Have You Had Trouble Using Best Buy Gift Cards Online?

In recent days, we’ve received numerous complaints from people who attempted to use Best Buy gift cards to make purchases on the store’s website, only to end up frustrated and trapped in BB’s byzantine customer service maze.

Here’s one such complaint from Michael, who attempted to place an order at BestBuy.com using a gift card. Instead of receiving a confirmation screen, he was kicked back to the payment information screen where his order had not been credited with the gift card money, even though his card now showed a zero balance:

Called Best Buy’s customer service department and was told it was a known issue and to wait 30 minutes for my funds to be refunded back to my card automatically. After an hour they were still not there so I called back to open a claim as instructed. Alas the gift card department was now closed.

Out of curiosity, Michael looked at the customer service forums on BestBuy.com and found similar complaints like this one and this one and this one.

When reached by Consumerist for comment, a company rep replied:

We had a few issues with online gift card redemption earlier in the week but we believe these issues are resolved. We apologize for any inconvenience people may have had as they were tried to redeem their gift cards for some exciting new technology. It was an unexpected glitch and we know it was frustrating for some customers.

We’d like to know if more of you have experienced or are continuing to experience this problem.

Comments

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  1. Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

    If you’re going to use moronic PR marketing speak (don’t) at least use proper grammar.

    “…as they were tried to redeem their gift cards for some exciting new technology.”

    Good lord, I hate you BBY.

    • Stickdude says:

      And I like the “unexpected glitch” part.

      Good to know it wasn’t an expected glitch.

    • leprechaunshawn says:

      Where in the article does it say that was a written reply from Best Buy? It is entirely possible that “when reached by Consumerist” means when contacted via telephone. It’s very possible that reply was verbal and the author of this post spelled a word correctly but used it in the wrong context. We all know the “editing” here is not always very high caliber!!

  2. BannedInBrittan says:

    I went to use some at a store on the day after Christmas and ran into an issue where the system seemed over burdened and took a while to authorize it. No big deal though… had to try it twice and worked the second time without an issue. Just seems like they had more gift card authorization requests than expected.

  3. Wang_Chung_Tonight says:

    i had been given a $50 BB gift card years ago from my father.

    I went to use it and bought a $10 cd. The girl cashier (BB employee) asked if I wanted to use the rest of it. I looked at her like she was crazy and said “of course”. She gave me the card and I left.

    Went to use the card two weeks later and it had $4.83 on it. She had written down the number and bought things for herself.

    Moral of the story-just give cash.

    • SabreDC says:

      Are you sure that funds didn’t expire (back before it was unlawful) due to non use? Maybe when you went to Best Buy originally, there was only $14.83. Not too long ago, companies were allowed to deduct x% off the card each year that it wasn’t used.

      What proof do you have that the cashier wrote the number down and used it?

      • hills says:

        I agree – that sounds much more plausible – and is probably why the cashier asked if he wanted to keep it (since there was less than $5 less)…

      • eddieck says:

        Some gift cards now have an account history site where you can see all charges. I know McDonald’s does and I’m pretty sure Starbucks does as well. That would answer the question of whether it was fraud or inactivity fees, but since this was years ago I doubt it’s possible to find out now.

    • 99 1/2 Days says:

      I had a Starbuck’s employee steal the remainder of my giftcard once. I know better than to use one in the drive-thru now…

  4. Rebecca K-S says:

    Interesting image choice.

  5. Brunette Bookworm says:

    Maybe some people didn’t get the gift cards with money on them. We had a person here in town stealing them…

    http://www.nwitimes.com/news/local/porter/valparaiso/article_a458c588-5b98-5e33-a5e4-9b1c9ea4424a.html

    I wonder if that happened to some of these other people and that’s why gift cards showed a $0 balance. Did all these people verify that the money was actually on the gift cards when they went to use them?

  6. Stupidone0 says:

    I bought a $50 iTunes gift card (shame on me, I know) for $40 using a gift card last week. Guess I was lucky to avoid any issues.

    • TasteyCat says:

      I stopped using iTunes when I found out how much more expensive they were than Amazon, but $40 for $50 may make it worthwhile.

  7. TasteyCat says:

    I received a $150 Best Buy gift card when I bought furniture, and I have since only found a reason to use it once (luckily, it does not expire or have any fees). I was gonna buy a Wii on Black Friday, but they sold out online, so I just got the same deal from Amazon instead, and then eventually I opted to just make one small purchase. I’d have bought more stuff, but their shipping prices on DVD’s are unacceptable.

    As to the actual question posed, no, I did not have any trouble.

  8. davidsco says:

    Oh, but their CEO DOES give you a nice recorded holiday greeting when you call

  9. Dhornet7 says:

    Wow, I am glad they were out of Apple Tv’s. Otherwise I might have gotten caught in this mess

  10. John from Huntersville says:

    I’ve used three of them over the past couple years (one about a week ago). I’ve never had a problem ordering online with them.

  11. homehome says:

    Have used them for 10 years, never had a problem.

  12. Gladeye says:

    Where’s the competition? I always feel guilty when I purchase anything at Best Buy. I feel dirty when I do.

  13. tr41nwr3ck says:

    Friends don’t let friends give them BBY gift cards.

    Yep, I’ve seen better buys, actually!

  14. gman863 says:

    Given their high prices, I have trouble buying anything from Best Buy – online or in person.

  15. MeowMaximus says:

    Receiving a Worst Buy Gift card is someone’s way of saying “I Hate You”. Just throw the damn thing away, it’s useless.

  16. Yadiel says:

    My order with a gift card went through but BB is holding my order hostage. The status never changes from Order line status is not available.”