As a successful Amazon seller for over 10 years, the #1 question I get asked about Amazon gift cards is: "Where can I use my Amazon gift card?"
People are sometimes surprised to learn there are restrictions on how and where you can redeem Amazon gift cards. In this complete 2800+ word guide, I‘ll clear up the confusion and walk you through everywhere you can – and can‘t – use Amazon gift cards this year.
I‘ll also answer common seller questions about combining gift card balances, using multiple gift cards, and more. My goal is to provide fellow sellers and savvy shoppers with insightful research and analysis based on my decade of experience managing an Amazon FBA business.
Let‘s dive in!
Here‘s a Quick Summary of Where You Can Use Amazon Gift Cards:
Before we get into the details, here‘s a quick overview of what you can and can‘t purchase with Amazon gift cards in 2023:
✅ Millions of products sold directly by Amazon
✅ Items sold by Amazon Marketplace sellers
✅ Digital downloads like movies, music, apps
✅ Kindle books and Kindle Unlimited
✅ Prime memberships
✅ Prime Video channels (HBO Max, Showtime, etc)
✅ Charitable donations via AmazonSmile
❌ Audible audiobooks and subscriptions
❌ Amazon Fresh grocery delivery
❌ Amazon Pharmacy prescriptions
❌ Gas stations
❌ Other gift cards
❌ Whole Foods stores
❌ Any brick-and-mortar stores
Now let‘s explore each of these categories in more detail…
What You CAN Buy With An Amazon Gift Card
The good news is Amazon gift cards can be used to purchase millions of eligible items across Amazon‘s entire product catalog:
1. Amazon Products
Any item sold directly by Amazon is eligible for gift card payment. This includes Amazon‘s own private label brands:
- Electronics – Fire tablets, Echo devices, Ring security cameras, Blink cameras, etc.
- Amazon Basics – batteries, cables, office supplies, furniture, kitchenware, etc.
- Amazon Essentials and Goodthreads – clothing and shoes
- Solimo – household goods and personal care items
- Presto! – cleaning supplies
- Happy Belly – snacks and grocery items
- Wag and Kitzy – pet supplies
And any other products sold directly by Amazon like books, toys, video games, lawn & garden items, sporting goods, beauty products, and more.
2. Amazon Marketplace Items
Gift cards can also be used to purchase products sold by Amazon‘s nearly 2 million third-party sellers. You‘ll see "Ships from and sold by [seller name]" for these Marketplace items.
Rest assured any Marketplace purchase made with a gift card still ensures the seller gets paid. Amazon deposits the funds directly into the seller‘s account per their standard payout schedule.
This gives you millions more products to choose from with gift card funds!
3. Digital Downloads
Amazon gift cards cover all types of digital content and subscriptions:
- Kindle books, magazines, and newspapers
- Audiobooks (with some exceptions we‘ll cover shortly)
- Music, movies, and TV shows to purchase or rent
- Apps, games, and software downloads
- Prime Video Channel subscriptions like HBO Max, Showtime, Paramount+, etc.
- Twitch channel subscriptions for gamers
So digital enthusiasts can redeem gift cards for all the ebooks, movies, apps, and more they desire.
4. Physical & Digital Amazon Gift Cards
Ironically, you can buy Amazon gift cards with a gift card on Amazon. Both physical gift cards and digital eGift cards are eligible.
This is a great way to split up a large gift card amount into smaller cards as gifts for friends, family, employees, etc.
Or you can purchase an eGift card for yourself to easily reload your gift card balance.
5. Charity Donations Via AmazonSmile
Through the AmazonSmile program, customers can donate 0.5% of eligible purchases to the charity of their choice.
Charitable contributions made through AmazonSmile also accept Amazon gift cards. Just make sure to shop through the AmazonSmile site or app.
So your gift card funds can go towards making a positive impact!
What You CAN‘T Buy With Amazon Gift Cards
Now let‘s look at the limitations on Amazon gift card spending:
1. You Can‘t Use Amazon Gift Cards For Audible
As an Amazon seller, this is one of the most common customer questions I get!
