Apparently someone didn’t get the memo that I don’t want Starbucks eGift cards!
Ha ha! Actually, there was no memo. I wrote a blog post about how difficult Starbucks eGift cards are to apply to the Starbucks app.
The short version of why I don’t want Starbucks eGift cards
Let’s start with the obvious reason why I don’t particularly want Starbucks gift cards.
I don’t drink coffee. I’m just not a hot drink person, though occasionally I’ll drink hot chocolate.
I’m more of an iced tea person as you might remember from some of my posts where I talk about my Mr. Coffee Iced Tea Maker.
Sure, I can choose an iced tea at Starbucks, but it’s not as good as the ones I make at home. Also Starbucks overloads the cup with ice, so very poor value.
I occasionally receive Starbucks eGift cards from others. It is pretty much impossible to add an eGift card to the Starbucks app on my iPhone. It’s just error after error after error!
To get around that, I’ve had moderate success logging into my account on the Starbucks website and adding the eGift card there.
The biggest problem is Starbucks doesn’t always let me log in! Starbucks accuses me of typing in the wrong password. And then if I try to get a password reset, the link Starbucks emails is a dead link!
It might take a few hours to log in to the Starbucks website. Once I get past the hurdle of logging on, adding the eGift card that way usually goes OK. And then that amount will show up on my phone’s Starbucks app.
Generous co-worker eGifts me
Lucky me! (Yes I’m dripping with sarcasm.)
One of my co-workers sent me a $15 Starbucks eGift card. And yes, that was very generous of her, especially since she doesn’t know my history of dealing with Starbucks eGift cards.
I just knew I was in for another shit show!
Adding Starbucks eGift card to the app on my iPhone
Knowing the high level of difficulty in front of me, I waited about 3 weeks before attempting to add the Starbucks eGift card to my account.
I clicked on the Starbucks app on my phone. It said something about an update or newer version (I don’t recall which), so I had to wait for it to do its thing.
Or not. I don’t know. Starbucks could just be screwing with me.
The last time I used the Starbucks app was in September, 2021, so just over 3 months earlier.
The app finishes doing its update in a reasonable amount of time. I have the eGift card information open on my computer and very carefully type in the number and pass code (PIN) onto the Starbucks app.
Wait for it.
The Starbucks app gives me an error message!
I shouldn’t expect anything different from the Starbucks app. Silly me to think it might actually work for a change and take the eGift card number on the first attempt.
One more try and I gave up on the Starbucks app.
Adding Starbucks eGift card to website account
I didn’t spend too long screwing around with the Starbucks app. Instead I decided to attempt logging onto my account on the Starbucks website.
Surprisingly, I was able to log in without too much difficulty.
I went to the section for managing my gift cards and was able to add in the new eGift card fairly easily.
In hindsight, maybe I should have been suspicious of how smoothly things appeared to be going.
Then I decided to clean up the cards on my account. I had $3.01 sitting on a card so I transferred the amount to my $15 card.
Who’s doing the math here?
That means I have $18.01 on my Starbucks account that I can spend in one of their shops.
Here’s the proof. I took a screen shot from my account.
So now I’m set and can go buy something from Starbucks!
The Starbucks shit show continues
I had a lot of running around to do and stopped in at Starbucks on my way home to buy a mocha with a couple of shots of raspberry syrup.
I’ve never ordered that from Starbucks before, but I was recently thinking about an excellent raspberry mocha McDonald’s had on the menu a few years ago.
I go inside to order the drink. I’m thinking I’ll buy a bakery item but the case was empty. And only 1pm. Wow! That’s pretty bad food management planning you got going on there Starbucks.
I pull up my Starbucks app to pay for it and notice the dollar amount still says $3.01. Just hasn’t updated yet, I’m thinking. The barista scans it, and then says: “There’s no money on this.”
What the fuck!!!????
How can that possibly be? I look at my phone and the $3.01 is gone now too!
Like that’s not embarrassing. Thanks Starbucks for screwing with me!
