An eCode is an electronic code with a preset dollar value that can be claimed and spent on All eCodes issued are subject to the Gift Card Terms and Conditions. To begin issuing eCodes as a method of payment, you must first set up an account with Merchant Card Services using the Amazon eCode Setup Form linked at the bottom of this page.

Who Can Issue eCodes

University of Illinois employees who have a NetID and University Identification Number (UIN) may set up an eCode account and issue eCodes.

Researchers who want to use eCodes as human subject payments should refer to Business and Finance Policies and Procedures 8.4 Payments to Human Subjects and 8.4.7 Electronic Codes for Human Subject Payments.

University of Illinois employees may opt to use emailed eCodes as an alternative payment method as detailed in 8.6.14 Electronic Codes as an Alternative Payment Method. See also 8.6.4 Request Payment for Cash Gifts, Prizes, and Awards and 8.6.10 Request Incentive Payment for Activity Participation.

How to Set Up an eCodes Account

To submit the setup form, you must be either the Principal Investigator or business manager for a research project, or the university employee who will be responsible for the account. eCode accounts are linked to your UIN. If you leave the project or university, contact to transfer the account to another representative’s UIN.

You have the option of saving your form to complete at a later time, or share the saved form link for another (such as your business manager) to complete. Any saved forms older than six months may be deleted without notice.

Study, project, or payment information

All accounts must have:

  • A unique account name. This will be your study or project title, or the event or reason for issuing eCodes.
  • Issuing start date and end date. Note: The end date should be the last day eCodes may be issued, which might be later than the end date of your study or event.

Funding information

The CFOAP you provide will be billed at the time an eCode is issued. You are responsible for verifying that funds are available for eCodes.

Required are:

  • The total available funding amount for eCodes. This amount can be increased at a later time.
  • Whether you will be using state funds as the eCode funding source.
  • eCode amount(s): minimum and maximum dollar values of eCodes that will be issued.
    • Note: A recipient may not receive a single eCode or cumulative eCodes that equal or exceed $200 in a calendar year. For more information, refer to the policy on human subject payments and alternative payments.
  • Banner CFOAP. You may provide an optional Activity number.
    • Human subject payments will all use Account 141200.
    • For all other payments, provide a brief description of your payment reason and Merchant Card Services will assign the appropriate Account number.

Email to recipients

Recipients receive their eCode in an email that issuers generate in Merchant Card Services’ eCodes application. You may customize some content of the eCode email that is sent to recipients.

  • “From” email address. The “From” email address can be a departmental email, a study email, or an individual email. This will be visible to the recipient.
  • Subject line. You may enter your own or choose to keep the provided default text:
    • Claim Code from the University of Illinois
  • Pre-text. This is the greeting and text that displays before the eCode and required content supplied by Amazon. You may enter your own or choose to keep the provided default text:
    • Hello,
      Below is the information about your* claim code.
  • Post-text. This text displays after the eCode and required content supplied by Amazon. It typically contains the department organizer’s or Principal Investigator’s signature and contact information.

Submitting the Setup Form

Allow up to two business days for the processing of your eCodes setup request. After your form has been received and processed, Merchant Card Services will be in touch with next steps.

Click the button below to access the Amazon eCode Setup Form.

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