A New Location for Vanilla Reloads! New Yorkers Rejoice!

by Adam

Living in New York City there’s been only one place to buy Vanilla Reloads with a credit card for quite some time now. That three letter store has stocked sporadically at certain city locations, but had plenty of availability in the Long Island, New Jersey, and Connecticut suburbs. Well, today I was completely surprised when I spotted Vanilla Reloads in the wild, at a store that has 250 locations throughout the city! The next big test was if they would accept credit card for payment. SUCCESS! Next, how many could I purchase in one transaction and would a balance over $1000 block the transaction? Nope, two cards at $500 a piece plus transaction fees were accepted, though a driver’s license was required for credit card verification. Unfortunately, I didn’t have time to test if I could go much higher, though there clearly wasn’t a 1K limit. Interestingly enough, this NYC based chain is now owned by Walgreens, who prevents credit card VR purchases at their own stores.

In any case, this is awesome news! These were found at a location by my office, but I just checked the location by my home and saw the VR cards there as well…perhaps stocked for the holidays?

Update 11/29/13 – While 6 readers and I were able to use our credit cards to purchase VRs at the Duane Reade on 53rd and Lex on Wednesday, it sadly appears that this may have been  a combination of a system glitch (like Walgreens the computers are supposed to block such transactions) and an inexperienced holiday cashier team. Credit cards are no longer being accepted. Strangely enough, four other readers reported success using credit cards at an UWS location (102 / B’way) also on Wednesday, though by later that night the system was again restricting credit card VR purchases. What a bummer! Hopefully, more of you had some success during the glitch and found some other locations! So, for now VRs have made their way to Duane Reade, but are worthless in terms of using a credit card to pay. Sadly the rejoicing has ended!

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16 comments

Food Wine and Miles November 27, 2013 - 11:21 am

VERY interesting. Probably only a matter of time before they shut it down though. This NYC-based chain is going to get a lot of attention from VR-starved NYers this weekend!

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Jack November 27, 2013 - 12:10 pm

Gary posted about your find and there are a few replies on his forum that say the poster tried it and it is cash only. Don’t know if that is just posters wanting others not to try (so they can empty out the stores) or if some of the stores are like Walgreens with the hard coded register. If I were you I would run out and hit this hard because you know others are going to and it will likely not last till Christmas. So get your presents now.

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adam November 27, 2013 - 12:12 pm

@Jack – Interesting… feel free to email me for the location if you are interested!

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DKM November 27, 2013 - 12:26 pm

Would love to get the location. Thanks.

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adam November 27, 2013 - 12:27 pm Reply
LK November 27, 2013 - 12:39 pm

Tried 2 Manhattan DR, cash only

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adam November 27, 2013 - 12:44 pm

@LK – It was the DR on 53 and LEX. One of the readers who lives in that area is heading over momentarily to attempt a purchase to make sure it wasn’t a fluke…I also purchased some holiday gift cards at the location as well with a cc without any difficulties.

I’ll keep everyone updated once I hear back.

UPDATE 2:40 – From reader Seth “Hmmm. Someone is reporting on FT that West Side DRs accepted CCs as well today.”
UPDATE 2:44 – From reader Mike P – Success at 53rd and Lex, 3 cards remaining!

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Chanel November 27, 2013 - 12:44 pm

Interesting, going to look into the one by my house today!

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adam November 27, 2013 - 12:47 pm

@Chanel – Let us know what you find out!

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Joey November 27, 2013 - 1:26 pm

just took a break from work to check this out and unfortunately it was cash only (this is downtown wall st location). It’s probably similar to CVS where some locations will accept CC and some won’t… or perhaps it just depends on how new the employee is.

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New York-Based Duane Reade Drugstores Now Accept Credit Cards for Vanilla Reload Cards - View from the Wing - View from the Wing November 27, 2013 - 1:32 pm

[…] tip to Point Me to the Plane who reports success in finding Vanilla Reload cards at Duane Reade drugstores, and making a purchase for (2) $500 cards […]

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Vanilla Reloads Found At Duane Reade | Chasing The Points November 27, 2013 - 2:37 pm

[…] Hat Tip to Point Me to the Plane for finding Vanilla Reloads at Duane Reade. […]

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Abbas November 27, 2013 - 6:52 pm

Tried the DR on 56th & Park, no go, cash only 🙁

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Bob November 28, 2013 - 11:27 am

14th St btwn B’way and 4th Ave. Cash only. It was an inexperienced cashier and his computer told him cash only right away. Oh well.

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adam November 29, 2013 - 9:35 am

@Bob – Damn, sorry, looks like a few of us might have just caught a glitch or got lucky on Weds. Sadly updating the post now. 🙁

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Vanilla Reloads Found At Duane Reade – Chasing The Points January 26, 2014 - 12:35 pm

[…] Hat Tip to Point Me to the Plane for finding Vanilla Reloads at Duane Reade. […]

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