Redbox Won't Take Reader's Money, Bans Credit Card Forever

What can you do when a company bans not you, but your only credit card? John explains that he returned some Redbox movies before his vacation. Then his vacation got really exciting, and his credit card was briefly and accidentally reported stolen. He straightened things out with the credit card company, but Redbox was not so forgiving. He owes the company $15, but they won’t accept his money. Now he’s unable to borrow from Redbox, and their customer service is no help.

Several months ago I rented a Redbox movie. I had planned a vacation with friends to South Carolina as Ohio is rather depressing in the early spring. On the day of the trip I returned my Redbox movie(s) (I honestly can’t remember if it was one or two). The rental was past the first day so the first charge of $1.00 + Tax was already applied to my credit card. However, since I had the movies out over two days the second set of charges had yet to apply. This is where the fun begins.

In South Carolina I conveniently left my credit card/wallet on a counter at a local gas station. The attendant, who was surely just trying to be a good citizen, called the number on the back of my card and reported it stolen, just in case. When I returned the next day after realizing what I had done, I found out what had happened. It took several phone calls and a fax admitting all responsibility, but the card was turned back on. Little did I know that at that time Redbox had attempted to put a charge through on my account. Since the card was reported as stolen, they only ran it once and gave up.

Now fast forward to just a few weeks ago. I was bored and wanted to see a newer movie, so I headed on down to RedBox early one Saturday morning only to find it was malfunctioning. “No problem”, I thought. I would just head down to the next RedBox about a mile down the road. No dice. Same problem. So I called the RedBox customer service line. Turns out that since RedBox was showing that my card was at one point listed as stolen/over the limit/unavailable that I could no longer rent with that card. I said, “Oh I am so sorry about all of this. How much is it and we can just clear the matter up right away.” What I heard next I surely didn’t expect. The kind representative had explained to me how they do not in anyway accept payment over the phone. At all.

Now this struck me as odd, and being an AT&T customer I thought I knew exactly what to do. Call back and see if she was lying. I called back, but lo and behold I got the same story. I owed them money, they won’t rent to me and they do NOT have the ability to accept payment whether it be via telephone, check or mail.

I could go out and get a new credit card as the rep. had stated, but I feel it stupid to get a card just so I can rent a RedBox movie once in a while. I think the charge was only $15 or so. I am at a loss as to what I should do here. Just suck it up and get Netflix? Beats me. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

For the sake of having an extra card, perhaps John can check with his bank and see whether he can have a debit card issued for his checking account–that would give him a way to rent Redbox movies, and an extra method of payment for emergencies, but without affecting his credit score. Otherwise, we’re at a loss. Any ideas?