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Laddiegirl
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎01-19-2012
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Re: Gift card issue...needs to be fixed!

I'm also having an issue.  I added at $25 gift card to my Nook Tablet account a couple of weeks ago (I had an issue with the bankcard I have attached to my Nook account so it's on the way and I added the giftcard so that I could continue to buy books in the meantime).  I bought a book about a week ago on the giftcard which left a balance of $12.01 on the giftcard.  Today I tried buying a book for $9.99 and wouldn't let me, saying that my credit card associated with the account was declined. I'm not sure why it tried to charge my old card since it clearly states on the same screen as the balance of my giftcard, that giftcards are charged first, then a CC is charged any remaining balance.  I even tried buying a $6.99 book and a third try buying a $.99 app just to see and it also wouldn't let me purchase those either.  There is clearly enough on my giftcard to buy those items individually as I attempted. 

 

Also my grandfather has a Nook (first generation) and ONLY uses giftcards to purchase books and has never connected a credit card and has never had an issue so I'm not sure why I'm having this issue.   Otherwise I love my Nook Tablet...I just wish this could be fixed as I'm unable to buy any books till my new bankcard comes (I don't use credit cards so adding another card in the meantime isn't an option for me).

Contributor
Ridiculosity
Posts: 19
Registered: ‎06-01-2011
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Re: Gift card issue...needs to be fixed!

I had a similar issue about a year ago.  I put a gift card on my account, and bought a book (Drop City, for those curious folks) and it charged directly to my debit card.  I called and a helpful person fixed it immediately, but it took 6 days until my account reflected the change, which meant I couldn't buy anything for 6 days.

 

I had a much more annoying thing happen after Christmas this year.  I got a pile of gift cards and put 3 of them in my account, like normal.  Then I started shopping.  Once the balance on a card got too low to cover the entire cost of a book, the system just went to my other cards, until I was left with 3 gift cards each with a balance less than $2.  I ended up with a $3 gift card credit in my account spread over 3 gift cards, which meant that I couldn't buy anything without paying out of pocket despite the fact that I had 3 more gift cards I wanted to use.  I had to delete the cards from my account so I could buy more books.

 

In general I'm getting upset with B&N's Nook systems.  This is just another annoyance on top of the fact that I can't read books in the store anymore, the cafe coupons I used to love are gone, and general support for the damn thing is gone and I haven't even had it for a year.  On top of that, I can't add books to my wishlist from the website and I have to do it manually for each book I want to add.  I could go on and on about how I feel like the reasons I bought a Nook aren't true anymore, but this isn't the proper place.  Let's just say B&N needs to get their act together on many fronts, their gift card system being one of them.

Doug_Pardee
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Valid credit card is required even if billing to a gift card

[ Edited ]

Laddiegirl wrote:

 

Today I tried buying a book for $9.99 and wouldn't let me, saying that my credit card associated with the account was declined. I'm not sure why it tried to charge my old card since it clearly states on the same screen as the balance of my giftcard, that giftcards are charged first, then a CC is charged any remaining balance.


You always have to have a valid credit card on file. B&N's copy-protection system uses the credit-card number to generate the encryption key.

 

Your gift card will be billed, not the credit card. But without the credit card, you can't download the e-book so B&N won't let you buy it.

 

Simply update your credit card information, and you'll be good to go.

 

New User
Laddiegirl
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎01-19-2012
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Re: Valid credit card is required even if billing to a gift card

Well that just isn't a good policy.  What about the customers who intend to only purchase books with giftcards?  As shown in this thread, many times the system defaults and charges the card in lieu of giftcards with seeming regularity.  This is a really poor policy on the part of Barnes & Noble.  I'm now stuck with the inablity to purchase ANY books or apps until my new bankcard arrives...which with how banks run these days is who knows when.  I am not a happy customer at all.

Distinguished Scribe
Ya_Ya
Posts: 3,334
Registered: ‎09-29-2010
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Re: Valid credit card is required even if billing to a gift card


Laddiegirl wrote:

Well that just isn't a good policy.  What about the customers who intend to only purchase books with giftcards? ...This is a really poor policy on the part of Barnes & Noble.  ...  I am not a happy customer at all.


