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Simon Mall Gift Cards / I think this is a scam!

1 United States Review updated:

Simon Mall Gift Cards have lots of no's and very few yes'. The gift giver pays a fee up front. If you don't use it for any reason in 6 months after purchase date. Then they charge you $2.50 a month for "administrative fees" and a re-issue charge of $7.50 (which I think I just saw went up to $12.50)- if you card expires without using it.

I called and asked if there was any way they could reduce the fees since I had some major medical problems and my card had expired without using it. I lost $35 to fees. They wouldn't budge. I even asked if we could split the $35 because I had miss-read and thought you had 6 months after it expired to use it without penalty.

I think this is a scam. The buyer thinks they are giving a gift of $$XX and it doesn't always work out that way. I know there are time in life that you physically can't go out and purchase things and/or don't care if you can. This supposedly great gift idea falls flat for elderly or house bound people who may not have an idea on what to use it on.

I also had trouble when I was re-issued a card, getting a merchant to use it. They kept showing me that the card was declined when it had a balance on it.

I contacted the state's attorney general but they it is a legal contract between the buyer and the seller. It needs to be changed in the legislature. I just think the fees are too high when they are paid up front plus a profit to buy the card.

Mh

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  • Be
      13th of Oct, 2006
    0 Votes

    Corporate Headquarters
    Simon Property Group, Inc.
    225 West Washington Street
    Indianapolis, Indiana 46204
    (317) 636-1600
    October 12, 2006
    To Simon Property Group Management
    I am absolutely disgusted with your company division of SIMON CARDS. I have neither been treated so poorly as a consumer nor have been so frustrated!

    I ordered a gift card online on Sept 24. I received an email stating that it would take 48 hours and 3-5 business days to receive this gift card. Obviously, as stated it was a gift and typically gifts come with a definitive deadline.

    When the card did not arrive for my nephew’s birthday on October 5, I was disappointed.
    By October 11, I called the customer service number. This is where my frustration began.
    The website requires your card number. I don’t have a card yet. That is the problem.
    The phone number requires a card number. I don’t have a card yet. That is the problem.

    After several different attempts, out of sheer frustration, I used the prompt as if I was a merchant so that I would be able to talk to a customer service agent.

    On October 11, I spoke to a gentleman with an accent. Comprehension of statements was strained, but we were able to communicate. I was told by this gentleman to give the card another 24 hours to be delivered DESPITE the fact that the website, after ordering, informed me that the card should be delivered by October 2; DESPITE the fact that my email verification letter told me that it should take only 48 hours processing time and 3-5 delivery days. I asked what would happen if the card did not appear and was told I would get a refund! I didn’t want a refund, I wanted a birthday present! How can a company not try to keep their money? Why didn’t they offer to send a new card out right away and make me happy?

    I called back the following day on October 12 and spoke to several gentlemen, all with a similar accent and all giving the exact same robotic answer for the most part. I asked for a supervisor and was encouraged to give all the information to the first CS, “Zach”. I gave all of the information to Zach who could do nothing but tell me that I should wait another day for the card to arrive.

    I asked for his supervisor again and was given another man, to which I did not take his name. He told me that I should wait until Monday, October 16. If I was to be issued a new card, it would not be mailed until Monday, so I might as well wait. I kept trying to make these men understand that YOU have my money and I have nothing. I am tired of waiting; I wanted action. They continued to treat me in a monotone voice and repeating that they could either give me a refund, wait it out, or be issued another card, but it would take 10-14 business days to arrive. They insisted that these cards take 10-14 days and I insisted that my email specifically states, as does the website that it takes 3-5 business days.

    When I was “reprimanded” for not purchasing a expedited delivery, I asked for a refund.
    Why would I pay $20 for faster shipping when I had already planned 2 weeks in advance? Why was I being reprimand for a problem that was out of my control?

    They would not send me an email stating that a refund would be issued. They would not send me a letter stating a refund would be issued AND I had to give them my credit card number to them again!

    I asked for another supervisor. This time I spoke with “Mark”. Mark, too, could not help me out in any way that was appropriate. However, he did give me information that no one else had given. The card had been mailed out on September 26! With this information, to me it was either lost or stolen.
    Mark too “reprimanded” me for not purchasing expedited delivery because it could be traced. My response was WHY would I pay extra money for a card that has to be validated from the owner’s phone number? Isn’t that a safety net in itself? WHY would I add $20 dollar fee to an already outrageous fee of $5.00 to use a non re-loadable gift card?

    You all win. I gave my credit card over the phone for a full refund. However, I was told by Mark that I will not be given anything in writing that proves I am to receive a refund.

