If you are thinking of sending Amazon gift cards this Christmas, I recommend you think again. ** received a bumper payout totaling $700 for their birthdays a couple of weeks ago–generous gifts from the Blarney connection in the UK. Today, ** (a very cautious shopper) finally made her choices and so we were ready to “proceed to checkout”. I thought I was still okaying the shipping address when I discovered I had inadvertently clicked to complete the order and so had $600 of teen shopping charged to my credit card. I tried to cancel the order. No luck. I tried to email Amazon with the numbers of the gift cards. No luck.
I phoned Amazon and spoke to **, painstakingly bellowing the 14 digits of each gift card down the phone (T as in Tommy, you as in Ukulele, Idiot as in Amazon) to identify the Blarney bounty. ** reversed $200 of my charges, and applied two gift cards, but told me the rest of the gift cards had already been spent. I put down the phone and went back on Amazon to check our recent orders. No sign of a $400 shopping spree. I called back Amazon and spoke to **, spelling out all the card codes again. She agreed I had a balance of $400 and put me on hold while she went away to get some help. Well, she said that was her plan, but actually she cut me off.
By now the Amazon experience had lasted more than an hour. I called back and spoke to **. He agreed that I had a balance of $400, but unfortunately he could not apply it to my order and refund my credit card. “The goods are being shipped from third parties” he said. “nothing we can do about it”. I spoke to his supervisor, **. Nothing she could do about it either. And she was all out of ideas on how she might make it up to me. I suggested a $150 gift card. She agreed to $50 and, after a total of nearly two hours on the phone I was too tired to press the point.
“Never mind” said **. “You can do your Christmas shopping on Amazon”. Well, yes but unfortunately the remaining items on her list (Victoria's Secret bras, a card reader for her new phone, a Mac Pink Friday lipstick) are not stocked by Amazon. “You'll have to do without” I told her. “the credit card money is gone”. The galling thing about all of this is that Amazon, who have provided hopeless customer service, stand to make a total of $1100 from the Blarney family this Christmas. We can't get $400 back from them, and so sooner or later we are going to have to spend it (oh, and **'s generous $50) on things we don't much want. Don't be sucked into making the same mistake.
SEATTLE, WASHINGTON -- I chose Amazon gift cards received as an incentive from my employer. For whatever reason my order charged to my Visa and not my gift cards. I thought, this will be a simple call and we can get it fixed. NOPE.. you have to return the items and start over. That does not seem to make any sense to me. If there is a credit balance on the account why can't the problem just be fixed? Now I will not have the Kindle in time for my vacation. I am really disappointed with this service. I plan to tell everyone I know.
I received a holiday gift certificate for Amazon from my boss in December 2011. I live in Europe and usually order from their European branch in the U.K. but the gift certificate was valid only on the U.S. website. I placed my order using the gift certificate and waited and waited. I never received the package. I sent Amazon an email (to which a customer service representative almost immediately replied) and was told that the shipment was lost. (I personally suspect the Czech Customs Office which holds any package from a non-EU country with a value of more than $30.)
Anyway, I ordered the same two books again. I received an email confirming the order, and I saw that I was being charged for the full amount and that the gift certificate was not being applied to the price. I wrote another email demanding that they cancel the order immediately. Not only did they cancel the order before it was charged to my credit card, they reactivated my gift certificate, refunded the amount for the original order (the amount not covered by the gift certificate), and gave me a "goodwill refund" for my trouble. The refund wasn't much but it did serve its purpose. I will continue to shop at Amazon.
Received a $50 gift card for Amazon. Ordered an item with expedited shipping. Item was never sent and on the last day of expected delivery I filed a follow up. About an hour later I received a ups tracking number for an item and that it was shipped ups ground that day. Problem is not to my registered address or even in my own state.
Contacted customer service again and they admit it was shipped to the wrong address and was told if the item is returned as undeliverable then my gift card will be credited back the amount. If it is not returned or just driver released and left on someone's doorstep then I am out of luck and they have no control of outside vendors. Lesson learned.. never will deal with Amazon ever again.
I have been trying to get credit for returning two unwanted books that were sent to me as gifts. This process started in October. It is now December 22, 2006. I don't have a computer and it is difficult for me to get to a library to use a public computer. They don't leave a number for you to call. I had never returned anything to Amazon before and didn't know how to do it, let alone what was involved in a gift return.