Every.other.ebook.seller works the way you want.  Go with one of their products.


Some of us prefer B&N's flexibility; it's good to have options.  Use them.

Distinguished Bibliophile
RHWright
Posts: 1,619
Registered: ‎10-21-2009
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Re: Valid credit card is required even if billing to a gift card

While I have no problem with having a default credit card on file, I can see how some may have a problem with it. There should be some provision for setting up accounts with just gift cards. (It would have made my life easier when I set up my daughter's account.)

 

Even if it's just a way to have the valid CC# on file for DRM purposes, but a block in the system that prevents any actual charges to it? If there are no GCs or not enough balance it then rejects the sale.

 

This of course wouldn't help those who absolutely, under no circumstances, want that info anywhere on file, but for those that it's more about avoiding unexpected charges it would be a good first step.

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Ya_Ya
Posts: 3,334
Registered: ‎09-29-2010
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Re: Valid credit card is required even if billing to a gift card


RHWright wrote:

 

 

Even if it's just a way to have the valid CC# on file for DRM purposes, but a block in the system that prevents any actual charges to it? If there are no GCs or not enough balance it then rejects the sale.


This seems reasonable and it seems as if it should be doable.


But for those who don't want their credit cards stored at B&N, under any circumstances, my thought process stands.  Every.other.ebookseller allows purchases with no default credit card.  Perhaps one of those is more suited to those users.

New User
HiJinxs
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎08-10-2011
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Re: Gift card issue...needs to be fixed!

I am having the same problem. In February, I received a $50 gift card for my birthday and immediately started using it. I made three purchases and realized that small amounts of money were being withdrawn from my checking account.  I called B&N and spoke to a supervisor who guaranteed that my money would be returned to my account in a week. It has been 10 business days and my money has not been returned.  I contacted my credit union and asked about the transactions and they stated that "Barnes and Noble has obtained the funds from my account and there is no evidence of any activity of a return or a reversal of the charges." As I'm typing this, I am on hold with a B&N customer service rep.  It's been 33 minutes and 50 seconds and counting.  I received another $50 gift card for Valentine's day but I haven't added to my B&N account.  I'm going to wait to see if B&N can figure out what is going on before I shop. I'm glad to hear that my issue is not an isolated incident.  B&N needs to understand that the way they are processing debit cards is different from how they are processing credit cards. (In the past I had a credit card on my B&N account and never had this problem.) Get it together B&N! I have the same debit card attached to my iTunes and Amazon accounts and NEVER have this problem when using their gift cards!! So, I know it's just B&N's incompetent programmers that are the cause of these and other issues.

New User
Darkstarwulf
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎12-28-2012
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Re: Gift card issue...needs to be fixed!

I am having the same issue I got a gift card for $25 and I want a book that is onle about $8 and my Debit has no money on it right now cause it is a prepaid but when I go to buy a book it tells me my debit is denied. Of course it is, and why should that effect my buying the book? I have no issue with them having my card on file and such but I would like to get the books I want with the gift card I was given for Christmas...not spend my own money on them and have a semi useless card. That is highly upsetting... Plus I will be getting another card soon and that means I will have nothing I can get cause the cards are useless when they want to charge my debit card only... :smileysad:

Wordsmith
tmr4
Posts: 268
Registered: ‎05-08-2010
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Re: Gift card issue...needs to be fixed!

[ Edited ]
You have to have a valid credit card to buy books at b&n, even if you are using a gift card. I guess b&n considers a $0 balance debit card as invalid. Seems to makes sense. The credit card is used for their DRM. A zero balance card kind of defeats the intent of using a credit card for that.
New User
Betty45EM
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎12-28-2012
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Re: Gift card issue...needs to be fixed!

