A Quick New Year’s Reminder: Do Your Own Research

Happy 2015! I can’t believe it’s already 2015. I’ll post one of those year-end summary posts when I get around to it (probably around the same time I finish up my Vietnam/Cambodia trip report, as well as all the other ones that have been marinating in my notes).

I’ve been home for the holidays, and I found myself at Target to pick up a present for a family member. Since I was at Target anyway, I decided to wander over to the gift card/prepaid card section to see what they had on offer, and lo and behold I found a stack of prepaid REDcards aka Redbirds. I was giddy because I had recently given up on my Serve card due to my unwillingness to deal with Amex wanting a picture of every single one of my credit cards that I tried to use for online loads, and Redbird is a great replacement for MS.

But according to the internets, there’s no indication that Redbird is even available in this state. The Amex store locator doesn’t list the state as having any participating stores, the lengthy Flyertalk thread doesn’t mention this state as being somewhere you can buy the cards, and I didn’t see any blog posts about this (and yes, I am confident that I bought the correct card). If I hadn’t taken the extra 5 minutes to check the gift card rack because I blindly believed what I read online, then I wouldn’t have been able to get a Redbird of my own.

If you’re still trying to think of a new year’s resolution, perhaps it should be to do some of your own research to develop new MS techniques. A big trend in 2014 was the clamping down on public information–it’s still there, but you have to work much harder to get it. But it’s going to be much rarer to find blog posts with step-by-step instructions.

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