Despite being owned by Amazon, Audible does not accept Amazon gift cards as payment for:
- Audible Plus premium subscriptions
- Audible Escape subscriptions
- Individual audiobook purchases
- Gifting an Audible membership
The only payment methods accepted by Audible are credit cards and debit cards.
Many sellers and shoppers assume that because Amazon owns Audible, you can use Amazon funds interchangeably between the two platforms. But that is unfortunately not the case right now.
Hopefully Amazon will enable this in the future to simplify things for buyers!
2. You Can‘t Use Amazon Gift Cards At Whole Foods
Since Amazon‘s $13.7 billion acquisition of Whole Foods in 2017, there‘s been confusion about using Amazon gift cards in Whole Foods stores.
But Whole Foods does not accept Amazon gift cards as payment for groceries or other in-store purchases.
The only forms of payment accepted at Whole Foods are:
- Credit cards
- Debit cards
- Apple Pay
- Google Pay
The same policy applies for Whole Foods Delivery – no Amazon gift cards allowed.
Again, many people assume that because Amazon owns Whole Foods, their gift card funds can be used interchangeably. But for now, that is not the case.
3. You Can‘t Use Amazon Gift Cards At Gas Stations
While Amazon has expanded into grocery and brick-and-mortar stores, you still can‘t use an Amazon gift card at gas stations like Shell, Exxon, BP, Sunoco, etc.
Gas station convenience stores and pumps only accept branded gas station gift cards, major credit/debit cards, and cash.
4. You Can‘t Buy Other Gift Cards With an Amazon Gift Card
Here‘s another common area of confusion around Amazon gift cards – you cannot purchase other retail gift cards using Amazon funds.
For example, let‘s say you have a $100 Amazon gift card balance and want to buy a $50 Target gift card on Amazon. This transaction would be declined.
When buying gift cards from other brands on Amazon – like Target, Starbucks, Apple, etc. – you can only use credit and debit card payment. Amazon gift cards are not accepted for these purchases.
This rule prevents gift card laundering and fraud. It ensures your Amazon gift card can only be spent on direct Amazon purchases.
As a seller, I appreciate Amazon having this policy in place to avoid shady behavior and protect buyers. But it does catch some well-meaning shoppers by surprise!
5. You Can‘t Use Amazon Gift Cards At Physical Stores
Large retailers like Walmart, Target, Best Buy, etc. may sell Amazon gift cards in-store. But they do not accept Amazon cards as a payment method for purchases.
No brick-and-mortar stores currently allow Amazon gift cards to be redeemed for goods or services. The funds can only be spent on eligible purchases on Amazon‘s website.
This unambiguous policy prevents confusion for shoppers and simplifies things for retailers. But it‘s something savvy Amazon buyers need to remember.
Combining Multiple Amazon Gift Cards
A common question I get from Amazon sellers is whether you can use two or more gift cards at the same time. The answer is yes! Here‘s how combining gift cards works:
Adding Multiple Gift Cards to Your Amazon Account
- Go to "Your Account" then select "Gift cards & promotional codes"
- Enter up to 50 gift card redemption codes on this page
- The total combined balance of all added gift cards will appear
Adding Multiple Gift Cards to Your Amazon Account
Once added, these gift cards act as one consolidated source of funds in your account.
Using Multiple Gift Cards at Checkout
During checkout on Amazon, your total gift card balance is automatically applied before any other payment method.
If your purchase exceeds your total gift card value, you can pay the remainder with a credit/debit card or other payment option.
So Amazon will first deduct the full gift card balance, then charge the rest to your additional payment method.
Limits on Combining Amazon Gift Cards
- The max you can redeem at once is 50 gift cards
- You can‘t transfer funds between gift cards
- Each gift card‘s balance remains separate
So while you can use multiple gift cards together, you can‘t combine or merge the balances directly.
But adding up to 50 gift cards to your account gives you one large available balance to shop with!
