Edit: Walgreens is no longer allowing Vanilla Reloads to be bought with rewards credit cards, or pre paid debit cards.
As you all know by now – Office Depot has stopped selling Vanilla reloads. Boo.
However, don’t cry too much because when one opportunity dies, another rises. That sounded like something out of a Batman movie. One with Christian Bale.
The new opportunity that’s in front of us is finding new stores, or creative ways to still earn miles/points with Vanilla Reloads. But, why? Well, if you don’t know why, then you probably don’t own a computer, and if you do, you’re still using AOL dial up.
The reason we want Vanilla reloads is to load Bluebird, so we can pay our mortgage, credit card bills, etc. and earn miles while doing so.
Where to find Vanilla Reloads?
Here’s a list from Vanillareload.com where Vanilla reloads are sold.
- 7-11 Handee Mart
- 7-11 SW
- 7-11 Garbko
- Cogo’s Co.
- CoMac, Inc.
- TEVIS OIL, INC.
- DANDY MINI MARTS
- Nouria Energy 12
- E and C Enterprises
- Office Depot
- Nittany Oil Co., Inc.
- Family Dollar
- Dollar General
- Save Mart
- United Dairy Farmers
- Everyday Shop
- Li’l Cricket
- Next Door Store
- Village Pantry
- Cigarette City
- Flash Foods
- Dash In
There you go. Talk about options! Ok, I haven’t heard of half of those stores, but I’m sure they exist somewhere. IMHO, the most common stores would have to be Walgreens, CVS, and Valero.
Now, I haven’t had any issues finding a CVS or Walgreens that carry Vanilla reloads. BUT the trick is finding a CVS or Walgreens that will allow you to pay with a credit card. In Austin, I haven’t been able to locate a Walgreens that will allow you to, but I’ve heard from many readers that they have been able to at Walgreens.
I’ve had great success at CVS, though. Like, I’m batting 1000% (sports reference). From the emails I’m receiving from readers, they have had great luck with CVS too.
You can still earn points at Office Depot.
The reason the world was ablaze with Bluebird, Vanilla, and Office Depot was…
Obviously, losing this mega opportunity to earn mega points was a huge kick to the groin.
Which credit card to use?
First of all, buying Vanilla reloads is a great way to meet minimum spending requirements on cards you just applied for. So if you’re trying to meet a spend on a card, then use that card to buy Vanillas at a CVS, Walgreens, etc. Then load up your Bluebird account and pay your bills, earning those miles, yo.
After those cards, it all depends on what kind of miles/points you’re trying to earn. Plus, you need to take into consideration any category bonuses or calendar year spending bonuses. I will do another post later with all of these options.
It’s not all doom and gloom, after all. You can now find Vanilla reloads at many different stores, and CVS & Walgreens are allowing you to buy them with rewards credit cards (for now). No one knows how long this will last, but I can’t imagine it going on forever, especially with all the publicity.
Remember to stay within your own means when buying Vanilla reloads and gift cards. I always suggest doing no more that $2,000 a month, but that’s just the number I’m comfortable with. Like one reader told me, it’s purely subjective based on your income, spending habits, and responsibility. It’s possible to do more, if you’re running more expenses through your credit card. But be wise!
Thank you to all the readers who emailed me with their experiences. I truly appreciate it!
— Geoff Whitmore