PayPal Digital Gifts Order Failure Solved

Some Background:

Earlier this year, PayPal Digital Gifts emerged as a reseller to gift cards on eBay and it has been nice to have another vendor to purchase gift cards on eBay. The vendors being: GiftCardMall, SVMGiftCards, Cardency, and PayPal Digital Gifts. The first three really focus on physical gift cards, while PayPal’s store is mostly digital gift cards. For new gift card churners, PayPal’s deals will not help many due to the fact that many exchanges impose a “fee” for selling electronic gift cards. If you’re a bulk seller, it is not an issue.

I have largely written off PayPal Digital Gifts as a waste of time, despite all the frequent deals they keep posting, because I could never check out. Here is the familiar error message:


It’s an endless loop and leads to no where. You call up PayPal and eBay and they point fingers at each other and nothing works.


Buried in each listing, PayPal Digital Gifts actually has an unspecified velocity limit. Here it is verbatim with my emphasis:

To purchase a gift card (“Digital Gift”) from the PayPal Digital Gifts store (“Store”) you must have a valid U.S. PayPal account. Use of this website and the Store constitutes acceptance of the PayPal User Agreement, the PayPal Privacy Policy and any other legal agreements that apply to you as a PayPal account holder. PayPal reserves the right to delay or decline purchases for any reason. Limits may apply to the amount and number of Digital Gifts you can buy. Electronic delivery only. PayPal is not responsible for any loss or damage resulting from lost or stolen Digital Gifts or use without permission. PayPal makes no warranties, express or implied, with respect to the Digital Gifts and disclaims any warranty to the fullest extent available. No returns or refunds accepted. You may only send Digital Gifts using this Store to someone in the U.S. For a dispute with any Digital Gift retailer, you release PayPal (and its affiliates and subsidiaries, officers, directors, employees and agents) from any and all claims connected with such dispute.

That is why you are forced with a different payment method error message. There are actually 2 velocity limits that PayPal Digital Gifts imposes that you will soon see.

The Limits:

Velocity Limit #1

Way back in March, I ordered a lot of Staples gift cards without a hitch. I tried a few days later and kept hitting that brick wall. A few weeks later, I was able to order a Sears gift card after some PayPal intervention. I constantly tried ordering more gift cards, but it never worked and that is when I decided I will no longer purchase gift cards from PayPal, until the most recent Staples deal the 15% off $200 gift card.



I tried ordering the max of 5 at one time and had the error message and I was ready to give up again. That was when I decided to try ordering one at a time and all the orders went through. I then realized that was velocity limit number 1.



In the screenshot above, I ordered it as a separate transaction to play it safe because I haven’t had success in over a month. I believe the max denomination transaction is $500.



Screenshot Of 5 Separate Orders


Velocity Limit #2

The second velocity limit ties in with their terms. This one, I need your help on determining. You have a $1000 purchase limit with PayPal Digital Gifts. I don’t know when it resets, and this is where I need your help in crowdsourcing the reset time.

How do I know it’s $1000?

I purchased 5 discounted Staples gift cards for a total $850. Below are the screenshots that will show you as soon as I cross $1000 I get the dreaded error message.

With the $150 allowance, I set up the cart for just $150 and it will allow me to check out:




Here it is crossing $1000 total and I get that error message:



Another screenshot that displays crossing the $1000 purchase limit:



What You Need To Do

Now that you know the velocity limits, you will need to be cognizant of how much you purchase in that time frame. I will play around eBay in the next few days and keep track to see when my limit resets so I can make my next order with PayPal Digital Gifts. You can instantly tell if you can check out successfully or not is when you see the green “Confirm & Pay” button. If you see the blue “Continue” button, try playing around with your order total.


25 comments… add one
  • My data point: I made purchase in Paypal Digital Gifts in amount of $640 in July and $740 within 30 days. And I am capped at $250. So I suppose it’s for 30days instead of calendar month. (Although they sum up at $990, weird amount… But $255 cannot make through.)

