This article only applies to Minecraft: Java Edition prepaid cards and gift codes, not Minecraft for Windows 10 gift codes. For information about how to redeem a Minecraft for Windows 10 gift code, please visit the frequently asked questions page.
There are many ways of getting Mojang's games and services and if you get them in the form of a prepaid card or a gift code, you will need to redeem them through our account site.
There are two types of prepaid cards: Minecraft prepaid cards and Realms prepaid cards. Minecraft prepaid cards can be used on a new or existing Mojang account and will entitle the cardholder to one Minecraft license (a.k.a. one copy of Minecraft). Realms prepaid cards grant the cardholder a Realms subscription for a set amount of days and require the user to have a Minecraft license on the account that it's redeemed on. The cards can not be used for anything else. If you wish to redeem a Realms prepaid card, please see step 3 of this tutorial.
If you have purchased a Minecraft prepaid card at a retail store, or have received a Minecraft gift code, you can follow these easy steps to redeem it:
1. Create an account at account.mojang.com/register.
2. Check your email for a verification email from Mojang. If you do not receive a verification email, please double check the spelling of your email address and if you have spelled your email address correctly, please contact Mojang Support and describe your issue.
3. After you have registered a Mojang account, you can redeem your prepaid card or gift code at https://minecraft.net/redeem/#redeem. If you have a card, scratch off the silver area and enter the ten digit PIN in the "Code" field. If you run into any problems, please visit our help article on prepaid card errors.
If you have a gift code, enter your 12-character/25-character code in the "Code" field.
5. To download the game, click the Windows, Mac or Linux icon on your account page at account.mojang.com/me. On a Windows PC, download the launcher, place it anywhere you'd like, then run the program. On a Mac, download the file, unpack it, then place Minecraft in your /Applications folder. You can download the game on as many computers as you'd like, as many times as you'd like.
6. Run Minecraft: Java Edition, then log into the game with your registered email address and Mojang account password. If you need technical help (English only), visit https://help.mojang.com/customer/portal/articles/1175661.