American Express Serve

Compare Prepaid Debit Cards

Research top Prepaid Debit Cards recommendations on ConsumerAffairs

Compare Companies

Consumer Complaints and Reviews

on
Satisfaction Rating

I called Amex Serve to put in a dispute after going to an ATM machine to take $20 out my account. It said transaction error so I tried a couple more times, I got the same message. So I got my receipts and tried at a different ATM machine and I successfully got my $20. Later that day I looked on my account and noticed that the money was taken out my account the first 3x I tried and didn't dispense the money. So I called Amex customer service to put in the dispute. The next day they credited my account of the money the ATM didn't dispense to me and the following day I get an email stating that my account was closed for a violation on the terms and agreement. I called them to see what was going on with my account and they had no answers. They are horrible. So now they have my money in that account and I have no access.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I've had the Serve card for almost a year and have never had a problem. The only downside is it's not accepted at a few of the places I frequent, so I pay cash. There are never any fees, as long as you use the listed locations for reloads and withdrawals. I have direct deposit, which is great! I also love the mobile app and they're always up to date on emails and alerts. Overall, I've been very pleased with the Serve card.

on
Satisfaction Rating

Rushing to complete a paper due I used my card at the FedEx print shop. I inadvertently left it in the card reader. Someone picked it up and helped themselves to my money. It was two days later that I went looking for it and realized it was gone. I checked my account and there was hundreds of dollars' worth of transactions that I did not make. I immediately contacted AES and reported this. They said a "complete investigation" would be done, however in less than 24 hours I got two emails; one stating that the charges were valid, the other that my account was closed due to a violation of their terms and conditions. Panicking, I called into their HORRIBLE customer service (overseas) and was told there was no one I could speak with and nothing more I could do. After begging the rep and supervisor for ANY type of suggestion they provided me an address to write to.

I wrote a letter detailing the situation and itemizing the charges that I did not make. About a month later I received a form letter telling me that "this may not be the answer I was looking for" but that there was nothing they could do. I also received a check for $2.50! This happened in September and I am coming to terms with the fact that someone has stolen from me and AES is %100 ok with that. I recommend the Simple.com card, I get alerts with every transaction and they have excellent customer service. I bought me a $400 lesson from AES to never, ever do business with them again.:(

on
Satisfaction Rating

I don't get checking accounts with banks because they over charge me which is why I stick to prepaid accounts. I have had multiple prepaid accounts so by experience this is my favorite card to use. Their customer service is excellent, I don't have any complaints. The only downside of using American Express is that not so many merchants accept it, which is a bummer. Other than that I'm very happy with my American Express Serve Account.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I conducted research on this card along with several prepaid cards as a trial for our unbanked employees to receive direct deposit. My direct deposit was rejected by American Express and never returned to my employer's banking account. I was told by American Express the account has a block due to suspicious activity. When I asked for specific information pertaining to the activity none was provided. This company is not an FDIC insured bank, they are a holding company that is able to steal consumers' money and get away with it because the consumers deposits are not insured or protected.

Please beware of this scam. Just know that once you make the deposit you will never be able to spend it because it will never post to your account. American Express serve customer service rep also stated the deposit protection we have only works if the deposit post my trail deposit never posted to my account which means the consumer cannot file a claim for a refund.

How do I know I can trust these reviews about American Express Serve?

  • 636,825 reviews on ConsumerAffairs are verified.
  • We require contact information to ensure our reviewers are real.
  • We use intelligent software that helps us maintain the integrity of reviews.
  • Our moderators read all reviews to verify quality and helpfulness.

For more information about reviews on ConsumerAffairs.com please visit our FAQ.

on
Satisfaction Rating

My Wife's Serve Card was lost - so on October 6th I called the 800 Number, requested a Replacement, and told to wait seven to ten days. After ten days I called Customer Service - on a daily basis - as the Card never arrived. I was told: 1) That their Card Printing System was down in September, which affected Card Printing, 2) That their Card Printing System was down in October, which affected Card Printing, 3) That the Post Office had not verified my Street Address, 4) That Credit Cards are only delivered on Thursday, for Security Reasons, and 5) That seven to days is just an estimate, and that it could take six weeks.

