Dust off Your eBay Gift Cards: eBay Reverses New Rules Temporarily (Buy Gift Cards with Gift Cards!)


ebay gift card rules

eBay Gift Card Rules

Last month eBay instituted new eBay gift card rules with no notice including new restrictions on how gift cards can be used. The big new restriction in place is a doozy. eBay gift cards can no longer be used to purchase other gift cards.

Since many people had purchased thousands of dollars worth of eBay gift cards just to purchase other gift cards, this hurt. In fact many people were stuck with cards and felt that eBay should have given notice of this change. Apparently some of them complained to the California Attorney General and now eBay is responding.

Many of the people who complained received a call from eBay letting them know that the rules are being rolled back temporarily. From September 13 through October 13, you will be able to use eBay gift cards to purchase merchant gift cards. After that the rules revert back.


This is good news for those of you who are stuck with wads of eBay colored plastic and hopefully it is a lesson learned for a company that often operates NOT in the best interest of their customer. Yes, they do have the right to make such a change, but to do it without notice is not only wrong, but judging from how they are responding, perhaps (and I don’t know since I am not an attorney) it is illegal or maybe just somewhat gray.

For more info on what people are being told by eBay, see: this Reddit thread. HT: Doctor of Credit

The responses below are not provided or commissioned by any advertiser or bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser. It is not any advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.


  1. I tried buying gift cards on a TX eBay account with eBay gift cards today and it said “This code can’t be applied to some of your items.” I tried four unused codes and eBay wouldn’t allow it today on 9/13. Does this resumption only apply to California, or the US?

    • I tried today and it wouldn’t let me apply ebay gift cards to buy a gift card either. Anyone else had any luck in getting them to work?

  2. I have been trying all day and can’t get an Ebay gift card to work on any gift card on the site, whether private seller or PAypal Digital. What gives?

  3. Of course, the gift cards you are purchasing can be stolen by crooks at any time since they have hacked into paypal’s gift card system. We know that thousands of gift cards were hacked in August, who knows if they still are.

  4. Then why cant we complain to the Attorney General and ask why cant use gift cards to buy gift cards in a retail store? Whats the difference???

    • I think the difference is that eBay changed its policy without notice. Any business can establish a policy as long as it’s adequately disclosed in advance and not readically changed after the fact.

    • The difference is, you know the retailer’s gift card policy not permitting buying 3rd party gift cards at the time of your purchase if you decide to buy thier GC. In eBay’s case, most people expected eBay GCs can be used to buy 3rd party GCs at the time of their purchase and later eBay changed the terms to forbid the use buyers had expected without notice. Even eBay changed the terms with notice, eBay is still in in breach of agreement.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here