By the time I was able to let them know about the unwanted book in the only approved way they have for learning about their customers, the 30-day period had gone by and I could not even get a message to them about the return, because the site won't let you fill in the form if your order number is over 30 days out. I actually forget how I sent them an e-mail -- two, if truth be told, before they bothered to respond. It was difficult. Anyway, they eventually agreed to send me a return label. I bought a padded envelope and returned the book, along with a copy of the invoice. That was over three weeks ago.
To date, they insist either that they never got it or that they have it but haven't gotten around to processing the return, and I shouldn't bother them until four weeks have elapsed. By the way, I asked them what rate they charged on the postage due items (book rate, first class, priority?) and they never bothered to answer. Last week, I received another unwanted gift book. This time I was ready for them. I made sure to get a ride to the library. I filled out the return information on line and printed out the return address label. (Ah, it says 'media mail.' So I found out eventually, but no thanks to them.)
I bought another padded envelope, enclosed both the return bar code and the gift invoice, carefully affixed the return address label, and took it to the post office last week. I don't know why I bothered. I didn't expect ever to hear from Amazon again, but today I got an envelope in the mail. They have sold my address to a credit card company. It is something called 'marbles' (hah, just when I was losing mine -- are they mocking me?). I hardly know what to say. So far as I can see, I am $2.00 down on the deal for envelopes. They have the money. They have the books back. They made money from selling my name to a credit card company.
I have written Amazon yet another futile e-mail announcing that, so far as I am concerned, they are 'fair game' (in the Rovean sense) and I will complain about them anywhere, everywhere, at every time. I'm also going to be following this up with the Better Business Bureau (it'll give them a headache, although nothing like the one they've given me). And I think the postal inspectors should investigate them.
After all, they are a big user of the US Mail, and it's a federal offense to use the mails to commit fraud. This has been a real eye-opener for me. I used to use Amazon and was always OK with them. I would never go near them now. There are better alternatives, like Powells.com or anyone you reach via the umbrella BookFinder.com web site.
Your viewers need to be warned of a deceptive practice by Amazon.com with gift certificates. My son received a certificate in the mail from his cousins. We received it in January 2002 as a Christmas gift for Christmas 2001. He had it saved away, and tried to use it in November 2002 - and found he could not use it. I tried to help him and had the same problem, so I began to e-mail Amazon for help.
Unfortunately they kept confusing this certificate with another one I sent my brother (even though I sent them a scanned copy of the certificate) and they actually became somewhat rude, but telling me I needed to contact the sender of the certificate (I was the sender of the one they were addressing!!). When we finally got focused on the proper certificate they said they would not speak to me, but rather could only speak to my minor son. I thought this quite ludicrous and felt they were just trying to put me off.
After working the issue for weeks, they advised us that the certificate expired in December, and it was a shame, but nothing they would do -- they kept my son's $100. I find it amazing that they can do this!! I further find it more amazing that this is not widely known, nor is it stated on the certificate. $100 is a lot of money to my son - as it would be to ANY 14-year old! I wonder how many people would use Amazon for gift certificates if they new that Amazon will keep the money if the certificate is not used in a limited time span.
For what it is worth here a short story, and I do not know how to go further. My son sent me a gift certificate for 300 Dollars. He just got married, then went to Iraq for 13 months. I know they could use the money better as newlyweds. I sent the gift certificate back to him. When he came back from Iraq, he checked his account. Since he deposited the money back in his AMAZON ACCOUNT, yes it was there. Not too long ago, he checked again, GUESS WHAT, the money is gone. The time "expired".
I will go to any length to make sure people will know this, as it is down right "THEFT" in my eyes, but what do I know, I am just one of MANY. But one thing I did learn, ONE PERSON CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE. Thanks for listening.
Amazon badly screwed up an order of $380 for 16 gift certificates and 3 months later I still don't have a refund. The recipients never got their certificates even though Amazon sent me a response that the order had been placed and shipped. After a month of fighting this battle, I finally got notification (via email because you can't talk to anyone there) that the order would be canceled, so I purchased different certificates at Barnes and Noble. The next day, the recipients then got their Amazon certificates. I've been fighting this battle for 3 months now and no refund.
LESSON: NEVER buy from a company without the guts to list their customer support phone number.
This is the second year I have had trouble with Amazon gift certificates. Last year it took forever to use the gift certificate given to me by my sister, but I thought it was some kind of isolated incident. This year, my mother-in-law sent my husband me a gift certificate, but we got nothing from Amazon. My husband emailed Amazon and they responded with an email saying "Here's your $20.00 gift certificate". The problem? She bought a gift certificate for $45.00.