Sadly, because the Customer Service Department is NOT in the U.S., there is no way for the Call Center to communicate with the Card Center, so there is no way of knowing if the Replacement Card Order was actually processed, if the Card Center actually made the new Card, or if the Replacement Card was actually sent. Customer Service - even Supervisors - have no answers, no suggestions, and no way to resolve the issue. Given the vast number of Complaints I've seen, I am surprised Am Ex would even continue their relationship. Truly poor.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I lost my Serve card one night. I looked for it for about 2 days when I realized it wasn't in my possession anymore. I looked online and saw that it was being used and they had used 106 dollars of my money. I transferred the remaining balance to my mother's card because I knew once I called they would deactivate the card. So I called in to let them know what was going on. They said they would do a investigation and it would take up to 45 days. I agreed and called every week to see what the update was. They said it was still being investigated so I waited.

On the 45th day I received a email that stated my account was closed. I didn't understand what was going so I called them and they gave me a BS story about how I broke the rules. When I asked what rule they couldn't tell me. So now I'm out of my 106 and I won't be able to open a next account even though I would definitely not open a another account nor would I suggest anyone one. It was such a disappointment that they couldn't fix my account.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I made a dispute about three airline tickets purchased with my Serve account, they claim they investigated the purchase and found they were valid and authorized. I DID NOT MAKE THOSE PURCHASES. They did ask if the card was lost or stolen, and I said "no, it wasn't". To add insult to injury, they also locked the account and said it would be unlikely for them to approve another account. Instead of explaining exactly why the account was locked, they just threw an error code at me from their onerous online agreement. It wasn't until I talked to someone on the phone that they hinted that the lock was because of the dispute.

In other words, you complained too many times, so get out. They are mailing me a check for what was left but I'm out $700 for no reason at all. I stated that my information must have been hacked and intercepted somehow and I gave them valid reasons why I wouldn't even bother buying any airline tickets now (heel injury, documented by my podiatrist) and I said my account had obviously been hacked, but they wouldn't hear of it. They mentioned some nonsense that the fraudulent transactions were 'manually entered' so it could not have been anyone else but me.

When I asked, "Where did those tickets go?" they just gave me an address to write to, which is extremely insulting in this day and age of email. This is the first and obviously last time I will ever use American Express Serve. They advertise Fraud Protection on their ads and web page but in my opinion this protection is very poor. Their fraud department is likely overworked, as I did have one dispute before this and it was processed correctly. It was easier just to cut me off and let me go.

I have to admit their TV commercials were cutesy and portrayed a friendly company willing to stand behind you. In reality they are just greedy nimrods who just want to hold your money and give you minimum effort for benefits. If you ever come across some extra money, or get a nice refund somewhere along the line, put it in a REAL bank that has a REAL fraud department. Avoid American Express Serve like it was covered in open sores and multi-legged vermin. Serve only Serves their own pockets. They sure as hell don't like Serving you.

on
Satisfaction Rating

They have poor customer service. I submitted a claim for a charge that was not my own but someone had compromised my account to pay their bill and I was penalized and had my account shut down because I knew of the merchant but did not use them with my account with serve.

on
Satisfaction Rating

On 09/12/2016 was trying to make a deposit on another account and my money was put on the wrong account. The transaction was cancelled by the other company the same day. I called American Express Serve on 09/15/2016 and the rep told me that it would take 3-5 business days for the money to be returned to the card and now today I was told that it would be 8 days. I just got out of the hospital and my blood is septic and I have a antibiotic that I have to have because I have poison in my blood. I can't wait 8 days for the money to be returned. I need help now before I get sick again. Somebody please help me. These people are liars and this card is a scam.

on
Satisfaction Rating

American Express allowed CheapOair merchant to force a payment where there were no funds available to do so and put a negative balance on an account and the card is prepaid! They're holding $500 of which was for my rent and they want me to wait 10 days while they dispute with CheapOair. Neither party is assuming responsibility and no one from American Express is being helpful. CheapOair is stating American Express is the one who charged the account twice for $895.00 and they allowed the merchant to do so with no available funds in the account and they put the account in negative $397. I need help. This is not right and it's fraud!

