Unusable Australia Post VISA gift card

I was given a VISA gift card from Australia Post last July. Tried to use it in multiple stores, it didn’t work. Rang the helpline, they issued a new card. Tried to use it a couple of months ago, it didn’t work. Rang the helpline again, apparently the card hadn’t been ‘activated’. The customer service rep ‘activated’ the card for me. Tried to use it on the weekend, it still doesn’t work. Also tried using it online and that didn’t work either.

I’ve read all the FAQs etc on the Australia Post website and am unable to see where the problem lies. I’m going to try to set aside an hour in the next few days to sit in the phone queue of the helpline AGAIN to try to get this resolved. However in the meantime I’m wondering:

  • whether anyone has a similar issue and if so, how it was resolved

  • what my rights are, ie where do I go next if I still have a non-functioning card

(To add insult to injury, they took money out of the balance because I had the nerve to call the helpline!)

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If it is handy and an option, maybe take it to an Australia Post store, explain your problem and see if they can check for you if it works.

Thanks for the suggestion - unfortunately Aust Post staff can’t help. The online service reps tell me the balance is there (and I can get SMS confirmation of it) - I just can’t access the funds.

@christins it sounds like a major failure as the card is unusable, so you should be able to get your choice or repair, replace or refund? @MeredithCridland or @SarahAgar might have some good advice for you, this sounds a bit complex.

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How frustrating! It sounds like something that Aus Post should be able to fix fairly easily. The Postal Ombudsman http://www.ombudsman.gov.au/about/postal-industry-ombudsman might be able to help if Aus Post doesn’t get its act together, although this might be outside the area of postal or related services. As you were given the card, you might want to see if the person who bought it still has the receipt or other proof of purchase. That could help to speed up the process.

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Thanks all for your suggestions. I spoke to a service centre rep yesterday - apparently the issue (this time around) was that the purchase amount of the items I was trying to buy was greater than the card value, and some merchants’ EFTPOS machines can’t accommodate part payment on these types of gift cards.

So … to end this saga I have used the card to part-pay my council rates online. I’m not sure that’s what my in-laws had in mind when they gave me the card, but at least it’s out of my life now!

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Pleased it all worked out for you.

I had a Australia post load and go visa card im not if that is the one you mean. Mine did work and they expire just like a banks debit card does also. The only thing it would not work with was when i temporary didnt have my banks debit card only just this week and i was trying to use the load and go card to pay for pre paid mobile recharge i tried and tried again but it did not accept it. I just used the remaining balance i had for another purchase as it was going to expire right this month. The load and go one from aus post isnt to bad but they charge you for the initial purchase but at least it is safer if you dont have a bank card etc. I doubt i will buy another one again unless i have no choice to purchase it.But in regards why yours is not wording i cant help sorry.

It is now 2020 and this is still a problem. I have a Australia post prepaid Mastercard that I cannot use online. I am not alone. If you have a look at the productreview.com.au website you will see that it is full of recent complaints along similar lines. They don’t work online and noone has been able to get an explanation as to why, or to get a refund. Has anyone been able to use one of these cards at all? Do they work at a brick and mortar shop? Has anyone ever got a refund? Why are Australia Post still allowed to sell these cards if they don’t work? I would appreciate an answer if anyone has one about their experience with these cards. At the moment I have a $250 card that I can’t use.

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Not being exposed to one of those cards and thus unable to comment, I suggest you read the web pages from choice and the ACCC on consumer rights. If the Auspost cards are not documented as having limitations you might send a formal letter of complaint to Auspost using their complain contact details assuming the Auspost shop you bought the card from refuses to accept it, as I suspect they would.

There are many links and guidances on the community - use the search function for ‘Australian Consumer Law, ACL, Consumer right, Letter of Complaint’ etc.

Without limitations as compared to other visa cards being listed you may have cause to demand a refund for false advertising or other aspects.

The bottom line is you cannot be worse off than you are.

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The cards are marketed as :joy:

Manage your budget, shop online securely and have travel funds readily available with our range of prepaid cards.

Something which is worth noting and may cause a transaction decline is:

When using your card online, or over the phone, use the card number, expiry date and CVV (last
3 digits on the signature panel). If asked to provide a name for the card, please enter “Valued
Cardholder
”.

The PDS for the cards can be found here:

The PDF also states:

The Card can be used anywhere Visa Prepaid Cards are accepted including online purchase
transactions (excluding gambling merchants).

If you have followed the above and it still declines a transaction when the site says it accepts ‘Visa Prepaid Cards’ (maybe this should have been Mastercard prepaid cards), then you would have grounds to return the card, ask for a refund on loaded money and also for any fees paid when purchasing the card.

