Target REDcard Visa Gift Card Load Success!

Target REDcard 

For quite some time the Target REDcard prepaid was the easiest and cheapest (free) way to manufacture spend $5,000 per month.

Then things started to change. In February I wondered if Target was limiting credit card loads to REDcard to $1,000 per day? This wasn’t exactly the case but was the rule for many locations…

I had not so great results loading my card at the beginning of March followed by a great experience in Charleston, SC.

It really seemed like each Target had the authority to make up their own policies when it came to REDcard. At stores close to home in Brooklyn, NY a manager was needed to load the card which could cause ridiculously long waits.

Just before the end of credit card loads to REDcard I had a good experience loading my card in Atlanta and was never asked this before. Then there was news of the end of credit card loads and I wondered what was next?

While I still don’t have an answer as to what’s next (MS in the NYC area seems to always be more difficult than in other areas), I did have a new kind of success with my REDcard at a Target in Brooklyn recently.

The REDcard might not be the most helpful tool anymore for hitting minimum spends on new credit cards but it can be a great way to earn other miles and points.

Target REDcard 

I had read that loading REDcard with prepaid debit gift cards was an option to try out but was not without issue.

Most debit gift cards do not have our names on them and also have the words Gift Card clearly spelled out on the front. Would Target ask to see the card being used to load REDcard and deem gift cards as an unacceptable type of debit card to use for loads? Due to how strict Target stores close to home became with loading REDcard, I was hesitant to give this option a try but felt that I needed to.


Over the past couple of years I’ve used up quite a few United miles on two trips to the Balkans (2013 and 2014) and our recent trip to Myanmar. Considering that it just about always seems that United has award availability to the destinations we want to go, I need a way to replenish my account.

I decided to do a test at a Target in Brooklyn.

I bought one $200 Visa gift card at Staples with my Chase Ink card. For the $6.95 fee I earned 1,000 Ink points. Now I needed to unload the funds.

Target REDcard 

I covered the words Gift Card with the sticker to make my debit card look less obvious that it was a gift card.

I headed over to the Target Gateway location and waited at the customer service area for around 5 minutes on line. When it was my turn, I asked to load my REDcard with my debit. Without a blink of an eye the customer service rep said sure and then told me to swipe. I was at the register no more than a minute and a half before I was done with this load!

WOW. Yes I was a bit surprised. No suspicious looks or asking to see my debit card or a photo ID.

While I know debit gift card loads do work, I thought it would’ve been a bit of a hassle close to home.

Now it’s time to head to Staples and pick up a few more gift cards. When I go to Target next time, I definitely want to load a bit more than one $200 gift card. I’ll probably just try to load 2 (maybe 3) cards.

It’s probably better to not ask to swipe too many debit cards in one transaction.

Have you loaded your Target REDcard with prepaid gift cards? If so, have you taken a cautious approach or do you try to load as much possible during each visit?

18 thoughts on “Target REDcard Visa Gift Card Load Success!

  1. NYCAnalyst- I wish Target did have to accept credit cards but I doubt any terms are being violated. The other Brooklyn Target stores are not close enough for you to visit?

  2. Thanks for the response Michael. When I googled I saw that the Atlantic Ave Target was the first to stop accepting credit card loads, but I could not find anything saying that they would not accept Visa gift cards. I would think this would be a violation of the terms of service for Visa, Amex, or both.

    Might be too hard for me to do any manufactured spending now unless I can find a place that takes Visa gift cards for money orders.

  3. NYCAnalyst- The Target in Atlantic Terminal hasn’t allowed REDcard loads with gift cards for a very long time which is no secret. I haven’t bothered with that location in months. If you can, give the other locations in Brooklyn a shot.

  4. I recently bought a redcard online and yesterday I went to Atlantic Ave Target in Brooklyn to load it with a $200 visa gift card I bought at Staples. I waited in a short guest services line. I asked to load the card and the rep said “give me a minute” and walked away. She came back alone and asked to see the card I wanted to load with. I showed the VGC and she said I could only use bank issued debit cards. I asked why and if we could just try to see if it worked. She started to get rude and I said I would complain to corporate that they are violating policy. NYC sucks- things that are standard in the rest of the country can’t be done here.

  5. Megan, Kevin, JGR- Thanks for letting us know.

    Nigel- Sounds like it worked perfectly!

    ATX- Good luck unloading all of those cards. Hire someone to remove them! lol

    GG- I’m flattered that you think my posts about REDcard will cause change. Not sure why, but I somehow doubt that Target cares much about my posts.

  6. I loaded $1,500 last month but currently have around $4,000 in $200 and $100 amounts due to the huge money making rebate at Office Depot. I think when the employees found out you received $20 in profit for each transaction they started snapping them up.

    I hope unloading a box of Visa cards will go smoothly June 1st. Everyone seems very nice and experienced at the South Austin Target.

  7. Loaded 2 x $500 VGCs (purchased at a Simon Mall) the other evening in Northern VA (Woodbridge, VA near Potomac Mills). The person at the Customer Service desk did say “we’ll see what happens – there have been some changes” but there was no problem putting the 2 through. The last 4 numbers of the VGC card are the PIN number. No-one looked at the actual cards.

  8. JGR- Interesting- I never heard of a REDcard load getting voided. Glad that you tried again and had success at a register. Where are you located?

    Megan Z- Where are your local stores? I’ve found loading the card no issue when trying away from NYC.

    Fran- I’ve been considering ordering those cards when I need to hit a new spend. My only worry is if Target really cracks down on loads this way…

    Kevin- Where is your local Target?

    It would be great if everyone commenting could include which city/ state they are loading REDcard in. Thanks.

  9. I recently loaded 5-$500 at one time for $2500. No problem. I got the cards from They say Debit and have your name printed on them, but it didn’t matter as the clerk never asked to see the card.

  10. I have loaded around $3000 on my Target REDCard using VGC’s. It has never been an issue. One time, I loaded 6 cards at a time (separate transactions, one after the other) and the employee was smiling and helpful the whole time. I always just say that I’d like to load w/ a debit card and they are happy to assist. If they ask or act weird, I just tell them that I like to combine the cards that I have so I don’t have to carry them all around in my wallet. At least at my stores, it doesn’t seem to be a big deal at all.

  11. I went to load $200 from a VGC from Staples as well at customer service. Transaction went through and then cashier said “oh wait, no 3rd party cards allowed, I have to void it.” So she did. I went to do some actual shopping and when I was ready to pay, I went to a regular cashier and asked to load $200. They did it with no issues. Hope that you get an inexperienced CSR as more likely to process without any hiccups.

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