on
Satisfaction Rating

I attempted to make a withdrawal from my Serve account at the ATM. The transaction was declined, the receipt read "declined host error". I attempted several times to complete this transaction, each time with the same results. Finally, on the 5th try the transaction was approved and cash was dispensed. Unbeknownst to me, the funds plus, fees were being deducted although no cash was dispensed. I called customer service after I discovered the error. I was informed that I would receive an email with a dispute form attached. I was to complete the form and return it within 10 business days. To my surprise, my account was closed two days later. I was informed of the action by email and no reason was given. When I tried to download and submit the dispute form I was unable to do so. However, I responded in writing via email to their supposedly secure site.

It would not allow me to upload the receipts for the disputed transactions. I stated I would fax the documentation. The next day I received an email stating cash was dispensed. They made a determination on the merits of the claim before all documentation was submitted. Basically, they took my money and said "oh well". There is no phone number for customer relations, the dept. that initiated these actions and customer service is no help. They keep shifting the blame to customer relations.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I am having a very bad experience with the American Express VIP ONE card. I attempted to withdraw some money from my local ATM, this was on April 29,2016. As I said I attempted to withdraw $200.00 from the ATM and the ATM only dispensed me $100.00. Since then I have been going round and round with American Express ever since. I filed a dispute with them as they instructed me to do. They gave me a provisional $100.00 while they investigated the matter. Needless to say they closed my cases on June 10, 2016 in favor of them. On June 13, 2016 the ATM company Allpoint sent documentation that I was shorted at the ATM on April 29, 2016. American Express then took back the provisional $100.00 which left my card - $100.00. Came the time for my monthly check to be deposited I was short and had to live without going to the grocery store for the month.

Then they turned around when I told them that I was calling the Attorney General's office on them. They gave me another provisional $100.00, and now they are taking it back again. Because they are still trying to say that I received the whole $200.00. Now I want them to make this make sense to me. I'm on a fixed income why would I lied about something like that when I know that will take the money back.

I am no longer going to use the card anymore. I went and got my checking account back with PNC because I can't afford or nor do I wish to live without my money again while they try to get it together. I am still filing the complaint with the Attorney General's office, because I don't think anyone should have to go thru this just to get their own money back. And I am going to tell anyone I cannot to deal with the VIP One Card or American Express. Life is too short to be dealing with things like that. The commercial make it seem like your life will be so much better with their card, NOT.

on
Satisfaction Rating

Fraudulent transactions - I have been in contact with these people I don't know how many times... and I still don't have my money back after waiting for their stupid review which on their end it wasn't fraudulent. So they closed my account but it indeed was so the company sent my money back to AES but by this time they closed my account like I did something wrong. Asking to speak to a supervisor is completely useless and I still have to wait to get my money back even though I did nothing wrong. This card and this company is a joke. I'm so frustrated. All I wanted was my money back that should have never been touched in the first place!!!

on
Satisfaction Rating

I have been a Serve member for almost three years. The other day they lock me out my account with no explanation. They tell me I was in violation of one of their terms. I tell them "this is not true, please show me your evidence." They then say "that is not important, the only thing that matter is our decision to close your account." They have stolen over 500 dollars from me. I will do anything to get some justice from these low forms of life.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I noticed 2 fraudulent transactions on my husband's account that were made one right after the other. I immediately notified AES. They explained that they can't do anything until the two transactions have actually cleared. Then we would have to wait for AES to investigate the transactions (they admit were fraudulent) to determine if they are in fact fraudulent. Then we would have to wait 10 to 15 days to get our hard earned money back. After requesting to speak with a supervisor, we were put on hold for over an hour and a half, only to be connected to another associate. They had no real supervisor available. I'm shocked that this account is in any way affiliated with American Express. Unfortunately, because of the way my husband's account was mishandled, I will be closing my account as well as my son's account. They have no protocol for determining fraudulent transactions and when they are immediately brought to their attention, nothing is done.

on
Satisfaction Rating

Over a year ago, I was asked by a Starbuck's location to use my phone/scanning to receive a $5 coupon. What they failed to mention was that the transaction is facilitated through American Express Serve. I have for over one (1) year been trying to delete this account w/ AES unsuccessfully. I do not have an American Express Card or account of any kind, never applied, nor do I want one. When I try to go into my account attempting to find a "Delete" button, I continually come across "security questions" that I have never been asked or could possibly answer, so essentially AES keeps me locked out from any possible successful Log-In. I have also SENT a letter to AES demanding elimination of this account.

