Sophie - September 2nd, 2014
my journal
September 2016

Date: 2014-09-02 20:42
Security: Public
Subject: An interesting conversation about Amazon MP3 promotional credit

I just had a very interesting conversation with the support team at

I was calling about a $1.00 Amazon MP3 credit that I had acquired on the 27th of July 2013. This credit was given to me on (as opposed to, where my account actually is) for a 'Free App of the Day' order I made in the Amazon Appstore for Android app. (Note that none of this is referring to gift certificates. It's possible they may have the same issues, but I was not calling about that.)

My issue was that I couldn't use the credit on, because it would keep asking me for my card details, and I obviously didn't want to give them.

I learned a few things from the call:

  1. It is not possible to use the promotional credit unless you turn on your 1-Click setting.
  2. If you have a promotional credit on your account, Amazon will use that before your selected payment method.
  3. It is not possible to see whether you have any promotional credit on your account before you purchase; you have to contact Amazon by phone and ask.
All of these combine to make the ultimate money-sucker: Thought you had Amazon MP3 promotional credit but actually don't? Normally you'd be able to see that sort of thing on an order confirmation screen, but sorry, you have 1-Click turned on. Boom, that's £0.99, sucka.

But that's okay, she said, I have a £1.00 credit on my account, so you'll be fine.

"Wait a second," I said. "Is that 1 pound or 1 dollar?"

She confirmed to me that she was seeing a 1 pound credit on my account on which I had received on 12th October 2013 and expired Tuesday 30th September.

So I go to check my email, wondering if I'd missed something... but no, I didn't get any email about this credit at all. In fact, I never even *made* any orders on in October 2013, a fact that I was able to confirm by looking at my order history on the site. On I hadn't made any orders in 2013 at all.

She couldn't tell me which order the promotional credit came from; I'm not sure if this was for security or simply because nothing was showing up.

So at this point I'm left with a mystery promotional credit for £1.00, and I have no idea where it came from. (And it wouldn't have gone to my Spam folder as I have filters specifically set up so that any emails to my Amazon account email addresses do not get flagged as spam; I've had this set up for ages.)

So, now we have a case of: In order to use promotional credit that you don't even know exists, you need to turn on 1-Click.

Does this seem fishy to anyone else?

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