve® prepaid debit card only charges $1 per month. Reload fee at the register is $3.95 but it varies from retailers. American Express Serve does not have it’s own reload pack, you must bring your prepaid debit card to the register to load money onto it. American Express Serve®  also has a very cool feature that allows you to move money from your available balance to your reserve account. Not only is this a great mechanism to stash away money and save but it also prevents unauthorized charges because companies can only charge whats in your balance. Here are a few other beneficial information regarding American Express Serve® prepaid card:

  • No Hidden Fees
  • No Credit Check
  • No Minimum Balance
  • Can register online
  • Free direct deposit
  • Free ATM withdrawals (using  MoneyPass® 24,000 locations)
  • Free Online Bill pay
  • Fraud Protection
  • Reserve account

Learn More

American Express Serve Issues

It's only an issue we've seen in 2020 and it may not affect most cardholders but in the late hours at night and early hours in the morning (7am and earlier) Amex server seems to be down a lot. This mean you can't transfer funds from your Reserve account to your Balance. If you have all of your money in your balance then this will not affect you because you can still make purchases with the card.

Amex serve card issues

Amex Serve App Server Down

Amex serve app issues

American Express Serve® FREE Reloads

American Express Serve® Free Reload prepaid card charges $4.95 per month. One of the greatest benefits of this Serve card is that your reload is completely free. If you are a frequent “reloader” then the American Express Serve® Free Reloads card is definitely for you. Here are a few other beneficial information regarding American Express Serve® Free Reloads prepaid card:

  • No Hidden Fees
  • No Credit Check
  • No Minimum Balance
  • Free register online
  • Free direct deposit
  • Free Cash Reloads at 45,000 locations (find reload center)
  • Free Online Bill pay

Learn More

 

American Express Serve® Cash Back

American Express Serve® Cash Back prepaid card charges $5.95 per month. The reload charge is $3.95 (same as the American Express Serve Prepaid Card) however, it varies by retailers. The major benefit with the American Express Serve® Cash Back card is that you get 1% cashback into your account when shopping at millions of locations. Here are a few other beneficial information regarding American Express Serve® Cash back prepaid card:

  • No Hidden Fees
  • No Credit Check
  • No Minimum Balance
  • Free register online
  • Free direct deposit
  • Unlimited 1% Cash back
  • Free Online Bill pay
  • Fraud protection

Learn More

 

My Amex Serve Card Experience

Amex Serve Card

I've had the American Express Serve prepaid card (the blue card) for almost 3 years now and its the prepaid card I've actively used most. Below I will be discussing my experience with this card in detail including what I like about it, issues that I've encountered over the 3 years and cons of the prepaid card.

Monthly Fees - The monthly fees have never been an issue for me. It was sort of a shock to me that the Serve card has a monthly fee of $6.95. I have more than $500 direct deposited onto the card so my monthly fee is always waived. However, there's another benefit for those living in New York City. If you live in New York like me, the monthly fee is actually only $1 even without the direct deposit. NY cardholders and several other states are exempt from paying the $6.95 monthly fee.

Transaction fees - The Serve card comes with very little fees to begin with. I rarely use my Amex Serve card in stores because Im more of a shopping-online kind of person. However, if you decide to use your card in-store there are no transaction fees including pin or signature purchases.

ATM fees - In the beginning, like most of you I wasn't aware I was being charged to withdraw money from my card at the ATM. The ATM fee is $2.50, this is on top of what the ATM charge which is usually around $2.50 (some charge as high as $3.00). So I was withdrawing cash often early on without realizing I was being charged $5.00 for every withdrawal. This is a fee that could cost you a significant amount if you use the ATM often. During my 3rd year with the prepaid card I use the atm less frequently, maybe once a month if that. You should never be charged an ATM decline fee, simply because you can use the Serve mobile app to check your balance for free before attempting to withdraw money from your card.

Tip💡: When and if you need to withdraw money from the ATM withdraw enough cash so you won't have to take out cash again at least for the month. Some purchases you absolutely have to have cash but for most purchases you can just swipe your card and pay fee free, saving you money.

American Express Serve Cons - The only thing I view as a con about the Serve card is that American Express isn't as accepted as Mastercard or Visa. This means you may have to have a second prepaid debit card with the Mastercard/Visa logo or pay with cash. Paying with cash means you have to go to the ATM and be charged $5 fee on top of whatever your purchase cost. There are many negative reviews online from cardholders especially recently about their accounts being suspended but I personally haven't had a problem accessing my money or paying for items over the course of 3 years. Your experience may reflect my own or it may resemble those who have had issues.


Amex Serve Card Issues

Amex Serve Card

ATM Decline

Once I was attempting to use the ATM and my card was declined even though I had cash in the balance. I called customer service who answered my call immediately and was very supportive and walked me through the issue. The issue was Amex couldn't retrieve the $2.50 charge from the withdrawal so all I had to do was add $2-$3 more to my balance. Problem solved.

There are ATMs where I cannot withdraw money from, specifically bank branded ATMs such as Chase or Bank of America. So I quit attempting to withdraw money from those ATM to save myself the embarrassment.

Online Transaction Decline

This is an issue I still haven't figured out yet. When the Amex Serve card gets declined by a company such as Airbnb because they couldn't verify the request a strange thing happens...all regular transactions start getting decline. Transactions that I have been making regularly will receive a "Declined" message but the payment will actually go through. Its a little annoying and I still get my purchase but I can't figure out why this happen. Im sure its a technical issue or something invokving the merchants fraudulent purchase check. This has happened 3 times over the course of 3 years.

Conclusion

All in all I love 💙 this American Express prepaid card. Its low on fees and the ATM fees can be avoided. I've encountered very little technical issues and have not had any problems accessing my money. Because American Express isn't accepted at as many stores as Mastercard/Visa and my encounter with some online declined transactions issue, I would recommend having a second prepaid card thats either a Mastercard or Visa as a backup.

YOU MAY BE INTERESTED IN