Even though the Balance would / should read $0, I DO NOT LIKE THE IDEA OF HAVING AN OPEN ACCOUNT ANYWHERE, particularly when I have no desire to have this said specific account anytime in the future. What can the Consumer Affairs agency do to remedy my situation once and for all? I would truly appreciate email confirmation that this has been taken care of. I hope I'm not just blowing more hot air to the wind. Anticipating the Consumer Affairs agency has some authority to make things happen better than consumers are able to do for themselves.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I lost my card and before I canceled it I asked the consumer representative if there was ANY WAY I could get my money off of the card before it was cancelled. The agent told me there was no way except to get a friend or family member to buy an American Express Serve card and open an account themselves, then transfer my money to that card. So I cancelled the card and ordered a new one. Later I go online to the Serve website and find out there was an option called RIA in which my funds could have been transferred to any Walmart in the U.S. or Puerto Rico. I called back and asked if I could use the RIA option and was told no because the card was cancelled and I would have needed to tell them the 3-digit security code on the back of the card. Well I told a supervisor, I HAVE THOSE NUMBERS SAVED!!

If the first two agents I had spoken to had only mentioned the RIA option I would have been able to transfer my money to my local Walmart and not be absolutely without any of my earned money for 7-10 business days which translates into two weeks. I am insanely disappointed with American Express Serve. Not only is it difficult to use the card at small businesses, they do absolutely nothing to help you when you need them the most, and then try to get you to spread their disease to one of your friends or family members just to get your own money. When that new card comes I am going to empty every dime from it and cancel my direct deposit and my account with American Express.

on
Satisfaction Rating

If I could give this company a -0 I would... I signed up to receive an American Express Serve card 2 months ago... 2 MONTHS AGO and I regret ever signing up for this crap. I recently reported some fraudulent activity on my acct and was told that an investigation would ensue. A week later I get an email saying that not only will they not credit my acct the money that was taken from these fraudulent charges, but that my acct is being suspended permanently. I was told that their "investigation" determined that the charges were not made under any fraudulent circumstances. However, after personally contacting the companies that were in question, I was told that someone with a different name and shipping address (which is another state) made the purchase.

The last time I checked, I did not need to purchase something under another person's name and mail to a address that I have no idea about. In addition, why didn't American Express verify the name and the address on the acct before clearing the purchase? And because of their half ** investigation my money is now being held in a suspended acct. I cannot tell you how livid I am right now. I asked when my money would be mailed to me and the stupid ** customer service rep couldn't even answer the question.

I am making this very clear one time only. If my money is not mailed to me within 7-10 business days from today, I will not only be formally suing American Express, I will also be making daily complaints on the BBB site or any site that will allow me to make a complaint and I will also be going to any news channel and making it known that American Express is a fraud. Not only was there fraud committed on my acct but fraud was committed on me as a customer. You have seriously messed with the wrong one. They should be ashamed of themselves. A company that makes millions of dollars, should not be this bent on ripping off their customers. Someday soon, I hope there are enough people to file a class action lawsuit against this company.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I have been using the Serve card for 4 years now and have had no problems until just this last week. I made an online payment to the hotel where I'm staying, which declined on the hotel's end. American Express put the funds on hold, however, and after two 3-way phone calls between myself, American Express, and the manager of the hotel who confirmed that they WOULD NOT be able to receive the money I tried to pay to them, American Express refuses to release the funds back into my account. I have now had to come up with additional funds to pay the hotel, and I am now left completely broke. I now have 4 more days to wait until my funds are released, and meanwhile, I cannot feed myself or my 2 kids, or put gas in my car. They absolutely refuse to help me. I am currently searching for another financial institution who can handle my money properly, at which point I will say goodbye forever to the Serve card, and American Express.