We have the SAME problem; we set up a gift card, and the confirmation takes us to the credit card. We called phone support, got the Philippines, could not understand them, we got hung up, and then were told we would have to wait for a call from the US. This is UNSATISFACTORY, as it appears that BN has known about this gift card problem for TWO YEARS, and yes, I am using caps to raise my voice. We pay good money and expect better support from a product that BN says is supposed to be high quality. Fix this!!!
Inspired Bibliophile
LarryOnLI
Posts: 2,001
Registered: ‎01-04-2010
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Re: Gift card issue...needs to be fixed!


Betty45EM wrote:
We have the SAME problem; we set up a gift card, and the confirmation takes us to the credit card. We called phone support, got the Philippines, could not understand them, we got hung up, and then were told we would have to wait for a call from the US. This is UNSATISFACTORY, as it appears that BN has known about this gift card problem for TWO YEARS, and yes, I am using caps to raise my voice. We pay good money and expect better support from a product that BN says is supposed to be high quality. Fix this!!!

Nothing needs to be fixed .... because nothing is broken.

 

The gift card is used to purchase the book.

 

A current valid credit card is needed to apply the digital rights management B&N uses.

 

B&N runs a hold on your card for an amount of less than $1 to verify that you have a valid card on the account. The card is not charged.

 

The reason B&N does this is to keep you from sharing the book online. Very few people are willing to share their credit card numbers along with the books they purchased.

 

Bibliophile
bklvr896
Posts: 4,812
Registered: ‎12-31-2009
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Re: Gift card issue...needs to be fixed!


Betty45EM wrote:
We have the SAME problem; we set up a gift card, and the confirmation takes us to the credit card. We called phone support, got the Philippines, could not understand them, we got hung up, and then were told we would have to wait for a call from the US. This is UNSATISFACTORY, as it appears that BN has known about this gift card problem for TWO YEARS, and yes, I am using caps to raise my voice. We pay good money and expect better support from a product that BN says is supposed to be high quality. Fix this!!!

The confirmation page should say that the gift card on file will be unused first, but as stated, you still need a valid cc on file.

Reader
jlj1198
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎02-20-2011
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Re: Gift card issue...needs to be fixed!

As of January 1, 2013, this is still a problem. Barnes and Noble does not total their gift cards. They charge whichever of the three gift cards they feel like taking from, usually the one with the most money, instead of totaling the amount of all three gift cards and taking it from there. I have two gift cards with very low amounts ( one with a little over a dollar and one with a little over two dollars). Instead of taking money from those cards first, they took it from the $25 gift card. They give you the option to delete the cards with low amounts. If I delete them, who gets that money? Barnes and Noble? This seems like a shady business practice to me. I plan on looking into it. I e-mailed them at least six months ago when I first became aware of this policy. They said they take all customer feedback into account. That's apparently not true if people have been complaining about this for over two years and nothing's changed. Every other company I have gift cards with totals them together, so the charge is taken from the total, not one individual arbitrarily chosen gift card. Barnes and Noble needs to change their policy.

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Mercury_Glitch
Posts: 1,418
Registered: ‎06-07-2011
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Re: Gift card issue...needs to be fixed!


jlj1198 wrote:

If I delete them, who gets that money? Barnes and Noble?


 

No, you do.  Presuming you have the physical gift cards still, they are valid and can be used in the store.  If you don't have them, you can buy a eGift card using them via BN.com and you can even use the other gift cards toward that purchase. 

 

That's not to say B&N shouldn't change the method, however it may be a bit more technical since they allow you to use the gift cards in the store.  So lets say you've got three gift cards, each with 25$ on them.  You add all three to your Nook for a total of 75$.  Now you use gift card one in store to buy coffee and a sandwhich, lets say it's 10$.  As it stands now it's very easy for them to track that and keep the Nook records accurate.  If they start merging things it becomes more steps in tracking the individual cards and thus more places something can go wrong.

The Wheel weaves as the Wheel wills, and we are only the thread of the Pattern.
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keriflur
Posts: 6,711
Registered: ‎01-05-2010
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Re: Gift card issue...needs to be fixed!


Mercury_Glitch wrote:

jlj1198 wrote:

If I delete them, who gets that money? Barnes and Noble?


