How to request a refund for an iTunes or App Store purchase

How to request a refund for an iTunes or App Store purchase

Ever had a time where you needed a refund for either an iTunes or App Store purchase? Whether you accidentally purchased something, got double billed, or have clever children that have figured out the art of in-app purchases, Apple does give you the ability to request refunds for any kind of media as well as App Store purchases all in one place.

Follow along and we'll show you how to report a problem with a recent purchase.

Before we begin, it's worth noting that most of the time, iTunes will not refund anything that is older than 90 days. So keep that in mind when trying to report an issue with a purchase. As long as the purchase was within the past 90 days, continue along and we'll show you have to file a request for a refund.

  1. Launch iTunes on either your Mac or PC.
  2. Click on the iTunes Store button if you aren't already in it.
  3. Now click on your email address and enter your password. If you aren't signed in at all, you'll see a general sign in option.
  4. Once you've signed into your account, click on See All under the Purchase History section.
  5. Here you'll see lists of different iTunes invoices. Find the invoice that contains the item in question and click on it.
  6. Click on the button labeled Report a Problem.
  7. Next you'll be taken to another screen that shows the same batch of apps in that invoice. Click on the Report a Problem option next to the specific app purchase in question.
  8. You'll now be routed out of iTunes and to iTunes Support on the web. Simply sign in to your Apple ID that you use for iTunes purchases one more time.
  9. Here you'll see another detailed list of apps that you've recently purchased within the past 90 days. Click on Report a Problem one more time next to the app you're trying to get a refund for.
  10. From the dropdown, select the reason you'd like a refund. There are several options from you not authorizing the purchase to accident purchases. Put any other pertinent information into the text box and hit Submit.

That's all there is to it. You should receive a confirmation email from iTunes Support that they have received your request. You'll receive a follow up response with Apple's decision on a refund within a short period of time.

Allyson Kazmucha

Editor for iMore, Potter pundit, and the ninja in your iOS

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There are 35 comments. Add yours.

teepeeayy says:

Thanks, Aly. Does the same procedure apply for music? I'd love to see a "try and buy" policy put in place. $.99 for an app is one thing, but $12 for an album you end up hating because you were given bad advice via Facebook is a different story.

stephen007 says:

Apple implemented 90 second song previews about a year ago. I think that pretty much IS the "try and [then] buy" policy that you're looking for.

Allyson Kazmucha says:

That's asking a little too much. You already CAN try before you buy and have been able to for a long time. iTunes gives insanely long song snippets for virtually every song they sell. That's your try before you buy if you ask me.

bgl321 says:

That's what you get for taking advice from facebook... really?

CORYK333 says:

LMAO, stop, just please stop! I just cant even.............
You have just won the award for most ridiculous comment I have ever read on iMore (& probably "TIPB"days too). I can't even begin to type an actual response to this, sorry.

DataCentre says:

I accidentally bought Keynote and Numbers for $9.99 each after a fresh install of iOS 7 Beta 3 when a page popped up asking me to download these Apple Apps, ie: iBooks, iTunesU, Podcast etc. I tapped ok, put in my password and everything started downloading. Was never asked to confirm the two $9.99 purchases tho. Well I contacted Apple and they were very helpful and refunded my accidental purchases.

Sent from the iMore App

Razor Wolf says:

How long did it take to get your refund? And how do you tell it is refunded? On mac ?

rathijit says:

Apple will only allow up to 3 refunds in your lifetime (I think). I received this email from them when I tried requesting for a refund in 2011 (21 months after my prior request):

> Dear Rathijit,
>
> I've carefully considered your request for a refund. While I understand
> this purchase was unintentional, your account history shows a previous
> refund for an accidental purchase on March 26, 2009. Because the iTunes
> Store has already made an exception to the Terms of Sale for you, I cannot
> grant you a refund for this purchase.
>
> Sincerely,
>
> Kate

rathijit says:

However, I tried requesting for another refund a moment ago for an app that I did not mean to buy, and it worked. I guess they only disallow more than 3 refunds in a span of 3 or 4 years.

CORYK333 says:

Seems like a decent policy to me. It's the same thing that a lot of the bigger stores do when you return items, they ask for your ID or info/name & it goes into the system which I assume throws some sort of red flag up if you abuse the return policy.

-how people buy apps "by mistake" so many times is always something that baffled me. I understand 1 time or OCCASIONALLY the "kids excuse" (which is a whole 'nother discussion we had on here a few months ago). But a grown person making so many purchase errors??? Seems to be either a bit "fishy" or the person in question (even tho they might be grown/mature) probably shouldn't have the power to purchase if they are confused so easily.

rathijit says:

Yeah, I agree with and accept Apple's policy. My excuse for 3 requests was that I purchased the apps and then found out they did not have the features I expected them to have in a span of <3 years (I spend a lot on apps, so it's easy to hit that limit in that period). I'd say that's because of insufficient documentation, which is not Apple's fault. That being said, I'd really like it if Apple introduces a 'try before you buy' feature for apps.

kravex says:

I remember reading this a few years ago:

Apple charges a 30% commission on all paid apps sold through the App Store. So basically, developers get 70% of a given sale but if the end-user wants a refund, the developer has to pay Apple 100% of the sale.