    I have nothing for my nephew’s birthday 1000 miles away and a week late.

    I have to wait for 10 days to receive a refund on my credit card according to your CS agents.

    I asked Mark to please take my grievances to his superiors…I doubt if he does and I truly doubt if this letter makes a difference. But if your company cares about its reputation, you will make sure that the information on your website and the information from your CS agents correspond and that the customer is given correct information at the time of purchase.

    • Why do the CS agents quote 10-14 business days when the website and the email quote 3-5?
    • Why didn’t someone look up to see how long the card has been floating in the USPS system? Perhaps that would have convinced the CS agents that truly something unsavory had happened to this card?
    • Why didn’t your company take full responsibility for the problem and issue a new one without question?
    • Why did I have to do all of the work? Why was I made to wait extra days?
    • Why is there not a way to appease upset customers besides offer a refund?
    • Why wasn’t I offered some form of compensation for my trouble?
    • If a card is lost or stolen, why isn’t there a direct CS line for that purpose?
    • Why can’t you dial directly to CS or email for a lost card without having to input a card number?
    Isn’t that one of the reasons we purchase gift cards with an added fee? We want that added security of knowing we could stop the card from being used.

    Your company or the company that you pay to handle your gift card processing doesn’t provide any of that. What they do provide are customer service agents with limited English proficiency, monotone, robotic answers and no solutions to problems. You’ve had my money for 3 weeks, earning interest on it and will continue until my refund is processed. I’m out money and a gift for my nephew from my sister and myself. I convinced my sister that we should go in on this gift and now I get to call long distance and tell her that we have to start over from scratch AND its two weeks late.

    I hope that my disgust is evident throughout this email. To have Simon Mall Management associated with this kind of poor treatment of customers is not good for business and I plan to make sure that my experience with your gift card website/customer service is well documented.

  • Ga
      16th of Dec, 2007
    0 Votes

    As of sunday december 16, 2007, the simon website is being very dis-responsive, i cant make my transaction, i have to activate it online through an unresponsive website, so i can make my online purchase (wich btw) the simon card gets fined 1 dollar, and refunded 1 dollar to make sure that the card is valaid. The refund takes several business days, I am now short 1 dollar of my purchase, thank you, simon gift card.

    Im an angry little man right now.

  • Jo
      27th of Dec, 2007
    0 Votes

    I couldn't agree more with Beth. I am going through the exact same thing with this company. It's amazing how similar our stories are. I too have a receipt stating 3-5 days but the people they have answering the phone from India or Pakistan or wherever they are, have a totally different story! They continually say 10-14 days. I told them they should check the companies website and see what is on there. Of course they are not going to.

    Unfortunately I had ordered 3 gift cards totaling over 300.00. The website stated they would be delivered by December 21st. It is now December 27th and not one card has arrived. Three Christmas gifts are late. I am beginning to wonder if I will ever get this resolved. I have made 3 different calls and the last call told me to wait until this weekend. I'm not hopeful.

    It is like they make it as difficult as possible to communicate with them in hopes you will give up.

    I will report this to the Better Business Bureau and will tell everyone I know to never never use or order a Simon gift card. It is a huge ripoff!!

  • Pa
      31st of Dec, 2007
    0 Votes

    I too think those cards are as far from the giving season as you can get, not only are you paying for the gift you are paying for the stupid piece of plastic just so the banks can make more money, that is terrible. So in other words for a $100.00 gift you are really paying 102.50 which the receiver still only gets $100.00 and only if they follow all the rules because even that keeps reducing in amount every so many months HO HO HO! But the only way we can stop it is to tell people that we please do not want gift cards and never buy them ourselves, go to a bank get a nice crisp new bill wrap it in a nice little box and the receiver never has a problem nor do you! JUST EVERYONE STOP USING THESE CARDS THAT 's THE ONLY WAY WE CAN STOP THEM FROM SELLING THEM. Belive me after the holidays when we're out and about we hear people at resturants, waiting in lobby's and just people you bump into tell awful experinces with these cards but we, enable the banks to keep making and selling them by buying them, just don't and get the word out to others who buy these for you to please just give cash or a hug which I'd rather have than a gift card. When I buy a train at toysrus they don't charge me $2.50 because I shop at their store and spent my money with them instead of buying it at a different store. If toysrus did charge me $2.50 just to shop at their store I'd hope that I would be smart enough to go to a different store with no charge for shopping there. It may seem cold to give cash but to me it's more disgusting to know the gift you purchased for me the bank kept $2.50 of it and has the power to even keep more of it as the months go buy, all those gift cards that's alot of two dollars and fifty cents they are collecting what happened to the free mall gift cards that were so much nicer and easy to deal with lets go back there. But I'm sure we won't the mall owners and banks can't make money on them and would that really be a gift for them, let them get their own gifts not $2.50 off all our gifts. Again just stop buying the cards.

