Setting Gamertag to a different Country/Region

  • Problem
  • Updated 2 years ago
When creating an Xbox Live Gamertag with the use of a Live Mail account, it seems to take over the contact details from the Live Mail account.
That's fine, because it saves time and all...

But:

When going to "Edit Contact Information" on Xbox.com, the only field that cannot be edited is the Country/Region field.
While you can change the same field in Live Mail, it won't help since the link between the Live Mail contact details and your Gamertag seems to vanish as soon as the Gamertag is created.

I've contacted Xbox support (here in The Netherlands) a while ago to ask for a solution, the answer that the person gave me was to create a new Gamertag, I wouldn't call that a solution if you would ask me.

I guess most people couldn't care less on what region their Gamertag is set, as long as everything works. But here's the catch, some things don't work when it's not set to the region you are in, other things are not what you would expect.

As an example, my account is set to United States, while my Xbox is a PAL machine, and I live in the Netherlands.
The two main problems are:

  • Cannot use Microsoft Points

  • Everything on Xbox Live is for the US, like, I get ads from Netflix etc.



Without a doubt, this restriction is there for a good reason.
But guess what? Some people actually move to different countries, nobody wants to create a new Gamertag and people actually buy Microsoft Points, that don't even work.

It seems that the Internet is plastered with the same question:
Why can't we change the region on our Gamertag?
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LouNGeR

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  • frustrated

Posted 6 years ago

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M3 Sweatt, Official Rep

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To your question about changing the region on your Gamertag, http://support.microsoft.com/kb/961144 notes that you have to contact Xbox Customer Support via telephone (contact info via
http://www.xbox.com/support/contact) to resolve this issue. I suggest contacting the regional support centre again to request assistance, and ask to stay on the line until the issue is resolved.

You may also submit your detailed issue to the support centre via email at https://support.xbox.com (specifically at https://support.xbox.com/support/en/u... Xbox 360 customers with the new, nxe dashboard in English).

I will forward on your comments to the Xbox team re the use of Microsoft Points and Xbox Live configuration WRT regional ads: in your case, I believe you're seeing these items as your account is configured for the States.
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Dexploratio

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@Jose

The problem has been around for over 5 years... so I wouldn't get my hopes up if I were you... *sighs*
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Dexploratio

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@Jose

The problem has been around for over 5 years... so I wouldn't get my hopes up if I were you... *sighs*
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Daniel Tognazzini

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I say, (and mind my usa manner) we should get together demand and place a law suit on Microsoft's international scam
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Mason Ray Adkins

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Man i have the same problem and Xbox support is being gay and not wanting to help and give me the help i need, its not like im gonna blow anything up just change it because they think im gonna kill somebody, is there anyway you could try and forward me help or at least get it changed cause this is really pissing me off man,
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It Is Our Data

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I understand how upset this is for you, but calling the Xbox support 'gay' is an unprovoked insult to the gay community.
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LouNGeR

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Thank you for your reply.

About KB961144:
This problem may occur because the Gamertag change is not applied correctly to your Xbox LIVE Account.

I don't think that's about the same subject, since it's about errors/technical problems while this topic is about an inconvenient setup and/or restriction.

Once at home, I will try calling Xbox support once more.
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totally confused as to why no one at the help center can give a reason as to why location cant be changed.
"The best thing you can do is create a new gamertag(and lose 9 months gold membership and 2150 points) or not play any new maps for the games you have" was the lovely comment i had from help desk.
I say its NOT good enough, and ask WHY cant the location from our gamertags be changed?
Thinking now i wish i had stuck with PC gameing, at least there are no restrictions to where you live for any updates, you dont have to pay to play most games.
Ah well will probably get yet another RROD now just to rub salt in the wound.
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Rick Archer

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This is exactly the problem I have mate and I encountered the same bs response.

However, there is a partial fix:

Buy US gamerpoints sold on Ebay in the states. They email you the codes for the points.

The trouble then is the points/downloads (for maps etc) don't work on all games :( Because your xbox is located in another country and not where the hosting servers with the maps are).

Fallout 3 downloads are no problem using this method. :)

Unfortunately COD WOW and Gears 2 are :(

I'm still fustrated. Why design a world-class gaming system with no capability to change locations!!! :(
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LouNGeR

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Hey Rick, yes I have already bought US points from eBay twice, but I rather just buy them at the local store.
What still sucks is that all news items/downloads etc are all from US.
Like, I get ads for Netflix while we can't even have Netflix here.
Another annoyance is that people see a US flag near my name on some games.
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hansungyu

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I am having this problem right now, and have been back and forth with Microsoft online support for XBOX using emails for several days now. Is there any solution to this obvious problem from Microsoft Xbox live at all?
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iAmmar

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I just purchased 2 x4000 cards and when trying to redeem code the message is Please enter a valid code.

What should I do? I tried calling the xbox center but it is closed I will try again tomorrow.

Aaaah and I was looking forward to the CoC WaW maps.

Come ON.