on
Satisfaction Rating

My husband received SSA retirement and in May 2016, he called Serve on May 1, 2016 speaking about why his check did not deposit 2 days early as the Serve Card had advertised and the rep said "It depends on the company and when they would allow the money to become active." We found out that The Serve Card had and is still currently posting false advertisements. Normally my husband receives his retirement check at midnight (1 minute after the clock flips over to the 3rd day of every month) which when he checked his Serve Card the money was not on his new account. We contacted the Serve Card and they said "Your card does not show any money to be applied nor a pending transaction."

However from May 31st 2016 - June 2, 2016 his account had showed a pending transaction but on June 3, 2016 the transaction had not been applied to his card nor was there a pending transaction on his account. It is as though my husband's retirement check has disappeared. My husband went to the Social Security administration and it shows his benefits had been sent to the number from the slip my husband received and has turned into Social Security administration. I use Bluebird by American Express and I never have no problems. We will be taking this to an attorney and to the division who are in control over this card! They are stealing from people!

on
Satisfaction Rating

Got a hotel. They didn't authorize a hold of $25 but American Express did!!! They steal money from you over and over!!! Don't get one or you will be beyond sorry. I lost total of $350 from them doing this.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I ordered a Serve card so I can keep all my business expenses organized for tax season since I am a self-employed consultant. I only got to use it once before it was stolen. Someone charged a bunch of small stuff totaling approx $450, which I disputed. They sent me a new card and I got to use it only about 3 or 4 more times before they abruptly shut down my account. Turns out they declined the entire disputed amount, then "I" was considered in violation of their agreement, so they shut down my account. They won't even let me sign up for another one! So two things here: first, if you get fraudulent charges on your Serve account, good luck with that! Then, if you report fraud on your card, prepare to "be in violation of their terms" (since most likely it will be declined and it's YOUR fault) and get shut out of the service for good!

on
Satisfaction Rating

I ordered the card online, received it. The direct deposit slip number came with card to give to employer. I did just that. Payday comes and no money. I call the customer service number for the Serve Card. A guy states "Oh we are sorry. We provided the wrong direct deposit number. Here is the new one." So now I'm out of money for another two weeks. I am getting a lawyer and suing this company for their wrongdoing. Who know whose account my direct deposit went to. DO NOT GET THE CARD!!!

on
Satisfaction Rating

I recently had 2 unauthorized charges from the same merchant and, when I called to make a fraud claim, they accepted 1 but denied the other making my account negative. I have spent a month trying to sort this out, going through supervisor after supervisor, trying to explain that both charges were under the exact same fraudulent circumstances and the other charge needs to be credited. For a month, I have been told that someone in the "claims department" will email me and for a month I have been ignored. I have family who worked in the real credit card fraud industry and I know exactly how things are supposed to work. Serve by American Express is failing miserably in every aspect of fraud resolution and even customer service.

I have read the other reviews and I sincerely wish I could reply to them because what everyone going through this needs to know is that the government organization you need to contact is the OCC. They regulate all financial institutions and can actually bring sanctions against companies who violate their rules and regulations. The OCC has an online complaint form that you can fill out and submit and they will contact the company on your behalf to help work toward a satisfactory resolution. Generally, just hearing the word "OCC" is enough to scare the living daylights out of people and might just kick them into high gear. I hope this information helps and that everyone here, or who has ever been screwed out of money by Serve, gets their money back.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I HATE THIS CARD!!! On Friday, April 15, 2016 I was expecting part of my payroll deposit to be on my card, $200. Payday has come and went, and still no money. I go to my HR department, and they confirmed for me that the deposit was sent and received successfully. They even gave a trace number. Now SERVE can't find my deposit, and they say they never received it!!! I'm PISSED!! This is my hard earned money that I have confirmed on numerous occasions, about the routing number and account number, and that it was sent SUCCESSFULLY.