  • Pa
      31st of Dec, 2007
    0 Votes

    Something I wanted to add in our state at the grocery store you can get free gift cards for alot of stores and food places, plus you get rewarded with fuel perks for buying at their place and spending your money with them, see you are rewarded for loyalty which is the exact opposite of what happens when you pay to get a gift card at the malls they are taking our money twice, so just lets all start thinking of different ways of giving our family and friends holiday gifts other than those awful cards from the malls where they are really only thinking of themselves not the spirit of giving. I've had two problems loosing money etc. and the awful customer service they provide for us, but I just don't even want to address that, we know lets just get smart and stop paying for something we can get for free somewhere else.

  • Be
      13th of Jan, 2008
    0 Votes

    I am going through the same problem with Simon. We got 3 "free" $25 Simon giftaccounts. These accounts can only be used over the phone and the internet. Well, the problem we have run into is that most places do not understand the concept of these especially since it is not for the full amount you can only purchase things for exactly $25, but you can still have problems using the cards. How that is the business usually will put a pending transaction on there for $1 to see if the account is good, well at this point all that is left on the account is $24, so the business does not think the card has enough on it. So instead we decided to turn these cards into plastic accounts. We did this on Dec 16, 2007. I just called Simon today to see where they were because they should have been here by now. After 20 minutes of the woman trying to figure out what I was saying and me trying to figure out what the heck she was saying she was able to pull up the accounts. She stated that the cards were sent out on Dec 22, 2007. I told her obviously they had been lost in the mail because we had no received them. She told me I needed to wait even longer for the cards. I stated to her that is had already been 3 weeks. She still gave me the same answer. We are figuring that we will not receive those cards. At least for us we did not pay for these. Oh also we lost $5.95 per account to convert them to plastic cards. Just a warning to all: DO NOT BUY THIS CARDS THEY ARE A WASTE OF MONEY!

  • Mi
      14th of Jan, 2008
    0 Votes

    Simon gives you a pamplet to read when you purchase the gift card (which takes about a whole 5 minutes out of your life to read). Probably a good idea to read it shortly after you receive the card. Yeah, the fees are ridiculous but it's perfectly clear what you are getting yourself into when you are given the card.

  • Ji
      4th of May, 2008
    0 Votes

    Taking a monthly fee off a card plus the initial start up fees too? Does everyone in this Visa Debit Card Company wear a mask when they do such an underhanded business? Zeroing out a card by constantly draining it monthly is down right thievery.I promise in my life I will never ever buy another gift card from any major card company. I will tell all my friends and familt to not buy them as well. It's a form of extortion that is being commited to the consumer once again.

  • Lo
      9th of Jun, 2008
    0 Votes

    I AGREE YOU HAVE A VERY POOR POLICY AND I RECIEVED THIS CARD AS A GIFT . WHEN I TRIED TO MAKE A PURCHASE IN THE GAS STATION YOU CARD WAS CONSTANTLY REJECTED SO I GOT NO GAS ...BUT YOUR COMPANY DID DEDUCT $75.00 ON HOLD FROM MY GIFT FOR NO REASON...YOU SHOULD TELL THAT WHEN PEOPLE PURCHASE THE CARD THAT YOU RIP PEOPLE OFF I NOW HAVE TO WAIT 5 DAYS TO SEE IF IT IS CREDITED TO MY CARD OR WHAT DO I DO I CALL CUST. SERVICE AND YOU CANT UNDERSTAND THE PEOPLE THE CONNECTION IS VERY BAD AND THE ACCENTS ARE UNBELIVEABLE. HELP HELP EITHER FIX THE PROBLEMS OR GO OUT OF BUSINESS
    THANK YOU