Am in Saudi Arabia by the way and Xbox still did not include us as a country so I had to place my local in UK. That's why I love Sony. God bliss you Sony. you were always good to us.
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paradix86

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Unfortunately I too have the same problem because I changed the nation, and for that check the IP address of your nationality in addition to the Xbox Live ID account, you block some content in the marketplace (and tell you: not available from your location .... Why not???? LHO buy here!)
I now live in Switzerland (10km from the Italian border), and all products XBOX (games, microsoft points, etc. ... etc. ..) sold here are from Italy, but since Microsoft could not know that in Switzerland the 3 national languages (actually 4 !!!):
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Switzerland
(German and French Italian, not African or Hindu !!!), to have the dashboard in Italian, even those who have always lived in Switzerland and speaks Italian for not having the dashboards in French or German has to put Italy in her live id , then after having problems ....

7 times I called customer support ....
want to know the different entertaining answers?
1. Italy leads the Xbox ....
2. created a new account (losing 2500 Microsoft Points, and 11mesi to live?? as hi asked to transfer the points and live on another account, but a "supervisor" told me that you can not ....)

I do not know, it would seem that if those of Microsoft have not provided the problem before, there is no way to reason with customer support, or to find appropriate solutions, and it would seem that the problem will be resolved only if another 200,000 thousand users have the same problem ....

I was very disappointed ... not just for this incident but for many other oversights, which made it almost impossible for us players .... making life really difficult to use Microsoft products for people like me who loves them ....
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diogo

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thanks to this problem i dont play xbox360 no more( 1.5 years now:D) since i only used it for arcade and now i cant buy the MS points...and also i am not going to buy them at the retail store where the price higher
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Retodon8

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When I phoned Xbox support in the Netherlands, the representative mentioned they get calls about this issue 2 times a day, and looking online I see a lot of people have the same issue as well. Despite that, there is no solution. :(

I understand you could associate your Gamertag with a different Live ID, but once your Gamertag reads the region from the first Live ID, it's set in stone no matter what you do with it, so that's useless.

There are two workarounds, but since the first is moving (back) to the country your Gamertag is set to, there is really only one. That is creating a new Gamertag and corresponding Live ID with your (currently) correct region. Forget about your old name/identity, save games, leftover MS Points, and any content (DLC, Arcade games, etc.) you already bought.

Alternatively you can keep using the old account to play the stuff you bought already, but for online games that means you'd need to buy Gold for both accounts, and there is no guarantee everything will work since your Xbox isn't in the right (actually: wrong) region like the Gamertag wants.

They won't (claim it's technically impossible) change the region associated with your Gamertag because of potential abuse. For example you could set your account to USA, buy MS Points for relatively cheap dollars, then switch back to Dutch. The Xbox Live EULA mentions the region for Gamertags can't be changed, and you are supposed to check your Live ID beforehand.

I think you can re-use your old Gamertag name if you're willing to pay. For 800 MS Points rename your old Gamertag to something else, and immediately register a new Gamertag using your old name. Be really quick just in case somebody else wants to snatch up your old name in the meantime. I haven't tried this yet, but I think it should work.

800 Points will cost you $12,50, since you'll actually need to buy 1000 Points and waste 200. You'll either need to get your hands on a USA MS Points card (or at least code) somehow, or use your credit card.
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LouNGeR

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I don't think a Gamertag/Nickname is available immediately when you rename it to something else.
A proper registering system ought to set this Nick as unavailable for at least a couple of months.

Of course, getting another Gamertag is not a solution.

My solution, for a couple of months now, is buying USA MS points from eBay.
Find someone that sells MS points and looks like someone you can thrust. Do check the feedback on someone and see if there's any feedback from people who previously bought MS points from that seller.

I think I've done this 3 times now, they'll usually send you the (working) code through Email within an hour or so.
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Retodon8

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Like I said, I haven't actually tried it, won't vouch for it, but the article I linked before suggests the name is freed up immediately. Specifically it mentions you can't change capitalization in your Gamertag, since GAMERtag and gamerTAG are considered to be identical. As a workaround it mentions you could first change it to something completely different, and then change it back, but with the capitalization you want (for 1600 MS Points total). It warns you to be quick about it, leading me to my earlier conclusion.

I agree, this isn't a solution by a long shot, but I thought the idea was worth mentioning anyway, in case someone wants to be able to at least use their old name. I just hope it actually works.

Your suggestion I thought of myself, and it's definitely worth mentioning, but it isn't really a solution either. For instance Gears of Wars 2 includes a code that lets you download some extra maps for free, and that code only works in the region you bought the game in. The same thing goes for codes included with some special edition games. You'd have to buy USA versions of those special editions to be able to use those features. Of course if you already spent money on that account this may still be preferable to starting anew.
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Retodon8

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Well, I since tried it, and the old name is freed up in a matter of seconds, so I would advice to be quick if anyone wants to follow the same route. :)

My advice: On a PC log in your new Windows Live ID (the one with the proper region) using account.live.com. Once logged in, visit Xbox.com and you should get a page allowing you to register your new Gamertag for this Live ID, Fill in the details, but don't try to submit the form yet. On your Xbox 360 rename your old Gamertag. Back on your PC, check if the Gamertag is available yet using the button, and once it is, register.

