Here Are The Top Reasons Why Your Visa Gift Card Not Working

If your Visa gift card is not working then there might be some reasons responsible for that. These reasons may vary from small to big and they can be sorted out based on their complexity. The small and very common reasons related to your Visa gift card not working is that the card has not been successfully activated, the card processing machine is not working properly, card balance is over, among so many. However, apart from the small causes, there are also big reasons which affect the working of your visa gift card that you should know as well.

If you are also dealing with such kind of issues and your card is not working then you can also take help from customer service. However, we would advise you to make some attempts by yourself for making your hard work and even if you didn’t succeed in that then contact the customer service and their official representatives will help you out. Before calling customer service, you should check the below-mentioned reasons for your Visa gift card not working, these may help you out to some extent.

Gift Card Not Activated

The most common reason for your Visa Gift Card for not being working is that you haven’t activated your card yet. The Visa gift cards are basically linked to the bank accounts that usually must be activated so that it can receive the transactions. If your card is inactive then it’s obvious that the payment will be failed since the allied bank accounts are not linked yet to your card and therefore, it’s not ready to be used. This plastic card doesn’t have any value until an account is linked with it or the cards have been loaded with a certain amount.

Purchase Amount More than the Gift Card Balance

As we have explained in the above point, the Visa gift cards are linked to the cardholder’s bank accounts and that also cannot be overspent. If you are making a purchase that is greater than the amount available on your card at that time, the card will most probably decline. In such cases you can also make the payment, however, it will be the partial one. Simply ask the cashier to make the partial payment, make half payment using your Visa gift card and the remaining amount by another mode of payment.

Using the Visa Gift Card at a Restaurant

When you make the payments at restaurants, it may run an authorization transaction of 20 per cent automatically which will be more than your total bill. It also makes sure that the gift card you are holding has sufficient funds to even cover a gratuity. So, if in case this dollar value is more than the card balance, then the transaction is most probably going to decline. At that time, you should ask the cashier to charge for the bill amount only and not for the gratuity or else to decrease the amount of the bills by 20 per cent and then again go back over the transaction.

Visa Gift Card

Using the Visa Gift Card at a Gas Station

When you use your Visa gift card at a gas station pump, at that time the dollar amount of the transaction is unidentified. So due to this reason, the gas station pumps usually pre-authorize $75 or even more on the card that has been swiped at their space. However, if the amount of pre-authorization is more than the value of the card, then the transaction may get declined. Therefore, you should pay inside in order to avoid such hold placed on your gift card. Tell the associated to only charge the sum you insist on.

Using the Visa Gift Card at Hotel

When it comes to the hotel, usually the hotels ask for your card while check-in and the reason behind this are to cover incidental charges, if any in future. The incidental charges are of 30 per cent or more, therefore, your card will automatically hold up while check-in along with your staying charges. Therefore, you should avoid this scenario you should check-in by using your credit card but in the end, you can pay the final bill via your gift card while check-out from the hotel.

Using the Visa Gift Card Online

For the online transaction using the gift card, there is only one problem related to that. And that issue is that the billing information should match the details that you have provided for your card. If this billing information for example—your name, address etc. doesn’t match the card details then the transaction may decline. In order solve this issue, you must make sure while registering your card with the card issuer or bank that the name and address that are allied to the account are current. This can be done through the website, app, or through their customer service number.

Making International Purchase

However, there are some gift cards that can be used easily for making international payments but mostly the Visa gift cards that have been issued in the United States are only to be used in the United States and not outside that. If you are making any purchase that has been outside the U.S. or even to the non-U.S. web portals or else by telephone, then your transaction may decline automatically. So, in order to avoid such an issue, make sure you are purchasing items or paying for any kind of services within the United States or the prescribed area mentioned in the card.


Here, we have listed all the major reasons for Visa gift card not working and these are also the common issues which cardholders don’t realize until the transaction is declined. Therefore, with the help of these points, you will get a clear picture of the use of gift cards and how it usually works. Even after trying to solve the things on your own, you didn’t succeed in it then you can call the issuing company or bank’s customer care representative in order to find out the main reason for your card is not working.

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