• Report: #926878
Complaint Review:


  • Submitted: Mon, August 13, 2012
  • Updated: Thu, December 20, 2012

  • Reported By: DOJ-Guy — Portland Oregon United States of America
Internet United States of America

www.mygiftcardsite.com US BANK backed Debit Visa GIFT CARD load up to 500 dollars for 5.95 fee. deceptive practices=rip off "gift cards" Internet

*Consumer Comment: Legality doesn't mean it's not a rip off

*Consumer Comment: giftcards

*Consumer Comment: this is how it is...

*Consumer Comment: The same problem

*Author of original report: Gift Card Visa (bad idea0

*General Comment: You were not scammed (at least not by your prepaid card)

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First, I loaded this card with 145.00 dollars of my hard-earned cash.  A few hours later, I attempted to pay for a movers via the UHAUL web site for 135.95.  I had made no other purchases so the full 145.00 should have been there for my use.  But the transaction was declined.  This transaction was decline 4 times.  When I called the card they made the statement that the transaction was declined due to the fact that the charge submitted was 156.00 total which was more than the amount placed on my card for an available balance.  I at this point told the CSR that the charge was for 135.95 and I had 145.00 on the card.  She reported back to me to me that they added a 15% gratuity to the actual charge which made the charge 156.00 which made it decline. So they did this without my knowledge or consent.  They felt they could spend my money for me.  Even if this had been for a purchase where a gratutity could have been applied isn't that my choice when and where I spend?  It d**n well should be.

 I asked them to wave the gratuity charge because UHAUL is not the sort of business that gets a gratuity.  She told me she could not do this and that I would have to wait for the charge to go through --at which point it could take a few weeks for this company to refund the difference of the gratuity which amounted to 14.39.  I was outraged by this.  I asked her exactly how I was to use the full benefit of my full 145.00 if they were going to tack on a gratuity for every charge?  She told me to use my card at a gas station or Walmart and than this issue would not happen...(again I was pissed not only won't they let me have access to MY money but now they are telling me how I can spend it!!!).

So I figured they were pulling this so they could withhold money and make money off my money and maybe they would get to charge me the 2.00 fee or some such crap.  This is what made it seem like a rip-off scam to me.

So I thought okay, I will use the remaining balance to buy gas (which she recommended).  I took the car down and had the guy swipe it the card so I could pay for 9.00 of gas.  In Oregon, we are not allowed by law to pump our own gas, so this guy swipes the card..I wasn't given an option of pre-pay that is not how it is done in this state.  After this gas purchase I should have been left with a remaining available balance of 25.00. So I went to Walmart to buy 13.11 cents worth of merchandise and the card was again declined! 

When I called to find out what the issue was now... the CSR tells me that with a gas purchase they can hold up to 75.00 dollars off a card until the merchant clears the finalized purchase...another-words again my money was not available to me and this scam of a company had some 'mc-cheesey' excuse for withholding my money.  I am told that sometime in the next few weeks the remaining balance will be returned to my card but they can't tell me when. So there is a little more than 30.00 worth of my cash that I can't even gain access to until this company clears everything which could take weeks!

The worst experience I have ever been through!  I will never again use a gift card-- especially if it is backed by US BANK.  These people have some nerve to dictate how I can spend my own my by assigning rules to the types of purchases that can be assessed.  They have no right to withhold my funds period.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 08/13/2012 10:21 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/wwwmygiftcardsitecom/internet/wwwmygiftcardsitecom-us-bank-backed-debit-visa-gift-card-load-up-to-500-dollars-for-595-926878. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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#1 Consumer Comment

Legality doesn't mean it's not a rip off

AUTHOR: Anonymous - ()

Does it being legal mean that it's not a ripoff? I mean there are plenty of things that are totally legal, but companies try to exploit the customer (see automatic subscriptions). I believe it's the exploitation that makes something a scam, or a rip off.


As for the actual card, I was also told that I would have to wait a few weeks until the hold on my card would be up.  Sure, it's legal, but is it betraying the consumers trust? Yes. The company is very shady and has it set up to exploit people.