  • Hi,

    I was trying to purchase 2 Hyatt gift cards but was unable to due to the error above. I called Paypal last night and I spoke to a nice lady. First of all, she verified my account with public information, then she asked me to try again with the registered credit card I had…but it still didn’t work. She asked me to add another form or payment and it could be another credit card. I did that and then I tried to check out and received a different message, “Confirm your payment method”. This confirmation would charge $1.95 to my credit card and once it processes in 2-3 days, I would be able to use it. Bummer, I have a trip to Hawaii in August 10 and I was trying to buy a couple of GCs to help reduce the hotel costs by 12.5%. In your experience, how long do the GCs take to arrive at your house? I live in Miami.

  • @JC I’ve run across that. I buy from SVM and GCM via ebay with AGC’s, but couldn’t with PPDG. I had to have a verified payment method so I had to do the $1.95 thing. HOWEVER, the code to get it cleared was on my pending transactions for my CC, so I got it cleared that day. I didn’t have to wait for the charge to post. This was with an Arrival +, not sure how it’ll work with others.

    But, the Hyatt cards are sold by SVM, so not sure why you’re getting the error. What you could do is buy an ebay gc via gyft, then buy the Hyatt cards with that. SVM usually has the cards to me within one week.

  • If we could solve this, I would seriously owe you. I have spent so much time trying to figure this out, and on the phone with them, which is absolutely infuriating.

    A list of my (successful) transactions is at the end of this. These are the prices I paid; in many cases the actual GC value is higher due to their promotions.

    I can’t remember exactly how often (until 7/14) I got the errors that you’re seeing, but they may have been there occasionally. Starting on 7/14 I got them all the time.

    Quick recap of my calls with them:

    – On 7/20, tried to get the Staples cards, and nothing would go through at all. I called, and it wasn’t too hard to get someone on the line. She could see the orders I was trying to place. She asked me to log out while she “tried something”. Tried again and still got the same error. She explained that there was some sort of “fraud block” on my account due to spending patterns, like when a CC company blocks your card for suspected fraud. I said fine, and asked what to do to get this block off my account. She put me on hold and came back with a few questions (you have probably had to answer these at one time or another) – e.g. “which of the following streets have you had an association with in the past?”, “in what city did you share an address with so-and-so?”. After answering these, she asked me to try again, and my order went through.

    – Later that day I tried to place a smaller ($80) order, and to my surprise I got the same error. I called again, went through the same thing, and everything she tried didn’t work. Asked to speak to a supervisor. He gave me the same run-around, and was mumbling about my “IP address being untrusted” and how he’d make it trusted. I don’t know if this was complete BS or not (I get the same errors regardless of which computer/network I’m on). He said to log out and do not try again for at least an hour. I tried again the following day and still go the errors.

    Things I’ve observed about the errors:

    Whenever I’d go to check out, I would not have the error message – it would seem as though I could complete the purchase with my default paypal payment method (checking account). Of course I didn’t want to do this (I wanted to use ebay GC, or at least my Chase Ink). But changing anything about the payment (either adding a GC, switching from checking account to CC in the box, even switching from one linked checking account to another) would cause the error to pop up.

    I did NOT try purchasing the GC with the default payment method (checking account) because I didn’t want to use that account to buy these, but in retrospect I should have tried. I at least did have a button to click (though I suspect I would have gotten an error after clicking it). Now Paypal Digital Gifts “is away” so I can’t try.

    4/8 – $100 x1
    4/21 – $75 x2
    4/27 – $40 x5
    5/1 – $47.50 x2
    5/21 – $21.75 x3, $40 x2, $85 x2
    6/3 – $65 x3
    6/4 – $95 x2
    6/12 – $75 x2
    6/24 – $100 x1
    6/26 – $100 x2, $25 x1 (had a 10% off coupon for these)
    7/14 – $50 x13 – 2 orders of 5 each, then one order of 3. This is when I started getting into trouble, not surprisingly.
    7/20 – $170 x2, $21.25 x3 (After calling)

  • On your $150 attempted checkout where you say it will allow you, what happens if you attempt to add an ebay GC or change the payment method?

