Update: As of 4/5 CVS is no longer accepting credit cards for Vanilla Reload purchases.
As I predicted, the news that CVS would implement a cash-only policy for Vanilla Reloads was simply a regional change. That didn’t stop folks from going on a buying spree this weekend (guilty) and the corresponding Flyertalk thread exploding with hysteria. I headed to the closest store, where the racks were now fully stocked and the cashier had no problem ringing up my purchase with a credit card.
On Twitter, there have been several reports about locations in Michigan, South Carolina, Florida still accepting credit cards, while Michael W was told otherwise at a Brooklyn CVS. That seems to be a case of an overzealous manager who claimed the rule had always been cash-only. He would have had success at the next location if they hadn’t run out of Vanilla Reloads (see the feeding frenzy mentioned above). The manager did verify with him that the store would not be implementing a cash-only policy.
Overall, we seem to be safe. I’ve been to CVS stores all around the Bay Area and can attest that over the past year alone, several stores that used to take credit cards changed their policy to “cash only” – some reversed this decision and lowered the purchase limits, then increased them again. I never know what I’m going to get, walking into CVS on any given day. One thing is clear though: There does not appear to be a nation-wide memo to go cash-only. At least not yet.
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