Google Play gift cards

The Google Play gift card is an elusive beast. Supposedly available at big box stores like Walmart and Target, specialty stores like GameStop, even grocery stores and electronics stores like Kroger or Frys, but they sure are hard to find. At my local Target they had some in stock at the beginning of November, but right now they are all sold out. Of course sold out matters more when you know how many you started with, for my purposes it's a bummer because I can't find any gift cards to toss in the stockings. Phil had to drive to a few stores to find some as well. 

Now we understand how (and why) Google struggles selling stuff. They aren't a retailer, and certainly have a lot to learn about becoming one. But Walmart knows a thing or two about selling  -- especially low-priced impulse stuff like gift cards. If they aren't on the shelf at Walmart, it means there are none to put on the shelf. Items sitting in the back don't make any money for the storefront. 

Hopefully, this means demand is high and they are selling a good many of them. Alternatively, it may mean that they are selling all they can get, which is very few. Or maybe I just live in some little bubble where Google Play gift cards are all the rage and they are available everywhere else. I don't know, so I'm asking. Hit the poll (in the sidebar to the right or after the break) and let me know.

Before we go, last week's poll needs a look.

Are 1080p screens the next big thing?


Looks like folks want some of the sweet 1080p. I have a feeling it will soon become the norm.


Reader comments

This week's sidebar poll: The search for Google Play gift cards


They were elusive for the first month or so, but they are readily available in my area (Northeastern PA) at stores such as Gamestop, Target, Wal-Mart, and I believe even KMart too. In fact, I just picked up a $15 one today. Target in particular has them in several locations including at nearly every register and underneath the Android smartphone end-cap in Electronics.

I guess Michigan must be left out of the Google Play craze. I've been to multiple Kmart, Target, Walmart, Gamestop, 7-11, and Speedway locations and all of them have had massive amounts of iTunes cards and right next to them were loads of Google Play gift cards.

If they are that elusive in other places maybe we should start offering purchase and shipping services to other users in areas that can't get them.

They sell them everywhere! They even have them in Walmart. I don't know how someone could not see them, if they've been to the gift card section recently.

I have seen them at Target, Best Buy & Sams Club here in the Mpls/St. Paul area. I purchased one ($10) and plan on purchasing a few more as gifts.

I see a ton of them at various retailers near me. Was just mentioning to my fiance the other night that they are popping up everywhere that we shop. It must be area-dependent. I could go out right now and pick up quite a bunch if I wanted to.

I see them all over the place in Central Ohio...all the electronics, big box and grocery stores have plenty of them. In fact, my parents gave one to me as a birthday gift last week!

Walmart had them in Anaheim Ca no 10 just 25 Target down the street had some 10 and 25 I buy them there Target charge card 5% off so 9.50 for the 10.00 and 23.75 for the 25.00 any thing i can save

There are HUNDREDS on the shelves at my local Walmart and Gamestop..LITERALLY! I see them so much that I read something lie this and scratch my head.

I have seen plenty of them at the Target's in my area in the north eastern part of MD. I just picked two of them up last week.

I've started seeing them almost everywhere here is Austin. Walmart, Target, Grocery Stores. I think the only place I haven't seen them that I would expect them is Best Buy. But then again, you'd think they would carry the Nexus tablets. I'm still not sure why Google and Best Buy aren't working together to sell a butt load of Nexus tablets over the holidays.

Are you serious? Those things are everywhere... Sams Club, Target, Ralphs Best Buy... I live in southern California and I see them probably every single day.

Ohh yeah game stop too.

Out of curiosity, do you have to type in a long claim code to use them, or is there a QR code or barcode that you can take a picture of with the phone?

I'd like it if Google would sell them in the Netherlands.

There is no way for me to buy anything on the Play Store because you have to have a credit card. Almost nobody in the Netherlands has a credit card.

And yes I've looked at the virtual ones but there's always something that bugs me about those things.

I've switched from a iPhone 4 to a Samsung Galaxy Note 2 (Which I love) so here's hoping there will be a way for me to buy stuff on the Play Store.

Yeah, tons. They're as far from elusive as they could be around here (middle of nowhere, Alabama). Target, Walmart, Best Buy, and Gamestop have racks full of the things.

they're all over the place. i've bought a few myself.

walmart has $15 cards, which supposedly aren't supposed to exist? o_O

I just picked up 4 at my local Target in Northridge, CA. They were very low, under the Android phones display. I missed them my first time around. They should be eye level and not hidden.

I've seen them at every single Target store I have been in. This might be the oddest article I have ever seen. It's like asking have I ever seen a tree before. Worst article of all time.

My wife owns a macbook and an iPhone, and wants an iPad for Christmas.

So, of course I bought her an Asus Transformer tablet with a keyboard dock. She'll soon learn the error of her ways. I know she looks longingly over my shoulder as I use my GS3.

Anyway... While I was updating it to JB, I figured I'd load up her new tab with a Google Play giftcard, so I went to, hoping to buy straight from the webstore and punch in the code while I had the tablet up and running... but you can only "buy online" through and

"OK, whatevs" I thought. Wrong. only had $50 cards for sale electronically (how do you sell out of electronic gift cards???), and I ordered a $25 card 3 times from, and there was an "error in payment processing" each time. Needless to say, it wasn't a problem with my bank or my card.

However... I went to both a Target and a Wal*mart over the last few days (western PA, north and east of pittsburgh), and both brick and mortar stores had hundreds of each denomination of Play giftcards, and they were everywhere (electronics dept, media department, 'impulse buy' pegs at the registers). It was quick and easy to buy one without her even noticing. I'll just put the card in her stocking, rather than add the card to her account before giving her the tablet.

So, it seems like most people can find them in stores... but has anyone successfully ordered one online?