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TONIGHT 05/01/2021 A Current Affair ( ACA) highlighted a recent problem with these cards being used ( possibly fraudulently) before the original purchasers had actualy received them as Xmas gifts ETC…

I received a Visa Prepaid/Preloaded gift card at Xmas and chose to check it out. After some investigative work I found there is another type of card that carries the “VISA” branding and brand name. HOwever this card CAN ONLY BE USED FOR ONLINE OR TELEPHONE transactions. IT CANNOT be used in a physical store. The card is a VISA 1 (one) card.

A couple of things about this card - 1. THERE is NO PIN NUMBER on the card. 2.The card does NOT carry an embossed card number. 3. THIS card MUST be registered on the website before USE otherwise IT WILL be declined. 4. Although it is a loadable card - IT can only accept a ONCE OFF value that is tendered AT POINT OF SALE.

Website URL https://www.only1visagiftcard.com.au/

I am NOT doubting anyone here in this thread, and I post this information as it has caught me off guard. If I had not of been open to the scam stuff, I would have tried to use this card “IN STORE” and that would have left me rather embarrassed. So once I had all the facts and advised the person who gifted me the card of these facts (in case they used them with others for gifting) I came in here and searched and found this thread. Hope this helps somebody out!!

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That is not a unique card. The ‘digital cards’ sold by The Card Network are similar yet a bit different. One version of the TCN sold card gets loaded into googlepay or applepay and then functions via the NFC function. The ‘cards’ are not reloadable and in my single experience they can be configured to work in store OR online, although once in google pay it appears they might display online usable details - yet those may not work (TBD).

The bottom line is that with many products and services it is necessary to read the large print and the fine print and understand what the product is. Checking the linked web site they are clear and up front about the product, as is TCN and probably all the similar gift cards out there.

Auspost seems to have two problems, one being their cards and the other being their attitude.

Scammers fraudulently spending money on your gift cards

As the claims go Auspost fobs off the reports as not their problem and the official responses are

Statement by Australia Post spokesperson:

Theft of funds after purchase is a criminal matter and if customers are concerned fraudulent transactions have been made they should immediately contact police and call MasterCard on 1800 549 718 to report the incident.

Statement by Mastercard spokesperson:

Customers using the Australia Post Gift Card by Mastercard are protected against fraudulent transactions providing the card has remained in their possession. If a customer suspects there has been unauthorized use of their Mastercard prepaid card, they should contact the Customer Care team immediately on 1800 549 718.

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Ok, thus might be so.

I was of the impression that VISA was only a service through “BANKING Institutions” and as Australia Post in the past supplied similar services , they were able to supply the service. What I was "unaware " of was this type of card is now being sold through 3rd and even 4th party providers. Hence my post to attempt to alert people to this fact.

In past experience I have always thought of the VISA brand as a secure and reputable product. I know the original purchaser would have done so with that thought in mind, being unaware that it is being sold by several tiers of merchants.

Prior to this coming to light - I would have been quite UN AWARE of the fact that there is a number of matters that make this a different product from what I percieve as a reputable product. The very fact that the product clearly states on the website (at the very bottom ) Issuing STATEMENT- The Only 1 Gift Card (‘Card’) is issued by Indue Ltd ABN 97 087 822 464. Blackhawk Australia Pty Ltd ACN 123 251 703 is a third party agent of the issuer Indue based in Brisbane, Australia.

Although we live in a progressive world people need to be aware that in this digital world more and more we are being exposed to scams. I believe that this product being sold on multiple tiers allows a higher chance of fraud. Especially since it falls outside of the control of the “mainstream banking” industry.

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Your highlighting this product is welcome. I expect few realised there is this product category ‘in the wild’ and spreading.

It appears the issuer (all Visa and Mastercards are issued by a financial institution of some kind, not by Visa or Mastercard directly) is related to the infamous Indue Card that government has rolled out in lieu of cash payments to certain dole recipients, and Blackhawk is the ‘program manager’ for the card.

Indue’s web site is here

and the 1Visa Terms and Conditions for the flavours of the product are here

Like insurances and mobile plans it appears gift cards are increasingly a profit centre, with numerous caveats to products, being promoted by more businesses and organisations. Unfortunately it appears to be caveat emptor as the myriad different products can confuse consumers.

I suspect your posts will help many readers.

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@PhilT

THANK you for the weblinks. - After trawling through (T’s and C’s) once again I wonder if INDUE may get preferential treatment ( affiliation with governments) . The card has a 4 year expiry date,(at present) but I would envisage that, low turnover stock may not honour the stautory gift card times.…will just have to watch and see I suppose…

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The problem is not just the Australia Post Visa Card but their MasterCard as well.

https://9now.nine.com.au/a-current-affair/scammers-fraudulently-spending-money-on-your-australia-post-gift-cards-declining-cards/72da1084-bdbe-43ad-89c4-4c3719d8bade