If you’ve traded in clothes for store credit, sold your once precious items in a yard sale, and swapped books with friends, why not try dusting off your electronics to trade them in for an Amazon gift card?
Just like practically everyone you know, you probably have acquired an excess of electronics over the years. With every new iPhone that premieres, an older version gets packed away into a box, never to be touched again until you move or feel like reminiscing.
That doesn’t have to be it’s fate! You can take advantage of the Amazon Trade-In Program to exchange your devices, electronics, cell phones and even games and turn them into Amazon credit.
The program, which launched in 2010, makes it easy to exchange your tech. Thousands of items are eligible and more are constantly added so that you can continuously utilize the benefits. Amazon’s Trade-In Program is an easy and effective way to receive Amazon credit while clearing out your storage!
What is the Amazon Trade-In Program?
The Amazon Trade-In Program is a program created to allow customers to exchange electronic devices and games for an Amazon gift card.
The idea is simple. You trade in an eligible item, receive a quote for it’s determined value and ship it to Amazon. Once your item is shipped, you will receive an Amazon gift card within 10 days for the same amount of the trade-in.
Is Your Item Eligible for Amazon Trade-In?
All items applicable for trade-in must match the exact version listed in the Trade-In store.
When submitting, you will answer questions about the item including, most importantly, it’s condition. There is a list of minimum condition criteria including:
- The device must be owned by you, not financed through a third party
- The device must match product specifications exactly, including carrier, size, color, title and version
- If applicable, the device must be unlocked and unregistered from all online accounts
The condition of your item must be good, very good or new. The device has to operate to its best ability, with no unexpected issues, like not being able to hold a charge.
The item must also be considered excellent in terms of its appearance. This might actually be a more difficult standard to uphold. All of our phone screens have cracks, right? Suffice to say, your device needs to be pristine with the exception of normal wear and tear. That means little to no cracks, breaks, dents, corrosion and water damage.
If your item does not qualify, all hope is not lost. Amazon also has an option for a “Downgraded Item.”
How Do I Use Amazon Trade-In?
All you need to start using Amazon Trade-In is an Amazon account. If you follow the steps correctly, you will be able to take full advantage of this program. There is a lot of information on Amazon about the program, so much so that it can be overwhelming, which is why we’ve condensed it down to these simple steps.
1. Determine if your item is eligible
The home page for Amazon trade-ins lists categories for devices. This includes tablets, bluetooth speakers, wireless routers, cell phones and gaming among others.
If you own an item that Amazon will accept, and it is matched exactly, you are instructed to answer questions about it’s condition. This is really basic. I tried an item and there were only three questions:
- Does this device power on and it is fully functional?
- Are there any cracks or physical defects on the device?
- Are all original power adapters and antennas included?
After clicking a simple yes or no, an instant quote popped up.
2. Receive a quote
Amazon will quote you immediately to determine the amount of your gift card. Keep in mind that this is not the final value you will receive. Amazon can only determine the value once they receive your item.
From here, you have two options to choose from in the case that the quote differs once your item is received: accept the adjusted value (which can be significantly lower than the quote above) or have Amazon return your item for free. Trade-in value is confirmed once the item is received by Amazon. If this trade-in value is less than previously quoted, you will be notified and have the option to cancel your trade-in. Items that are cancelled will be returned to you at no cost.
3. Ship your item
You will be able to ship your trade-in item for free by printing a shipping label through UPS.
On this page, you may also have the option of Instant Payment. If your item is eligible, you will be instantly paid by Amazon, provided that you ship your item on time and that you are not lying about the condition. This is a convenient but risky option if you are not sure whether Amazon will adjust your value.
You will be given a deadline to ship your trade-in items which will be between 7-14 days after your submission.
4. Receive your gift card
Once your trade-in item is received and the value is determined, an Amazon gift card credit will be applied to your account.
Note that it can take up to ten business days for your item to reach Amazon. Once it is received however, it should only take two days for your credit to be applied. At any time, you can check your trade-in account to see the status of your item.
What’s the Catch?
Of course, there were a few noteworthy items in the small print, which are listed below.
- There is a limited max value of $1800 per trade-in order
- You must ship from the U.S.
- You must have a physical address in the U.S.
- Your device must be unregistered and unlocked with your personal info backed up
- Amazon can cancel the trade-in at any time and ship the item back to you at no cost. You can also cancel the trade-in any time before shipping
If you’re curious and looking to spend some time reading up on the program straight from the source, I recommend making yourself a cup of coffee, and visiting the page listing Amazon’s full terms and conditions.
After reading through all of the information, and even giving it a try ourselves, we recommend the Amazon Trade-In Program. It’s a great way to turn your excess electronics into Amazon credit and, as the cycle goes, then buy all new devices!