One additional problem I ran into was buying the USA MS Points for the renaming. I couldn't add a credit card as a payment method since even on that page MS insists on using the incorrect region. :( I had to get my hands on a USA Points card instead. (Twice as money Points as needed on the smallest card, but oh well.)
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Zekk Distor

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Same problem here, only now I finally know why MS automatically fills in "United States" when I try to pay with my credit card. I was actually close to buying 8400 EU points, but thankfully I found this article first, since my account is registered as being a US account (despite me living in NL). How silly that something I filled in 10 years ago to get access to premium hotmail would backlash like this -_-
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Andy_331

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Hey everyone,

Same problem here, moved from UK to Canada well over a year ago now. I tried to change gamertag region as soon as I moved, but MS wouldn't let me. I was hoping that there would have been enough complaints by now for MS to respond. I appreciate the security/abuse concerns, but surely they have to realise that it is common for people to legitimately move countries. Also, surely you could send them proof of your current address i.e. a utility bill or something?

I never know whether I am having problems on XBL because of normal reasons- server over capacity etc, or if it is because I am in the 'wrong' region.

It is a ridiculous limitation- especially for a multinational organization...

Hope that this is resolved in the near future!
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Zekk Distor

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Yup, I thought about DLing the Call of Duty 360 demo, but well, I'm not in the right region. Even worse, there's an unlockable theme in Assassin's Creed 2, and I can't get it because of the wrong region settings >.>
I have a feeling it's going to get worse in the near future...
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Toby Stevens

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someone needs to do something and quickly
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Scott Bingley

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Same problem here I just got off the phone with the as$%@'s and they say there is nothing they can do. I was like I guess they really don't want my money. And here is the real kicker apparently if you've been playing online and recreate a new gamertag it is possible you will lose you games. Your gamecode is linked to xbox live and once you link it your stuck. All i want is to buy some points but I can't even do that. I can't describe the anger I feel right now. It's not like i'm asking them to commit suicide all i want is my country seitched to canada Damn it!
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Scott Bingley

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Mind you i did send a very strongly worded letter by email to microsoft complaints I think you should all do the same. Squeeky wheel and all right?
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Cross Court

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Well, I just got the same problem. I even created my xbox live membership in my current country, but linked to an old hotmail.

Time to sell my xbox ...
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Clement Amphyon

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Same problem. I moved from France to Canada. I'd have never expected the region you first chose while making your profil on Xbox Live would have any repercution on your ability to buy some add-on packs.
I wrote my parents' address in France, cuz I meant to send the bills and the mails to this address in case of... I did't know it would condemn me to be neither able to download things on the Canadian Market not on the French one.
I called the service like 3 times. always the same bulls**t : " we can't change that...create a new gamer tag....We aren't in charge of that, nobody can change that, we don't have access to your profil, nobody does !...etc"

I try to scared them telling them I would strike back along with the customers office..... but I can't, They're right, everything is written in those tiny lines in the Xbox contract.

Only thing to do is to sign a petition or something and let Microsoft know about our revendication.

I can't beleive I just lost about 75 dollars of gold card and Xbox points because of some poorly done contracts !
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Evin DeVore

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Try going on hotmail.com and create a new email account with your current country and phone number as well as your city and once created.. On The Xbox 360 change and link your account to your new hotmail email under:
Account Management -> Windows Live ID -> Change Windows Live ID
-------------------------
That may work because I tried it with a Japanese hotmail and the dashboard displayed Japanese only dashboard panels and marketplace content.
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Retodon8

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That won't work. Once you assign a Windows Live ID to a Gamertag, the tag is associated with that ID's country, no matter what you do afterwards. There wouldn't be all these complaints if that would work.
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r.j.norman00

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I have this exact same problem! I made my offline account with all my achievements etc. into an x-box live one so that I could try out xbox gold & playing online. I got quite into playing a few games online, so when my free trial expired, I figured I'd renew it (for a month at least) so I could keep playing. Unfortunately, xbox live is convinced I am in the US, apparently because of the e-mail address I used, when I am actually in the UK. I can't pay to further my account, because it asks for a US stater & zipcode when I try to put payment details in, which I obviously do not have. I have e-mailed microsoft UK about it, and it's the same deal, they say the only way to get round it is to make a new gamertag, henceforth losing all my gaming achievements, plus any online progress I have been making in the games i have been playing. I think it's ridiculous, but then the whole microsoft online experience seems a bit poory realised to me, for such a large company anyhow. I mean, PS3 users don't even pay! I have pretty much stopped playing my xbox online now, as I don't fancy having none of my achievements showing, or having to level up again on all the games I have been playing. Is there anyway to transfer all my offline achievements to another gamerag at least? Or am I screwed because I turned my original offline profile into my xbox live one? Thanks a lot Microsoft!!
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droobey

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Have you tried logging in to your Windows Live ID thats linked to your gamertag here:
http://account.live.com

And clicking change next the Country/Region?
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LouNGeR

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Hello droobey,
That's the first thing I tried before I started this topic.
Mine already says The Netherlands, but doesn't help at all.