American Express Gift Cards / card activation

Diamond Bar, CA, United States Review updated:

I bought a $50 American Express gift card from CVS in Diamond Bar for my brother-in-laws birthday. Three days later he tried using the card and it was declined at three places. Turns out although the receipt claimed the card was activated it was not and contained a balance of $0 not $50 that was charged as well as a fee of $4.95. I called AMEX customer service, they told me to fax over copies of the receipt of purchase, front and back of card, it's packaging and my state issued ID. I had this problem happen months ago and CVS called AMEX and resolved the problem within minutes and CVS issued me a new card in store. Now CVS has a "new policy" with AMEX and customers MUST go through AMEX exclusively. I think I'm getting the run around as I've read has happened to MANY other unsuspecting customers. I think a class action lawsuit may be in order! As well, if I don't get satisfaction from AMEX I will see if the local Los Angeles TV news stations want to hear the story of the big card company AGAIN ripping off the hard working consumers!

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  • Mi
      5th of Jan, 2009

    Steer clear of Amex prepaid gift cards. Gift cash instead and save yourself the headaches.

    I was given 3 Amex prepaid gift cards as a holiday present ($500, $50, $25). First, I called the toll-free number on the back of the Amex card to verify the full amounts were available - - they were.

    Surprisingly, few retail stores in my NYC area would accept Amex gift cards. I should have gotten the hint then, but I forged on innocently.

    A Nordstrom department store accepted my Amex gift cards, however the clerk was having such a hard time exchanging the Amex cards for Nordstrom gift cards (standard procedure?), that she became frustrated.

    After 5 minutes of trying without success, the clerk asked me how I was going to pay, then dismissed me and told me to go to customer service. At that point, I started getting very embarrassed.

    Next, I discovered that when the clerk swiped my cards to then cancelled my purchase, the cards were showing $0 balance.

    No merchandise. No money on my Amex gift cards, and no Nordstrom gift card.


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  • Sc
      11th of May, 2009

    Same thine happened to me. I think it would be a good idea to have a class action suit. Please contact me [protected]

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  • Ja
      10th of Jun, 2009

    We opened an American Express Costco Card 2 months ago. It was cancelled 2 months later, due to our 'credit report'. How much could it have changed in 2 months? We have no late fees, no problem areas and no understanding of what happened. I am relieved to hear this is a pervasive problem as I have been searching for what happened. And their closure of our account will do more to hurt our credit than anything they could have found. A class action suit is in order. Portland, Oregon

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  • Jo
      2nd of Aug, 2009

    I have $100 X 3 American express gift cards( $300 total) not activated. When I called American express, I got an Indian call center that implied that I stole the cards and said I was lying when I said they had a problem with their computer system.

    When the activation instruction were followed, the balance on the cards were check online before they were fully activated which caused their system never to active the cards.

    Now, it has been days since the activation and the cards have zero balance on them.

    Why can't American express fix their computer systems? My guess is because it is run by these Indian call centers who are like mindless robots which follow a script and have no ability to look into problems that fall outside their script.

    Stay far far away from these cards or else American express will end up stealing your money.

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  • Wo
      9th of Oct, 2010

    I just bought a $25.00 Amex gift card for my daughter so she could buy a game online five dollar change. The Web sight had a picture of the Amex card on its page. The card would not work and when I called the help desk I got some Indian guy with plenty of excuses. After waiting two hours and trying repeatability still no game. Now I have to wait until Monday after 7AM to call them back and my daughter is crying she wants to play her game. I want a full refund and I have Monday off so I have all day to spend on the phone. I will never buy a AMEX gift card again and I will tell everyone I know to stay away too. Who else can we call to complain about them?

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  • Do
      16th of Mar, 2011
    American Express Gift Cards - Inactive!
    American Express
    United States

    I bought $2000 worth of American Express in 8 gift cards to give to customers to create goodwill. 1 card I had not yet given out. One customer called me to tell me her card was not working. I had Amex check the other card I still had and found out that one also was not activated, even though I have the activation receipt! The Gift Card Resolution team was willing to send me a replacement for the 2 non-working cards I had in my possession. Now I am left with going back to my customers and asking for those cards back. More than likely, they tried to use the cards, said a few choice words about me and just discarded the non-working cards. Now to replace them and try and minimize the bad-will this has created, I will be taking a loss of another $1600. Amex won't replace the cards from the receipt or even credit me back the processing fee unless I can produce the non-working cards from my customers. DO NOT BUY Amex gift cards to give to anyone you actually like, or you could have your gift blow up in your face like this has for me!!

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