It has happened to all of us: you purchase that new app from the Google Play Store, confident that you are going to love it. But then you don’t. Whether it’s an incompatibility issue with your particular phone, or the app just turns out to not be what you were promised, it sucks to feel like you’ve wasted your money on something you’ll never use. Time to get a Google Play refund.
The good news is that Google has a refund process built right into the Play Store. The downside is that if you want a hassle-free refund process, you will have to act rather quickly. Here’s how to get a refund on apps you bought from the Play Store.
How to get a Google Play refund
The easiest way to get a Google Play refund on a recently purchased app or game is to request a refund directly on the Play Store. The process is extremely simple, with no questions asked, but there’s a catch. You have to act quickly. In fact, you’ll have to submit a refund request within two hours of purchasing the app or game. That may sound fast, but two hours is plenty of time to determine whether you’ll continue using an app or game.
To get an easy Google Play refund, you have to first open the Google Play Store app, navigate to the app or game page in question, and then tap on the “REFUND” button. If that button is missing, it means that you’ve already missed the two hour window.
Do keep in mind that you cannot use the refund option if you purchase an app for the second time. The second-time purchase is permanent, which is a measure taken by Google to prevent abuse of its refund system.
But what if you missed the two-hour Play Store refund window? You still have 48 hours to hopefully get a quick refund. But you’ll have to submit a refund request by filling out a form online which can be found here. A decision is usually made within 15 minutes, but it can take up to two business days before you hear back from Google.
How to get a Google Play refund if you missed the 48-hour refund window
In case you’ve missed the 48-hour window, don’t begin to pull out your hair just yet. There might still be hope.
Contacting the app or game developers and requesting a refund doesn’t come with a a 100 percent guarantee of success. You could write to the developers expressing your discontent with the app or game and request that they refund your purchase. It is then entirely up to them whether they give you your money back.
Either way, to get the developer’s contact details, head over to the app or game’s landing page on the Google Play Store, expand the description by tapping on “Read More,” and pray for the legitimacy of the contact details. Provided anyone checks the contact email, the second half of your struggle would be to convince the developers to return your money.
How to get a refund for in-app purchases in apps and games
For apps and games that are free to download and play, developers have to look for other avenues to monetize their products. In-app purchases are one such avenue for them, and when used well can help developers earn a lot of money.
Getting a refund for an in-app purchase may be difficult, but it’s not impossible. There’s no two-hour magic refund button to sweep away your problems. Instead, you will have to once again submit a refund request by filling a form online which can be found here. A decision is usually made within 15 minutes, but it can take up to two business days before you hear back from Google.
How to get a refund for Google Play movies, TV shows, and books
For purchases made on Google Play Movies and TV, and Google Play Books, you can also get a refund as long as you haven’t started watching the video or reading the book.
- The refund period is seven days in most countries.
- For movies and TV shows, if the purchase is made in Italy, you get up to 10 business days to request a refund, and 14 days if in Denmark, Finland, Germany, Norway, Portugal, and Sweden.
- If the video playback is defective, not working, or unavailable, and if a book doesn’t work, you can request a refund at any time.
- From your browser, go to https://play.google.com/store/account, go to “Order History” and to the right of the order, click on the three vertical dots. Select “report a problem” and fill out the form.
How to contact Google’s support team for help with refund
In case the developers don’t reply to your emails or disagree with your request, there is one last option for you to try. Google’s support page says that you can contact their support team asking for help solving your problem.
Before you go ahead with this route, read the conditions under which Google says you should contact their support team: “If the developer doesn’t have contact information listed, hasn’t responded to your request, or their response was unsatisfactory, contact our support team to see if we can help.”
You can contact Google’s support team for refunds related to both app purchases as well as for in-app purchases. Good luck!
How long does it take to get a Google Play refund?
Any Google Play refunds from the Play Store are processed back to your original method of payment. Hence, it might take different amounts of time to receive refunds depending on the payment method used at the time of purchasing the app or game.
For credit cards or PayPal, Google says it takes between three and five business days. For Google Play balance (in case you made the purchase using a Gift Card or credit) or Google Wallet balance, refunds usually take just one day to appear in your account.
The bottom line is, if you’ve just purchased a new app or game that doesn’t turn out the way the developers promised, or if the app or game doesn’t suit you, you will have to act fast (within two hours) for a hassle-free refund process.