Checking Your Amazon Gift Card Balance
Wondering how much you have left on an Amazon gift card? There are a few easy ways to check the balance:
Go to "Your Account" then select "Gift cards & promotional codes". You‘ll see the balance of any added gift cards.
In the app menu (☰ icon), tap "Gift cards & promotional codes" to view your balance.
Call Customer Service
Call 1-888-280-4331 (toll-free in the US) and provide the gift card number to check the balance.
Gift Card Email
For eGift cards, open the gift card email and scroll down to view the balance.
Physical Gift Card
If you have the plastic gift card, the balance will be printed on the back.
Checking your balance makes it easy to track your available funds and budget spending!
Can You Get Cash Back From An Amazon Gift Card?
This is one of the most frequent gift card questions I see sellers ask on Amazon forums and groups.
Unfortunately, Amazon does not offer any way to redeem gift card balances for cash.
Once purchased, Amazon gift cards can only be used for eligible purchases on Amazon.com. Per the Amazon Gift Card Terms and Conditions, cash or credit refunds are not allowed.
If you end up with leftover funds on an Amazon gift card, you‘ll need to spend it shopping on Amazon or give the card to someone else.
As a seller, I know it can be frustrating to have small unused balances stuck on gift cards. But Amazon‘s policy prevents gift card fraud and maintains the 1:1 value relationship between gift cards and Amazon products.
Hopefully in the future Amazon will add options to merge card balances or redeem small balances for cash. But for now, reselling or exchanging gift cards for cash violates their terms.
Where to Buy Amazon Gift Cards
Wondering where to purchase Amazon gift cards? Here are some of the most popular options:
Buy on Amazon.com
- Physical gift cards in various holiday designs
- Digital eGift cards delivered by email
Amazon provides the option to schedule delivery dates and include custom gift messages. This makes Amazon gift cards great for last-minute gifts!
You can buy digital Amazon gift cards straight from the app and have them sent instantly to friends & family. Just tap "Gift Cards" in the app menu.
Amazon Books & Amazon 4-Star Stores
Grocery & Convenience Stores
- Circle K
- Cumberland Farms
Most major grocery store and gas station convenience store chains carry Amazon gift cards near the registers.
Big Box Stores
Retail giants like Walmart, Target, Best Buy, Costco, Sam‘s Club, and more have Amazon gift cards in the gift card section or at checkout lanes.
So next time you‘re out running errands, you can easily pick up an Amazon gift card!
Top Amazon Gift Card Questions from Sellers
Here are the answers to my top 5 most frequently asked questions about Amazon gift cards from fellow sellers:
1. Do Amazon gift cards expire?
No, Amazon gift cards do not expire. The funds never expire and can be redeemed years later if needed.
Amazon promo code credits do expire after a set timeframe, but gift cards themselves remain valid.
2. What if my gift card is lost or stolen?
If an Amazon gift card is lost, stolen, or the redemption code is compromised, immediately call Amazon customer service.
They can freeze the gift card to prevent fraudulent use. And if funds were already redeemed, Amazon may be able to refund the purchase or issue you a new gift card.
3. Are Amazon gift cards returnable?
Yes, if the gift card was purchased directly from Amazon.com, it can be returned within 30 days of purchase for a full refund.
Just provide the order number or gift card number when requesting the return. 3rd party seller gift cards may not be returnable though.
4. Can I purchase Amazon gift cards with another gift card?
No, you cannot buy Amazon gift cards with another gift card per their policy. Only debit/credit cards can be used to purchase Amazon gift cards.
This rule prevents laundering and limits gift card fund usage to Amazon.com.
5. Can I use an Amazon gift card internationally?
Yes, but only on the localized Amazon website for that country.
For example, a gift card purchased on Amazon.com would work for Amazon.com but not Amazon.ca or Amazon.co.uk.
The gift card funds are tied to the country of origin. This prevents arbitrage and cross-border gift card resale abuse.
Hope this Amazon seller‘s guide clearly explains where you can use Amazon gift cards this year! Let me know if you have any other gift card questions.