Amazon Subscribe & Save - payment taken early and with no notification.

My first repeated order with this service is due in 2 weeks, but I discovered today that Amazon have already taken payment for it, without sending me any notification. They say they send an email before each order goes out; I assumed this would be in advance of the payment (and also that the payment would be closer to the order date than 2 weeks before), but apparently not. I'm not up for companies taking payments of variable amounts from my account without informing me in advance, so I will be cancelling this and will know better than to use the service again.
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  • rach_k
    rach_k Posts: 2,233
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    Did you check your spam folder?  They always send me an email called something like 'review your upcoming S&S order' with a link to look at what you've ordered.  I have been using S&S for years and I can't think of a time they haven't done it.

    It's not usually 2 weeks in advance, more like a week, but I get monthly deliveries.  If you've opted for a longer repeat period, maybe 2 weeks is more usual.
  • I'm assuming I'll get the email closer to the delivery date (it wasn't in my spam folder) - they've just taken payment in advance of sending it for some reason. I would have cancelled this particular subscription anyway, as it turns out I don't need it as frequently as every 6 months, but this has put me off using the service for anything else in the future.
  • olliebean
    olliebean Posts: 583
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    edited 15 February 2022 at 10:43AM
    I got the email today, 3 days before the last date to cancel or amend the order, 9 days before the delivery is due, and 5 days after payment was taken. The email says "Your payment will be processed on: Saturday, Feb 19," and if I look on my Amazon account it's showing as a pending payment, but the effect is no different from actually taking the payment - my balance has gone down and there's less available for other purchases.
  • jon81uk
    jon81uk Posts: 3,749
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    olliebean said:
    I got the email today, 3 days before the last date to cancel or amend the order, 9 days before the delivery is due, and 5 days after payment was taken. The email says "Your payment will be processed on: Saturday, Feb 19," and if I look on my Amazon account it's showing as a pending payment, but the effect is no different from actually taking the payment - my balance has gone down and there's less available for other purchases.
    In your online banking is it showing as pending or actually left your account?


  • It's coming out of my Amazon gift card balance, where it is showing as pending but in effect has already been taken off my balance.
  • maisie_cat
    maisie_cat Posts: 2,054
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    I've been using S&S for some time and always receive an email in time to skip or cancel.
    It's also a good opportunity to see how much the price has risen since the previous delivery.
  • olliebean said:
    My first repeated order with this service is due in 2 weeks, but I discovered today that Amazon have already taken payment for it, without sending me any notification. They say they send an email before each order goes out; I assumed this would be in advance of the payment (and also that the payment would be closer to the order date than 2 weeks before), but apparently not. I'm not up for companies taking payments of variable amounts from my account without informing me in advance, so I will be cancelling this and will know better than to use the service again.
    olliebean said:
    It's coming out of my Amazon gift card balance, where it is showing as pending but in effect has already been taken off my balance.

    I think your OP is a bit misleading because you never mentioned it's come from your gift card balance and you just said "account".

    Amazon always send an email reminding you if it's coming from your bank account but it sounds like it's different if you have allowed them to take payment from your gift card balance. Personally i don't really see this as an issue because you can just set it so it doesn't get taken from gift cards in the future and if you cancel then they will just put the money back onto the gift card and can do this immediately unlike a refund to a bank account.

  • jon81uk
    jon81uk Posts: 3,749
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    olliebean said:
    It's coming out of my Amazon gift card balance, where it is showing as pending but in effect has already been taken off my balance.

    Then what is the issue? If you want to spend that gift card balance then cancel the S&S and spend it on something else. 
    If you want the S&as delivery then you can’t spend the gift card on anything else as it is needed to fund the other order.

    Amazon are ensuring you have the means to pay for the subscription by ring-fencing that money now.
  • Sorry if I was misleading. My Amazon gift card balance is going up and down all the time with many of the surveys I do paying in that form, so I think of it just as one of my accounts and keep track of the balance in the same way. I hope you are right that Amazon would do this differently if the money was coming from my credit card or bank account (although I have had issues before when they place a hold of £1 the first time you use a prepaid card, and you then can't spend that £1 until the hold expires 2 weeks later even though the payment has not technically been taken - so it wouldn't surprise me if they would do the same in advance of a S&S order). The situation was that I was expecting to receive a notification before payment was taken, from whichever of my accounts, and this did not happen - my instinctive reaction was, that's not something they should be doing; if it's a predictable amount, like a Prime subscription, then fine, but if it's a variable amount I'd expect to receive advance notification of the precise cost each time.
  • jon81uk
    jon81uk Posts: 3,749
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    olliebean said:
    Sorry if I was misleading. My Amazon gift card balance is going up and down all the time with many of the surveys I do paying in that form, so I think of it just as one of my accounts and keep track of the balance in the same way. I hope you are right that Amazon would do this differently if the money was coming from my credit card or bank account (although I have had issues before when they place a hold of £1 the first time you use a prepaid card, and you then can't spend that £1 until the hold expires 2 weeks later even though the payment has not technically been taken - so it wouldn't surprise me if they would do the same in advance of a S&S order). The situation was that I was expecting to receive a notification before payment was taken, from whichever of my accounts, and this did not happen - my instinctive reaction was, that's not something they should be doing; if it's a predictable amount, like a Prime subscription, then fine, but if it's a variable amount I'd expect to receive advance notification of the precise cost each time.
    Payment hasn't been taken, they have just ring-fenced the predicted amount. You will still get notification before payment is taken.
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