Please don't deposit any of your hard earned money onto this card!!! If you want to do a cash load at a 7-Eleven, that's fine. But don't bother with trying to do an ACH deposit. SMH... how can they not have my money?? I read the reviews, and I went ahead and gave them a chance anyway. NEVER AGAIN! I'm sticking with cards that are actually tied to a physical bank.

on
Satisfaction Rating

My Serve card was hacked and when I contacted American Express they said they would have the money back within one to two days and someone would call me. Well no one ever called me and I never received the money. They just suspended my privileges and locked the card. When I called to ask why they said they had no information and all I could do was go to the police and file a report. I will never recommend them to anyone. They are pathetic and the customer service is ridiculous. This happened on 3-30-2016.

on
Satisfaction Rating

My card was suddenly froze in January 2016 with no notice, no email, nothing. When I called and asked them why they said "upgrades". I loaded over 100 on the card that same day at local retail store. The clerk told me the load went through. It is now March 2016, and I have yet to see the load posted on my account. American Express blames the retailer. They gave me a provisional credit - then took it back. Questions: 1. Why would they freeze a good, active account without any notification whatsoever? 2. Why would they still allow a retailer to accept loads if their system was down?

on
Satisfaction Rating

My account was hacked 03/15/2016. I call American Express Serve fraud department. They said will call me back in 48 hours. Well these people not only didn't return my calls they closed my account and send me a $2 dollar check. Please people out there don't trust American Express Serve. It's a fraud. It's not secure. Tell people out here it is not secure. I will keep reporting these crooks to all websites so people don't get rob. I have send a letter to the BBB and DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE. Please everybody do the same. We can make a difference. I was rob $600 dollars.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I have called and called to discuss what is going on with my or refund that Jackson Hewitt put on this American Express Serve card. For one the card came to me already activated. Strange I thought. And I checked my balance to see thousands of dollars gone. So I've called 8554316040 hundreds of times. Mind you this is all located in the Philippines. I've been hung up on, no credits back to my account and yesterday 3/1 tried to use my card and it's LOCKED! REALLY. This is bs, a total fraud. What's worse is that I was trying to pay my phone bill and I can't even do that. So out of the thousands of dollars stolen I can't even get the last 130 left out of all my money. What can I do? I am sick to my stomach from this.

Expert Review

Barbara FriedbergPersonal Finance Contributing Editor

Barbara Friedberg, MBA, MS is a former investment portfolio manager with decades of financial experience. Friedberg taught Finance and Investments at several universities. Her work has been featured in U.S. News & World Report, Investopedia, Yahoo!Finance and many more publications.    More about Barbara→

The American Express Serve offers three prepaid debit cards under the American Express umbrella. The Serve cards provide the backing of the American Express brand. American Express is the world’s largest card issuer by purchase volume according the American Express website.

  • Products: The three American Express Serve® debit cards include the basic Serve®, FREE Reloads and the Cash Back card.
  • Card prices: Online all three cards are free. The price is up to $3.95 in retail locations.
  • Low monthly fees: The monthly maintenance fee is only $1 for the standard card, and it is waived for consumers that meet the minimum deposit amount of $500. The fees for the FREE Reloads and Cash Back cards are $4.95 and $5.95 per month respectively.
  • No charge card loading: Direct deposit, mobile check deposit and adding funds from a bank account are all free.
  • Cash back: Unlimited one percent cash back on all purchases in store or online.
  • Free card replacement: There’s no charge for card replacement for any reason.
  • Free ATM withdrawals: As long as consumers use one of the in-network MoneyPass® ATMs, there is no fee. There is a $2.50 non-MoneyPass ATM withdrawal charge and the possibility of additional ATM operator fees.
  • Free services: There are no charges for online bill pay, sending and receiving money, setting aside money in reserves. There is also protection on eligible purchases.
  • Best for Those who tend to overdraw their accounts and those who want flexible prepaid debit card solutions.

Compare Prepaid Debit Cards

American Express Serve Company Profile

Company Name:
American Express Serve
Address:
4315 S 2700 W
City:
Salt Lake City
State/Province:
UT
Postal Code:
84184-0440
Country:
United States
Website:
https://www.serve.com/