Got Scammed after Purchasing a $400 Gift Card off Gumtree

Just thought to share my pain

Bought an IKEA gift card. $500 face value for $400 from Gumtree. Met the guy in CBD 2 months ago and confirmed the value on the card at the time.

I paid him cash. I knew this was risky but tried to do the best due diligence I could. He refused a copy of ID, but reassured me. He was a nice mid 20's Asian international student.

Anyway, across the last 2 months since buying, I've been double checking the value in the gift card, pretty regularly (on IKEA official website). No dramas at all.

Today went to purchase something finally, and sure enough, value was $0.

Called IKEA. They can't help except advise that the balance was spent just 3 days ago!

Argh! I last checked the balance a week ago and everything was all good. And sure enough, when I go to call the original number of the guy I purchased from, it's disconnected now :(

Tldr. Got scammed $400 and I'm pretty sad tbh. It's my fault.

Comments

  • +39

    I would only buy giftcard off Gumtree if I am going to use it straight away. On the spot if possible. Why wait for 2 months?!

    • -5

      Yeah you're right. I made an exception to this case because the deal was so good

      • +5

        For him….

        • -1

          Ya I was waiting for a sale. Like the intra $25 off that came online today!!

          • +3

            @activ8newbs: that sucks man, should've used it straight away. I probably wouldnt buy a giftcard second hand unless i needed it right away.

      • +7

        How can someone use a giftcard, don't they have a pin that is under a scratch thingy? That you have to scratch so you can enter the pin ?
        Don't tell me that you bought a card with the pin protection scratched off ? ( visible )

  • -1

    That sucks, but don’t worry, karma will get back to bite him

    • hi this is immigration, your visa is cancelled

  • +6

    I would never buy a gift card from gumtree.

  • +17

    Seller must've thought you forgot about it after that long and used it for you! lol

    • +6

      This might be the case, if they had intended to scam from the start they would have rushed to redeem the cards.
      Still a scumbag move of course, they had no right to use it even if was expiring

      • Unless like 1 minute before expiry….or ready cart, 5 seconds before expiry midnight and click purchase.

    • -1

      This reason. Have you tried to contact the seller to see if the seller can confirmd he or she use it?

      • +1

        You obviously missed this part:

        And sure enough, when I go to call the original number of the guy I purchased from, it's disconnected now

    • -1

      That's what I was suspecting as well. Seller mobile is disconnected. I have no other contact :(

      • +1

        Gumtree contact/Email?

        • Awesome idea!!! Just tried that now…not sure why that didn't cross my mind before. I have low hopes, but just tried that now!

          • +1

            @activ8newbs: they won't reply to this on gumtree either - from my own experience

  • +5

    I'm assuming the card didn't have it's PIN securely covered in that silver coloured stuff that you rub off (like on scratchies-lottery cards)?

    As don't most cards have both a card number and then also a PIN that you need (for online purchases or also am sure you can manual override instore).

    Appears from online searches they do have this covered PIN - so was this already scratched off or was it still covered/intact?

    PS. Sucks to be scammed, sorry to hear it - so hopefully no victim shaming in your thread.

  • +3

    He was a nice mid 20's Asian international * student *.

    Well I see the problem.

    • +7

      He refused a copy of ID

      Bigger problem/red flag, than being a nice student.

      • +2

        Do people actually give copies of the D/L when selling things. I wouldn't want to even if the number is covered up.

        • +3

          I've never heard of anyone giving up ID when selling private stuff.

      • +3

        only a dumbass will give their ID to strangers.

        • OP meets smart scammer.

    • I thought it was the other adjective to be the issue

  • Pricey lesson learnt. Personally been scammed once on gumtree so I know how ya feel, the rest of the time it is a decent platform to sell and buy

  • Ouch! I feel your pain :(
    But maybe it is a good lesson for the future
    Be kind to yourself…

  • +3

    Bit of a long con to be honest. 2 months?

    • +1

      Yeah lots of assumptions are being made here.

  • +4

    Will you be needing another gift card OP? I can do the same $400 for nothing deal.

  • +6

    CASH ONLY FOR GUMTRE-

    oh…

    • +4

      I don't know what to believe in anymore!

  • Anyway, across the last 2 months since buying, I've been double checking the value in the gift card, pretty regularly (on IKEA official website). No dramas at all.

    I'm sure they have been doing the same, then after 2 months of you not redeeming it, used it.

    Never buy these things unless you plan to use them ASAP.

    • +2

      Never buy these things unless you plan to use them ASAP.

      Fixed that for you .

      • Yeah that is true…. I never buy them, not worth the 'hassle' as in most cases people don't offer much of a discount vs the risk.

  • +7

    Things people do to save a measly $100. Jesus

    • +3

      Imagine if this was a game at a casino.

      "One in five chance of winning $500! Minimum bet $400!"

    • +3

      Things people do to save a measly $100. Jesus

      I thought this was ozbargain?

    • +3

      Mate some members get excited over a 5% saving.

      • +3

        WHERE ?

        • Me 1% is good enough hehe .
          But must be large purchase in store if from Scumtree .

    • and OP was waiting for another $25 off sale to spend it lmao. the risk of losing the whole $400 amount was not spending an extra $25 apparently

  • +1

    Cash on collection - this use case has failed in this scenario… in the form of a delayed pain.

  • Maybe your missus has used them for her secret boyfriend? Considering that you can check them, I assumed anyone in your household can see and use them.

    *not detective Sherlock

  • ah well cheaper than the fine you coulda got for breaking lockdown for this stup!d sh!t. look on the bright side eh

    • Grow up

      • +2

        i took your advice, thanks man
        i am 12 now

  • Obviously someone has used the card in a fraudulent manner. It may or may not be the guy that sold the card… ??
    Can you report something like this to the police? It would be easy for them to get the details from Ikea for the purchase it was used for and maybe catch a crook?

  • +2

    Don't buy gift cards off Gumtree. Pretty simple.
    No sympathy here mate. Next time just use common sense

  • +1

    Virtual currencies like gift cards are one of the biggest legal scams used by retailers to make quick and easy profits.

    Billions of dollars worth of GC go unspent every year.

    "Oftentimes, they go unused — whether we lose them, forget we have them, let them expire, or fail to spend the full amount that was gifted."

    Between 2005 and 2015 alone, unredeemed gift card balances amounted to an estimated $45.7B.
    https://thehustle.co/what-happens-to-unused-gift-cards/

    The retailers can after a while book the cost of the GC as profits without providing a good or service.

    Avoid being scammed next time by paying the retailer with cash.

  • +1

    Are you 100% sure the card didn’t just expire? The expiry wasn’t printed anywhere on my ikea gift card, I couldn’t access it through the app or online, the only way I could get it was by purchasing something in store… the expiry was on the bottom of the receipt.