    I frequently get the screen you’re seeing, but when I try to pay via a method I want to use, I get the error.

    Then sometimes I just get the blue “continue” button right off the bat. I can’t test it now but I believe if I remove the items from my cart, then re-add them and try to check out again, I get the “good” (i.e. your $150) box – but it’s not really good because as soon as I change the payment method I get the error message and it changes to the “continue” button.

  • Ok, looks like it’s letting me try to check out again (Paypal Digital Gifts is back from being “away”).

    I get the box that you are shown in your $150 screenshot (with the green “Confirm and Pay” button), but when hit that button I get a similar error (I just tried to use my checking account).

    Are you sure that you are really able to complete your purchase?

    • Sure, I will process a set of gift cards for the cause and find out later tonight

      • As a follow up, just bought $150 and attempted $50 or $25 and I can’t check out, having the blue continue box

  • Thanks everyone for the data! Let’s keep it coming so we can find out how to fix it and stop wasting all that time

  • A few other interesting data points:

    I tried adding some other items to my cart with the Paypal Digital Gifts (PDG) GC:

    – first was a small ($4) cell phone accessory. Didn’t change anything.
    – next I added a physical $25 eBay GC from giftcardmall. It let me checkout! I changed my payment to my ink card, applied an ebay GC (to pay with) and completed the purchase (some was charged to my ink card, and the rest from the ebay GC).

    I thought I found the trick. So I tried again – the same thing (PDG GC + eBay giftcardmall GC). Checked out, but ONLY using my ink.

    Here’s the crazy thing: it let me checkout, but instead of bringing me to the order confirmation page, I got a page that said my payment was taking longer than expected to process, and they would email me if the payment didn’t go through.

    A few minutes later, I get an email, but only confirming the order for the eBay GC. The PDG card was still in my cart. Checked with Chase and I was only charged $25. The crooks sold me the thing I didn’t want, and wouldn’t let me buy the thing I wanted!

  • I have had the same problem with buying gift cards from PPDG. I have tried to use eBay GCs and been denied, even though it is a mystery to me why that is a fraud issue. The only transaction of any size that went through was for 1500 from my linked checking account for cameras. Went through without a problem. Tried to buy 850 of Staples gift cards (tried CC, GC and Checking account), and could not get it to go thru regardless of payment method. I am at the point that I don’t even bother any more to try to buy from PPDG. I have experienced the same frustration with no solution after numerous phone calls to eBay and PP.

    Here is a list of my transactions:

    Jul 20, 2015 Attempted Payment To PayPal Inc 850 USD for Staples GCs – declined
    Jul 15, 2015 Payment To Blutekusa Inc -$999.98 USD (GCs)
    Jul 15, 2015 Payment To PayPal Inc -$85.00 USD (purchased GC with GC); tried to buy another one and declined.
    Jul 14, 2015 Payment To Get It Digital Inc.-$1,499.95 USD (echeck ffrom linked acct)
    Jul 8, 2015 Payment To Platinum Cap -829.99 (combo of CC & GC)

    From this listing, I think the problem arises when you try to buy something from PPDGs. Doesn’t seem to have any velocity of amount limits on other purchases.

  • @Marshall – agreed, I’m close to giving up. Maybe I will try again in a few weeks. On the phone they implied that repeated failed attempts would lengthen the block period.

    For the hell of it, I just sent a message to PPDG, playing dumb and saying “please, I want to spend a lot of money with you, but paypal won’t let me” (for all I know PPDG and Paypal are the same thing and the idiots who tell me they are “removing the untrusted block on my IP address and try again in no less than one hour” are the ones getting the PPDG ebay messages).