So I paid cash for the $6.04 mocha. Like holy shit. I wouldn’t even have bothered stopping at Starbucks if I was going to pay for it myself. I’m just trying to use up that damned gift card.
After I got home, I pulled up my account on Starbucks website and it still says $18.01.
Starbucks eGift “support” team
I phoned the Starbucks (no) support team for the eGift cards 877–496–3731. This is one of those nightmare automated systems where it’s another Starbucks exercise in frustration to try to get through to a real person.
I finally give up and send an email to StarbucksCardeGiftSupport@CashStar.com and hope they can figure out why my eGift card hasn’t transferred over to my Starbucks app.
I’m so fed up that I ask them to send me a real gift card in the amount showing on my account $18.01 because I’m pretty livid with their piece of shit Starbucks app.
I have not had a response yet from the “support” team at Starbucks, but once I do, I’ll update this post.
Starbucks makes a lot of money on unused gift cards
Merchants make a lot of money on unused gift cards. People get gift cards – real cards and eGift cards – and they never use them.
See this article about unused gift cards. There’s only one winner: The companies that sell the cards. Up to 20% of gift cards are never redeemed.
This is a real cash cow for Starbucks. They sell eGift cards that can not be added to accounts and redeemed for purchases in their restaurants. Starbucks counts on people like myself who eventually give up trying to access the money on their gift cards.
Let me get the word out there again. I don’t want Starbucks eGift cards!
Published by Cheryl @ The Lifestyle Digs on January 3, 2022.
January 7, 2022: It’s been 4 days. I contact Starbucks customer support to ask how long it takes for a response.
Their response? Can’t help. Go to this webpage https://starbucks.cashstar.com/self_service/v2/register/ and fill out the form.
January 9, 2022: I get a cut and paste email from Starbucks email@example.com with a link to look at my Starbucks egift card balance. Same day I fill in another form for support.
January 10, 2022: I get an email from Gabriela in the Starbucks eGift Card Support (snicker, yeah right) department firstname.lastname@example.org saying I didn’t give them my card number!
I email her back that I sure did provide it! She emailed back an apology and told me to email email@example.com. I’ve been busy with other things, and I’m pretty fed up with Starbucks, so it takes me awhile to get to it.
January 18, 2022: I email firstname.lastname@example.org the saga AGAIN. Will update the latest hoop Starbucks wants me to jump through when I get a response.
January 19, 2022: Mahveen from email@example.com appreciates I took the time to contact Starbucks and hopes me and my loved ones are doing well during these tough times. The word “appreciates” was used three times and for some reason that really annoys me!
Mahveen tells me to fill in the form at https://starbucks.cashstar.com/self_service/v2/register/ and fill out the form. Again! Or email StarbuckseGiftCardSupport@CashStar.com to resolve this issue. I’d appreciate it if Mahveen actually read what I said and I responded that Gabriela at StarbuckseGiftCardSupport@CashStar.com told me to email firstname.lastname@example.org to resolve this issue.
I respond to Mahveen later in the day that I’d like a Starbucks manager to contact me and if it doesn’t happen I’m filing a complaint with the Better Business Bureau to get their assistance for someone from Starbucks who can actually help me to contact me.
January 20, 2022: Sumaya, who can’t spell my name correctly so I’m returning the favor, claims a “specialist” will phone me in one to two days.
January 23, 2022: Still no phone call from Starbucks but today Paul from email@example.com has reached out to try to help me, but he didn’t carefully review my previous messages to Starbucks. He’d like a screenshot of the error message when I try to enter the gift card. That ship has sailed. I couldn’t enter the gift card on the app, but I was able to enter it on my account on the Starbucks website. Which I explain in every correspondence with Starbucks.
I email back the screenshots plus tell the story AGAIN of what happened and how I’d like to resolve it. No one from Starbucks listens.
January 24, 2022: Paul offers to send me a physical Starbucks gift card which is all I’ve asked for from the beginning! Yay!