Visa VanillaCard Allowed Overcharge

J Review updated:

My friend gave me a $25 Visa Vanilla gift card for my birthday. I was making a purchase for approx $55 and asked the merchant to put the gift card toward the purchase. When she put it through, it paid for the entire purchase. The next day I went online to check the balance as I was a little befuddled as to why it would have paid for the whole amount when it was clearly only a $25 card. My card still showed a $25 balance. Thinking there was a mistake made by the store (it was out of state, not someplace I could easily get back to), I decided to use up the $25 still showing as my balance and throw it away. Now all the charges are showing up on the card. My question is: Who do I pay, and how do they know who the heck I am? I made my last purchase on, so they could feasibly trace me if they really wanted to, but if I hadn't done that, how could they possibly find me to bill me?? What might the repurcussions be if I don't do anything? I'm inclined to just pay off the $53 I owe and be done with it as I don't want them finding me in 6 years and telling me I now owe them $600 due to some crazy interest rate. Any feedback or advice? Thanks!


  • F
      Nov 23, 2009

    Funny you should post this. The same thing happened to me with a bank of america gift card. I received a small award at work ($25) and had to redeem the card at on line. I had to submit personal information to get the card mailed to me. When I used the card and it covered all charges, I was equally suprised. I even told the casheir that I had to owe a balance, they card was not good for the entire amount. She assured me there was no additonal charge and she could not charge me the difference that I thought I owed because there was no balance due. I thought I would get a bill in the mail for the balance. This was at the end of October. Strangely enough, I have a regular BOA card that I only use for balance transfers (never new purchases) and the charges showed up on my CC statement. You can imagine that I was a little more than irritated. My CC company played dumb and said it was possible, and proceeded to tell me everything I needed to do to correct the issue. Gues what, they never even credited me the $25 the card was worth. I wonder if your friends card was charged as well.

    0 Votes
  • S
      Sep 17, 2010

    Having the same problem now, I recieved a $25vanilla visa card for Christmas last year and I put the card on my iTunes with 6 dollars left on it just so I could buy a few songs with the remaining balance...I accidentally bought a whole cd which was 12 dollars and it let me purchase the whole thing with only 6 bucks on the card.So my question is? Will I be billed for this overage even though they have no clue who I am?Or will iTunes bill me?

    +2 Votes
  • N
      Sep 09, 2012

    I'm having the same issue right now. I have several Visa gift cards and they all look the same. I accidentally handed the cashier the wrong one, but the charge went through seamlessly. I didn't realize it was the wrong card until I checked the balances online. Long story short, I have a negative balance of about $14. I have no issue paying that, hell I'd like to stick it on another gift card, but I will never pay a fee for overcharging (if they exist) because the card should have been declined in the first place. I'm curious as to whether or not Visa actually does (or can do) anything about this. They 'say' on their website that gift card users are responsible if there are any overcharges, but they don't say what action will be taken or how to pay those overcharges, or how they'd even know who to contact LOL. I wonder if its some sort of technical oversight- my Vanilla Visa gift card had no issue being declined.

    They have my info (which can easily be changed) because I registered it to use it for online purchases, but how would they even know that I was the one to charge it??? What if I'd thrown it in the trash and some homeless person had picked it up and used it? So my point, is that if Visa cannot ensure that their cards are properly declined when there isn't enough money on the card, then how can we as consumers be protected when we dispose of them if it they can be used infinitely and we are considered responsible? I might call them to inquire about the situation, but I don't think they'll actually do anything about it. Not for a few bucks- maybe if I'd charged thousands of dollars they might notice, but not less than twenty. This is just my opinion of course, but of all the people's comments I found online who are asking the same questions as the poster, NOT A SINGLE ONE has admitted to ever actually receiving a bill for gift card overcharges- I'm talking about from the Visa gift card people, not the vendor.

    +1 Votes
  • N
      Sep 11, 2012

    UPDATE to my previous entry: I called the Visa gift card people and the person I talked to told me that it was not my responsibility and that I shouldn't worry about the overcharge. He told me that I can throw away my card and that I am not liable because the vendor should not have charged it- infering that it was an issue with the vendor's system. Just FYI for those that are wondering about this lol.

    +4 Votes

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