 

No, you do.  Presuming you have the physical gift cards still, they are valid and can be used in the store.  If you don't have them, you can buy a eGift card using them via BN.com and you can even use the other gift cards toward that purchase. 

 

That's not to say B&N shouldn't change the method, however it may be a bit more technical since they allow you to use the gift cards in the store.  So lets say you've got three gift cards, each with 25$ on them.  You add all three to your Nook for a total of 75$.  Now you use gift card one in store to buy coffee and a sandwhich, lets say it's 10$.  As it stands now it's very easy for them to track that and keep the Nook records accurate.  If they start merging things it becomes more steps in tracking the individual cards and thus more places something can go wrong.


The solution here isn't exactly merging, it's to take the lowest value card and apply it.  If there is still a balance due, take the next lowest value card and apply that, continuing the loop until there is no longer a balance due or the user has no more gift cards available.  This should have no affect on the store practices at all.

 

AFAIK, the coding on this is extremely simple, and logic tells me that there's only one possible reason that this hasn't already been fixed - B&N doesn't think it's important.

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MacMcK1957
Posts: 2,208
Registered: ‎07-25-2011
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Re: Gift card issue...needs to be fixed!


keriflur wrote:
... 

AFAIK, the coding on this is extremely simple, and logic tells me that there's only one possible reason that this hasn't already been fixed - B&N doesn't think it's important.


There is actually another possibility: that B&N actually wants you to delete the cards with the small, unused balances.  Hanlon's Razor tells me that yours is the more likely explanation, but you have to admit the other is possible.

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keriflur
Posts: 6,711
Registered: ‎01-05-2010
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Re: Gift card issue...needs to be fixed!


MacMcK1957 wrote:

keriflur wrote:
... 

AFAIK, the coding on this is extremely simple, and logic tells me that there's only one possible reason that this hasn't already been fixed - B&N doesn't think it's important.


There is actually another possibility: that B&N actually wants you to delete the cards with the small, unused balances.  Hanlon's Razor tells me that yours is the more likely explanation, but you have to admit the other is possible.


Yes, that's true, there could be a nefarious desire to get us to just give up on those little balances.  It's a sad thought.

 

Wordsmith
tmr4
Posts: 268
Registered: ‎05-08-2010
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Re: Gift card issue...needs to be fixed!

They use to take from the smaller balance gift card. I think the current policy is to encourage additional sales as folks buy a low value item to clear out several small balance gift cards. I rarely load three gift cards at a time anymore toget more flexibility on this.
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LarryOnLI
Posts: 2,001
Registered: ‎01-04-2010
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Re: Gift card issue...needs to be fixed!

[ Edited ]

keriflur wrote:

MacMcK1957 wrote:

keriflur wrote:
... 

AFAIK, the coding on this is extremely simple, and logic tells me that there's only one possible reason that this hasn't already been fixed - B&N doesn't think it's important.


There is actually another possibility: that B&N actually wants you to delete the cards with the small, unused balances.  Hanlon's Razor tells me that yours is the more likely explanation, but you have to admit the other is possible.


Yes, that's true, there could be a nefarious desire to get us to just give up on those little balances.  It's a sad thought.

 


Remembered from my "Accounting for Managers" class when I was working on my MBA:

 

Unused gift card balances remain on the companies books as a liability until they are used. The income can not be "booked" until  they are used to make a purchase.

 

This of course does not apply to cards that expire or have a maintenance fee (which B&N cards do not).

 

Also I believe that if unused gift card balances are kept in an interest bearing account, then that interest belongs to the company.

 

Disclaimer: I am not an accountant or CPA, this is just something I remembered from a single accounting class many years ago.

 

FWIW: I agree with Keri that B&N should take from the card with the lowest balance first, and work their way up. I just made a gift card purchase that barely exceeded the balance on my lowest card. So now I have two cards with partial balances, rather than one card with a larger balance.

 

I do not leave gift cards on the account, since it is shared with other family members, and we all add our gift cards to the account when making a purchase and remove them when done.

 

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