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Since a few months ago, I started getting my card declined on the NYC Supreme online store, something that never used to happen. Just recently during The North Face drop, I got my card rejected a few times on the TYO online store as well. With so many people taking the L and speculating the reasons, I decided to put together reasons this might be happening based on the information I've gathered online as well as my personal failed attempts.

How Supreme Check Out Works

To understand what could possibly contribute to this problem, we have to understand how the check out process works. From my understanding, this is the flow from the point you hit the checkout button.

  1. Click Checkout
  2. Server-side verification on stock status
  3. Verify credit card info
  4. Verify stock status again
  5. Result (Order Confirmation or Error)

Let's break this down from step 2.

2. Server-side verification on stock status

Obviously, all of us have been cart-jacked before, since adding an item to your cart doesn't mean it's reserved for you. In this step, the stock status is confirmed again, and if they are already gone, you will be getting an error that says it is out of stock (not card declined). Some times it appears as a message on your check out page, other times it sends you to the cart with the item struck out.

3. Verify credit card info

After the stock is confirmed to be available at the moment you click the check out button, the credit card information is sent to the respective issuer to be verified, similar to any other site.

4. Verify stock status again

This is the step where I will be basing some of the reasons for the card decline error. After the credit card information has been successfully verified, there is a final confirmation on stock status as it might be sold out the time it takes for the card information to be verified.

So, with the above process in mind, here are the possible reasons why you are getting the error. I will also describe some speculative reasons that I believe to be false. Unfortunately, no one can confirm it unless it is a developer working on the Supreme online store.

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Your credit card information is actually wrong.

I hate to sound like the IT guy telling you to turn off and on your faulty machine, but I have missed out on Box Logos because I chose the wrong credit card type on the check out form. So, before we deep-dive into the more in-depth reasons, do yourself a favor and just make sure that the credit card information you entered is correct. For those who are new, Supreme requires the delivery address to be the address registered to your credit card. You want to make sure that the format and order is exactly the same to prevent any chance of failure due to this.

But like me, if you have purchased successfully on multiple occasions, then you're probably fine on this end.

The server can't handle the amount of requests.

On certain occasions like box logos and The North Face collaborations drop, the access to the site during the drop time is simply too great for the server to handle each request adequately.

So, the “card declined” error is simply the default error for anything related to step 3 of the above process, which basically means that the verification failed because the request was not able to finish the verification of either the credit card info or stock status.

Just recently on a The North Face drop, I used two different credit cards with different addresses, both of which have successfully purchased before, and couldn't go through despite multiple tries.

Unfortunately, there is not much you can do to solve this besides having a lot of luck. But what you should do is repeatedly try to check out to increase your chances of copping.

Autofill (Probably not true)

Some theories say that the reason is because you auto-filled the check out form and suggests that you copy and paste or type in the credit card info manually to circumvent this. I personally believe that the possibility of this being the reason is close to none. I've used autofill for all my purchases, many of which were successful.

As someone with some technical background, I could make a few assumptions.

  • Detecting autofill for only the credit card info and not for other fields makes little sense.
  • It is hard to detect autofill in the first place. A way that it could be implemented is to detect the time in which an item is checked out. Items that check out too quickly (ie. within the first 5 seconds) could possibly be given a temporary ban. But in this case, it would be a disadvantage to people who are actually fast and it would be hard to find the sweet spot where one can be determined to not use autofill.
  • Another possible way to detect autofill is to have a script to listen for javascript insertions.
  • It takes a fair bit of time to fill in all the fields manually and items are sold out before that time, so it is hard to believe that everyone else is doing it manually.

So to repeat, this is probably not the reason. However, if you wish to believe this to be the reason, then you can probably solve it by using a macro program like Keyboard Maestro which emulates your actions as if you typed it in, instead of a script or bot that can be detected.

The item is sold out after credit card verification.

As I described in step 4 in the check out process, there is a good chance that after the credit card info has been successfully verified, but the items are already sold out at that point.

Unlike the pre-checkout error, it is probably easier to lump all post-checkout errors into one and thus, the error will show as a card declined (EDIT: Sometimes this is shown as a card info is wrong error as Stefan has pointed out in the comments). I believe this since you never see any other kind of error after submitting the check out form.

In this instance, you may sometimes find that the site will still show the item as available, but since the site connecting to the stock database and the order process connecting to the stock database are two separate connections, there is a good possibility that they do not reflect the same status.

You are being blacklisted.

This is one of the theories floating out there I find only to have low possibility, but only for those trying to buy from an overseas Supreme store.

  • I use a Comgateway (a US proxy) for buying on the US store, and it could be that the address, which is a shared one, is banned on the whole.
  • It is also necessary to use a VPN to access the overseas store. In such instances, the IP itself may cause the rejection.

However, I do think this is one of the less likely theories as I have succeeded several times purchasing in this manner.

You are delivering to a (known) proxy.

In the crazy clampdown on reselling, Supreme does not want you to buy their stuff from another country. I've been using a now-defunct Citibank Virtual Pay card (from Singapore) which lets me set a ComGateway address as the billing and delivery address.

I was getting a credit card decline for a while not and could confirm that Supreme is blocking off well-known proxies when I tried to use the ComGateway BuyForMe service and get the following error.

This makes it pretty clear cut that ComGateway addresses are a big no-no. Do you know any proxies that still work? Let me know in the comments below.

Bonus: How about order cancellations?

Ever got your box logo flexing dreams and hopes dashed by the dreaded order cancellation email? This sometimes happens to customers even if they didn't cancel the order themselves. There are a few reasons

  • The system over-accepted orders
    Basically, they sold more than they have and they realized it at the warehouse.
  • They suspect you are botting
    If you use a similar name, email, and addresses to purchase multiple of the same product, someone at Supreme could have spotted it and cancel accordingly. Given the number of orders that Supreme receives, I think this theory seems unlikely.
  • Someone canceled your order
    Did you show your order number on the internet? Someone used to be able to use just the number to cancel your order. However, recently Supreme changed their terms to no longer accept cancellations, so this is unlikely as of now.

Conclusion

I know this is supposed to have some kind of conclusion, but I can't give you a definite answer to the problem and will keep looking. But my guess is that it is a combination of a few of the above.

Got some experiences of your own? Be sure to share in the comments and I'll add it to this article.

Looking for the best VPN to view and buy from other Supreme online stores? Check out my article on the best VPNs to buy Supreme with.

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