  • Da
      7th of Aug, 2008
    0 Votes

    I WORK FOR A COMPANY THAT BUYS THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS WORTH OF SIMON GIFT CARDS FROM THE MALL KIOSK IN OUR CITY AND WE HAVE BEEN RECEIVING SOME STRANGE COMPLAINTS AS WELL. EACH CARD IS WORTH 50 DOLLARS BUT WE KEEP GETTING RANDOM COMPLAINTS OF 35 DOLLARS, 47 DOLLARS ETC AS THE BEGINNING BALANCE. THESE PEOPLE ARE RIPPING US OFF ON BULK ORDERS AND WE HAVE STOPPED ORDERING THEM IN BULK. I HAVE TAKEN A BRAND NEW CARD AND TRIED TO CHECK THE BALANCE ON THE PHONE AND I HAVE BEEN TOLD "THIS CARD IS NOT ACTIVATED" OR "ZERO BALANCE" YET WHEN YOU CHECK THE INTERNET SITE THE CARD IS LOADED AND READY TO GO. THE CUSTOMER SERVICE "INDIAN ACCENTS?' DEPARTMENT IS A JOKE. THEY CAN BARELY SPEAK THE LANGUAGE, SO THEY STICK TO THE "PARTY LINE" AND PARROT QUOTE. AS FAR AS BUYING GAS? GO TO THE CLERK INSIDE THE STORE AND RUN IT AS CREDIT. DON'T STICK THE CARD INTO THE PUMP IT WILL EMPTY THE TOTAL BALANCE OF THE CARD, EVEN IF YOU JUST ORDER 5 DOLLARS IN GAS. THESE CARDS ARE A JOKE AND NOT WORTH THE EFFORT AND I WOULD SUGGEST NEVER ORDERING THEM ONLINE.

  • Be
      15th of Aug, 2008
    0 Votes

    I can understand all of your complaints re: Simon Mall. I had my business at 2 malls for 4 years and all I had to deal with was the lack of integrity of their management team at their Pheasant Lane Mall in NH as well as the Burlington Mall in MA. They obviously are only interested in how to screw their customers as well as screw their leasees.
    If anyone is interested in starting a business at any Simon Mall, you are absolutely crazy!

  • Pa
      26th of Nov, 2008
    0 Votes

    I understand that these are high fees
    but if you go to the mall they give you a whole year to use it
    There are directions on how to use it
    The card only cost two dollars to buy to begin with
    and yes it is 15 dollars to renew it but you shouldn't of let it expire like that
    You signed the contract and it was your own fault
    If you can't handle the simon gift card then get a real one
    Oh and with the whole misreading thing...
    how's that their fault? Maybe you should've asked if you were unsure
    Honestly I think you were just stupid and next time you should read harder and think about what your getting yourself into :]

  • Su
      6th of Mar, 2009
    0 Votes

    I have had no problem with Simon gift cards.If you find that you won't be able to use, give it to someone or pay a bill or buy something on line. My only problem is having a very small balance. If you know the balance, take it with you to the grocery store. Most grocery st ores will let you use them.

  • Sa
      14th of Apr, 2009
    0 Votes

    Worst customer service!!! Placed on hold for nearly 20 minutes...card never received...had to wait another 10-14 days for replacement!! BAD BUSINESS!

  • Nn
      30th of Nov, 2010
    0 Votes

    What a pain in the @ss. I've made three attempts to order a Simon gift card online (before finding this thread), each time going through the long process of inputting the recipient's name, writing out my accompanying e-card message, adding all my billing details, etc.---only to get a message upon submission that online ordering is not available at this time and simultaneously that an error occurred while processing my order (confounding to me how it could be both). I wrote Customer Service an e-mail to clarify whether it was a website problem or an issue on my end and the response I received was absolutely asinine:

    "Thank you for contacting Simon Customer Service,
    We are not experiencing technical problems with our website but unfortunately, processing guidelines will not allow us process your order at this time.

    Thank you,
    Simon Customer Service"

    No explanation of what processing guidelines were at issue or, more importantly, WHEN they WOULD be able to process the order. What am I supposed to do with this kind of non-response? So of course I wrote back demanding a more informative explanation and perhaps a SUGGESTION of how to go about ordering the card. Luckily, I got a more competent representative this time who apologized for my frustration (implicitly acknowledging the uselessness of their previous response) and said:

    "Unfortunately, American Express has denied your order due to their processing guidelines. You are welcome to call them at 1800-331-5479 until you reach a person to get a more detailed answer from someone in the Risk Department."

    After reading this thread, I'd rather just forget it and buy a generic card from my neighborhood CVS. I appreciate the more helpful customer service that I eventually received, but it's just a bit too little too late.

  • Rh
      7th of Jun, 2016
    0 Votes
    Simon Mall Gift Cards - Expirations
    United States

    I have 2 Simon Mall gift cards dated June of 2005 which I misplaced and recently found. One is for 100.00 and the other for 50.00. Under the info about expired gift cards it states that there is a 7.50 reactivation fee but after speaking with customer service, I am ONLY entitled to NOTHING! Cash doesn't expire, why should your gift expire? I was also put on hold for 13 minutes when speaking with your customer service department. I lost my money and my time.

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