Buying iTunes Gift Cards from PayPal: Beware

On December 20, I got an email from PayPal, saying that they were offering iTunes gift cards at 20% off. I promptly went to buy one: a $50 gift card for $40. It’s a no-brainer, right? I’m going to eventually spend that money on the iTunes Store, so why not save some?

Well, the sale process was as simple as usual with PayPal, but there was one exception. After they took my money, they displayed the following:

Your payment was successful, but we were unable to retrieve your iTunes Code information at the moment.

That’s all; you gave us money, but we can’t give you anything.

Several emails to PayPal resulted in no replies, so I had to file a “dispute.” Again, no reply from PayPal, so I had to escalate this to a “claim.” Finally, yesterday, I got an email from PayPal, saying:

We have concluded our investigation into your case and have decided in your

We were able to recover $40.00 USD and this amount has been credited to
you. Please allow five business days for this adjustment to be posted.

No apologies; it seems as though they treat disputes and claims with PayPal the same as with any other company. No explanation of what went wrong.

All I know is that I won’t be buying anything from them again. I’m now very hesitant to even use PayPal, but its ubiquity is hard to ignore.