And why should the consumer accept the, "everyone's doing it" defense?  I understand gratuity, but putting someone's money on a hold for more than a few days  isn't fair, and I think that's why people are so dissatisfied with the service they've received.

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#2 Consumer Comment


AUTHOR: bulldog - ()

 in this world of complex finances...one would think the words gift card would be immune. the card that the grandparents sent to thier grandchild for 100 dollars should be for 100 dollars and without complications. a child doesn't know of gratuity or withholding for a purchase. shame on the banks. regardless of whether they participate in the transactions after card purchase or not. the smart bankers understand the deal...the consumer does not. i closed my account with u.s. bank and now work with a credit union who is up front with pre paid cards and giftcards. the best way to tell a bank your upset....is to leave them

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#3 Consumer Comment

this is how it is...

AUTHOR: lily - (United States of America)

About your "issue" This is not an issue. I do understand how frustrating I could be to have to go through this. but I am telling you. It is not the gift cards fault. Maybe you can talk to the person that created the laws of credit. This is how credit usually works. No the cashier behind the counter in the uhaul place didn't meant to run it for more that you actually wanted to purchase. It's the service machine that ussually creates the Hold in anticipation of a gratutity or tip before the transaction is settle. Not you dont usually see this with bank cards because your bank doesn't care if your accounts goes over. if it goes over it's better for them because they get to charge you $35 dollars extra plus whatever you purchased. even if you dont see it with your bank card it is still there. You have to stop blaming the company and start blaming yourself for not knowing how to used the card. plain and simple. if you go to the gas station, dont swipe it at the pump, go inside, have the cashier run it for the exact amount, because if you are too lazy to go inside to swipe the card then the gas pump doesn't know how much of gas you are going to get and it usually creates up to $75 dollar hold in your account until the transaction settles. if your gift card is a is less the $75 dollars then it will hold whatever you have available regardless of how much gas you get. for instance if you have a 50 dollar gift card and you swipe 20 outside because you swiped outside at the gas pump it will hold the whole 50 until the gas station collects then the remaining will go back into your account. that's only because the gas pump doesn't know exactly how much gas you want to get so it will hold what ever you have available that way you don 't get more gas than what you actually have available.  that usually take 24-72 hours to release. I really doubt that the CRS told you several weeks. That's not possible.  As far as a restaurant!!! YES!! The service machine that they have actually runs the card for more than your bill. 20% more to be exact. For instance if you are dinning at a restaurant and your bill comes out to be $50 and you have a 50 dollar giftcard, the cash register "AKA" service machine will hold 20% more just in case you want to leave them a tip... soo if the restaurant bill comes out at 50 dollars when they swipe your card the service machine will actually read it for 20% more. so if your bill is 50 multiply it but 20%( which 20% = 1.2). so multiply 50 x 1.2= $60. so your card will decline each time. NO it's not the cashier doing it and NO it's not the gift card people doing it either. It's the service machine. It's the way credit runs. so in order to know exactly how much you need to run your card for at a restaurant try this next time. if you have a $50 dollar giftcard you have to actually run it for 20% less that way it can go through for you. so take 50 and divided by 20% or by 1.2 ( 50/1.2= 41.66) soooo. the card has to be run for 41.66 in order to get approve. swipe the gift card for the 41.66 and then pay the difference with another method of payment. also about the preauthorizations. No they are not holding your money either. If there was a pre authorization it means that you card was funded enough to pay the merchant but somewhere along the line the transaction failed and in your end it decline or it might have been voided by mistake too. so now since the merchant asked for permission to take money out from your card and then voided the transaction then the process can not be reverse because there is a waiting period of 7 days and then on the 8th day it will be available in your account. YES!! credit cards do this too. you just never see it because i have never seen a 50 dollar credit card it's ussually more than that. gift cards works like a credit card. even if it's say visa, they work as a credit because it has fix funds that can't be exceeded( just like credit cards) and they don't carry a PIN number...I trully hope this helps. THIS is how credit works. There is nothing they can do. they have to obey by it. All financial institutions have to do this. Not just the giftcard providers. all of them has to follow this rule

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#4 Consumer Comment

The same problem

AUTHOR: Atipton - (United States of America)

I bought this card for my daughter to take on a girlscout trip.  And she is having the same problem  They stopped at Burger King for dinner and they took 15% out of her card.  When I called they told me it was only resturants and spa things like that not fast food or shopping. 