Is that still true?

http://techcrunch.com/2009/03/25/apples-iphone-app-refund-policies-could...

LozBlanko says:

I just bought a music track with a fault on it today. It appears that you can't report a problem until Apple have actually invoiced you for the items (i.e. not immediately after purchase). You have to go back later and try again.

heading4tomorrow says:

I got an answer immediately "Please contact developer" after I chose "it does not function as expected".

http://gyazo.com/fa992f96a941669fc7b6b7fc65c6cee9.png

What does this mean? Does it mean Apple won't even consider refunding it?
The developer admitted Apple locks down the environment and the function cannot be added.. so what now!?

Cartoonipad says:

Problem here too - though can't even "report a problem" with this version of iTunes on my PC (11.0.4.4). The most recent purchase (I want to get refunded) shows up, above the list - but selecting it, or 'report a problem' button has no effect. Any ideas?

Dan Schratz says:

I think Apple should do something with the app store like google does with the play store. You have fifteen minutes from the time an app finishes downloading to get a refund, and a lot of times the developers will extend that time slot if you email them

PortalsMeow says:

I bought Minecraft, thinking that it was going to be cool but instead it was really hard to control and not fun at all compared to the PC version, it spent all my iTunes money and i don't even want it, it won't let me get my money back though... i tried this but it wouldn't let me

Sh1pp0K1tsune says:

i really understand you.. the devs really choose the best looking pictures and make an adorable description, but in the and the app sucks. or games do net even tell you what kind of game it is, only the story and the superb graphics.. i know, i know, i could google it, but come on, it sucks to google everything i do. why the hell not let users try the app for free and the you can make your decision. yeah, like the Play Store does.. sorry Apple, but Google rules on this! but i know why Apple does it this way. simply MORE CA$H! because people want never stop buying apps they never really going to use. they will also not google it every time. and so they spend some $ every year they would not spend if they could get a refund. this turns out to be a lot $$$ if every guy do so.

btw: 2do-apps are a good example. they promise heaven, but in the end they suck all in a way, even the very expensive ones :P

Ginny Hx says:

Isn't it just simpler to visit https://reportaproblem.apple.com/ and skip the previous steps!?

robby2 says:

Is that a legitimate Apple site?!

tomi150 says:

No, it's not a legitimate site. Almost definitely a phishing scam.

MarkusMasters says:

It is a legitimate site, unless apple gives strangers access hostnames/zones under its delegated zone apple.com.

Stop spreading FUD.

Rushil Khokhar says:

My purchased history does not show my latest buys. In fact, none of the apps I bought are visible. Please help.

ThatsAwesome says:

If you have purchased from itunes on desktop, then you must sign out yourself out of App store on iPhone and sign in. The purchases would be visible then on iPhone.

kevin13769 says:

The simple fact with Apple, is that you should use a CREDIT card, backed by VISA or MASTERCARD for protection, that way, if an app does not work in the way described, or features are removed etc after you purchase it, you can simply ask them to implement a refund on your behalf...!!! This certainly works in the UK with card protection, i would of thought the protection would be the same everywhere....

theegooch says:

I'm pretty sure the I'm going to have to bite the bullet on this one. I purchased Omnifocus Mac app and iPhone app, based on recommendations from at least a dozen different blogs Apple forums posts saying how great it was. Since Omnifocus so complicated, to say the least, I didn't have time to try it out for several weeks.

When I finally got to go through the tutorial videos, documentation, and blogs that explained how to set it up and use it, I realized that there was no way that I'd ever be able to dedicate enough time to the app for it to be useful. It's been sitting on my Macbook and iPhone for months reminding me of how much money I wasted.

I switched back to the Reminder app, lesson learned on that part. But I would like to get some/all of my money back for an app that I ended up not using. It's been months though. My life is one of those that it's busy enough to take weeks or even a month to sit down and write a blog post. Anyways, thanks for reading, and buyer beware!

Patrick Setiadi says:

What do I do when it says "This purchase isn't eligible for refund"???

Patrick Setiadi says:

What do I do when it says "This purchase is not eligible for refund"

Josh1227 says:

Thank you very much. Your article saved me a lot of time fishing around the iTunes UI.

Braincasualties says:

Thanks for your post! I'd have never came to think it was iTunes app the way to ask for a Mac App Store refund... bad for Apple (shouldn't they give access to such options in the Mac App Store as well as through iTunes App?!?) but great to see I could ask for a refund on a crappy app I had just bought (it was sold as a Google Keep "app" but was nothing but a window opening a web session on your behalf... so no local notes nor configurations... crap!)

Once again, thanks for your post!

Star Annalise Hodkin says:

What if your boyfriend is a complete and utter f****** idiot who thinks it'd be a great idea to spend £70(!!) in 2 WEEKS(!!) on albums when we're already £200 down on bills that are due out tomorrow!?!?!? I realise Apple probably don't see this as an acceptable reason for a refund but you never know! Failing that I could always kill him and claim on the life insurance!!