    What’s most frustrating is that they are costing themselves a crapload of money, and have no desire to do anything about it.

  • In my case, I started with 2 Hyatt GCs for $350 and it didn’t work. I tried with one for $175 and it still didn’t work…I kept on trying to no avail and decided to contact Paypal…The guy said a security was triggered on my account because I was connecting through a VPN and location was NJ. I’m from Miami…

  • I too encountered the above error few days back. But when spoke to CSR, it’s all due to fraud alert on your account. CSR should be able to reset it but it take 24 hours after reset before you can further purchase.

    Another thing I encountered was, There is a monthly limit of $ 500 dollars that you can buy from ebay if the account is a new one. any purchase after this wont allow you to use the ebay redemption codes. work around for this, add a debit card to your paypal and verify your ebay account. where your buying limit will be extended to $ 5000 for each month

  • Hi Everyone,

    First-time poster, longtime reader. I sympathize with everyone’s issues buying PPDG. It is real hit or miss whether I get the 70245 Error Message “Something went wrong. Please try to check out again.” Sometimes I get it, sometimes I don’t.

    My question is how are you able to buy PPDG with a credit card? For the times I don’t get an error message my only option is to pay for my PPDG with my registered checking account in PayPal.

    I don’t see an option to pay with a credit card. (I see the way to pay with an EBay gift card but I don’t have those) I have my INK credit card verified in my PayPal account. I just can’t figure out to use it.

    I’m not supposed to hit the green “Confirm and Pay” button in order to bring up the option to pay with a credit card am I? Or do you need to have certain PayPal “status” in order to pay with credit card? (I have a standard account, not a business account). Finally, I know DOC has made the suggestion of verifying your PayPal account with a SSN on his blog, which I refuse to do (hopefully I don’t have to do this!!)

    Finally, I totally understand that the MS community does not like to give out secrets to avoid killing a deal. That is not my intent here; I’m not an expert (as you can probably tell) or trying to game the system: I’m just trying to buy a couple Southwest GCs at a discount so I can save a few bucks getting my kid home for the holidays.

    Thank you in advance for your help!

  • I think everyone’s velocity limit is different. I was able to get in all those ebay gift cards in one account for over $1000 now while another family member’s account stuck at less than $500. Both accounts are verified with bank accounts loaded.

  • 3/1/16 Single purchase of 4 gift cards for a total cost of $340
    3/13/16 Single purchase of 1 gift card for a total cost of $100 minus a $20 coupon code from ebay
    3/14/16 Single purchase of 2 gift cards for a total cost of $170
    3/15/16 Separate purchases of 3 gift cards for a cost of $42.50 each. Unable to buy the 4th one (limit of 4). I had to buy those three individually (after reading this blog)

    This month I am up to a total of $737.50 but cannot purchase another $42.50.

    • Very strange – I wonder if they counted it as pre discount price as part of your limit?

  • I’ve been able to get paypal to remove it so the transaction goes through. However, their fix usually only lasts that transaction and then you get the hold back the next one. I agree it’s against some kind of undefined limit or IP address. I’ve had my transaction blocked at work and then went through at home.
    You just have to escalate high enough to the paypal security team to get it removed. Be prepared for at least 30 minutes on the phone. I went so far as to open a BBB case about this and now they have noted on my account what to do for future reps to see. However, I spent hours with them on the phone to get this far. I even got the local news involved from 7 on your side, but they shied away from pursuing it publicly since paypal was crying it was a security/fraud prevention problem. I disagreed with the news that the only fraud was paypal keeping me from redeeming my gift cards, but they didn’t see it that way.

    • Yep I’ve had that work for me too. Calling them usually only works for one transaction, but time consuming to take care of it.

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  • I bought some staples gift cards on ebay (Staples deal the 15% off $200 gift card.),however i don’t know how to use them ,can you teach me?? leumas6891@gmail.com


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