The frothing you see at Starbucks is not the latte, but simply some customers who are steamed. According to the following report, an unknown number of Starbucks Rewards members experienced difficulties when attempting to reload their Starbucks prepaid cards.
You may want to hold off on reloading your Starbucks prepaid card for a while. A glitch is keeping members from putting money into their account, and in some cases charging their debit and credit cards for a reload that never shows up. Users who did try to reload their Starbucks cards in the last week should definitely check their debit and credit accounts.
The company’s customer service line has been burning up all week, but according to complaints on Twitter, most cardholders aren’t getting anywhere. Starbucks issued a tweet saying that it’s aware of the problem, but it hasn’t released a detailed statement about what caused the glitch or when it will be fixed.
Loading the Starbucks card requires a $25 minimum deposit, putting some members on the hook for $25 to $100 after several failed attempts to reload their cards. Cardholders can still reload their Starbucks cards with cash at any Starbucks location, but that kind of defeats the purpose of having the Starbucks card and the accompanying mobile app.
A earlier glitch in the United Kingdom charged Starbucks customers’ debit and cards for drinks months after they’d bought them, sometimes charging as much as £150 at a time! Not only has it been annoying for Starbucks’ customers, some of them have even been dragged into overdraft situations because of the glitch The Starbucks card is tied to the Starbucks Rewards program, and unsurprisingly, the glitch is leaving many caffeine-addicts putting off their coffee fix until Starbucks fixes the glitch and they can earn their coveted reward points again.
At last report, Starbucks is aware of the problem and fixing the reloading issue. Some very limited sampling revealed the reloading process to be working smoothly. It may not be surprising that the feature-rich qualities of the highly successful Starbucks mobile app and rewards program can be a bit challenging for their IT department. One thing is for sure—Starbucks loyalists are increasing their use of mobile order and pay, as well as in-store smartphone payments—so the card reloading glitch appears to be leaving no bitter aftertaste.
Overview by Raymond Pucci, Associate Director, Research Service at Mercator Advisory Group
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