American Express Gift Cards are generally processed in the same manner as any other American Express Card. But there are a few differences:
• Be sure to confirm the Gift Card’s available balance with the customer before authorizing the transaction
• You can only authorize for the available balance. If it’s not sufficient, perform a split transaction requesting payment of the remaining amount using another payment method
• If the customer does not know the balance on their Gift Card, they can contact the customer service number on back of their Card
• You do not need new Point of Sale hardware or software to process an American Express Gift Card. Just follow standard Card Acceptance procedures and swipe the Gift Card through your Point of Sale terminal to receive an authorization
• Gift Cards can also be processed manually by following standard Card Acceptance procedures
Note: Although there are various American Express Gift Cards and designs, all American Express Gift Cards have an American Express Blue box logo either on the front of the Card or back of the Card. All Gift Cards also have the word “prepaid” or some similar designation on the front or back of the Card.
Dealing with online, telephone, and mail order transactions
• Gift Cards do not require a customer to provide their address; therefore for online transactions that request an address for verification, you will receive a “U” (unknown) response
• Complete the transaction by following your existing policies for handling online purchases upon receiving a “U” response
• Gift Card Acceptance is not recommended for transactions in which processing of the purchase is delayed (e.g., delayed shipments). These transactions could be declined by American Express since a customer could spend the remaining available funds on the Gift Card between the time of the initial order request and the time of actual processing of the payment.
Gift Cards and Returns
If a customer returns an item purchased on a Gift Card, simply Credit that amount back onto the Gift Card as you would with a return purchased on a regular American Express Card. Refunds or Credits may take three to seven days to process.
Disputes and Chargebacks
Disputes and Chargebacks will be handled under the same terms as your Merchant Card Acceptance Agreement. Gift Card cardholders are unable to dispute a billing transaction related to the quality of goods/services purchased; they are instructed to address these questions or complaints with the Merchant(s) directly instead.