But that I would get the money back and when I asked when she informed me the second week in October.  Here it is my daughter is 5 hours away from me with only the money on that card.  And they are deducting away on things that should not be. 

This should be a clear charge across the front of the package that you will automactilly be charged 15% on ALL charges.  Yes we might get the money back.  But its not fair for them to dicate how we spend our money. 

I will not be using this card after this and will advise all of my family, friends, co-workers, everyone I know not to purchase from this company this is a rip off a scam and should not be allowed. 

I hope and pray that my daughter will have enough money to make it through her trip.
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#5 Author of original report

Gift Card Visa (bad idea0

AUTHOR: DOJ-Guy - (United States of America)

No, on the contrary UHAUL had zero to do with the added gratuity.  I did ask the CSR on the gift card about it and she admitted that they tack on that gratuity automatically...which means UHAUL had no clue that this was part of the reason for the decline.  Again, I say where is the customers choice in this?  Again when I asked that the CSR remove this as it wasn't applicable she explained that it could not be done...it was computer generated  per their system.

Ultimately this is MY money and I should be able to spend it as I see fit.  There should not be rules as to how I can spend MY money just because it is in gift card form.  UHAUL is not a gratuity based service which is part of why this is beyond ridiculous.  But lets say for the benefit of their argument that this was a gratuity based serve --shouldn't *I* as the customer have the right to tip as I see fit?  What if the service was horrible why should my gift card dictate the terms of tipping?  That is also a big no-no in my book.  If it it their money thet can do as they like but this is MY money we are speaking of.
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#6 General Comment

You were not scammed (at least not by your prepaid card)

AUTHOR: Jane - (U.S.A.)

I hate to break this to you, but your 'issue' is not with the prepaid card company, it is with UHaul.

Uhaul sent the request for payment in 'that' amount. If you had an issue with that, you should have spoke to the person at UHaul that processed your transaction. THEY are the ones that added the fee to your bill, they are the only ones that could have adjusted your bill at the point of sale to remove that gratiuty. Your card company is merely doing what they THINK you agreed to when you gave Uhaul your prepaid card.  Uhaul should have explained ANY extra charges to you. They did not. I cannot fathom how you blame your prepaid card for this. 

It did not sound to me as if the CSR was telling you HOW to spend your money. Instead it seemed as if she was making a suggestion, since you were unclear as to how the cards actually work in a real world application.  It was a poor suggestion on the part of the CSR since she did not understand that you didn't have all the information you needed to make a better decision, but THAT was not her fault.

As for the 'issue' with the gas station, ALL CREDIT CARDS do this too. You *might* be able to circumvent this 'hold' if you go into the store and make a purchase versus making a purchase at the pump via the attendent. I understand your surprise at learning this, but it is NOT some plot to steal your $15.00.  This happens to EVERYONE that uses a card in the way(s) that you did.

Should you rent a car, you will find this practice too.  Ditto if you eat at a resturant or make reservations at some hotels.

Ask your friends about this. The ones with prepaid cards will be able to relate the same thing to you.

People with credit cards *might* not be aware of this practice unless they are close to their limit, since it would not immediately (if ever) affect them, but it happens to them also. When I got my first credit card, my limit was $500.00. I too had to call Chase to find out why money that I had not spent could not be used. Fortunately for me, my CSR was apparently much more patient than yours was.

You might want to consider using cash until you understand just how credit/debit cards work OR ask exactly how much money they will 'hold' when you conduct future transactions with credit or debit or prepaid cards and adjust your balances accordingly, because they *DO* have a right to do this to you since you agreed to the terms of usage when you agreed to use the services of the prepaid company.

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