Make the most of your gift cards by following these tips
Gift cards – what would we do without them? You can’t get more convenient when it comes to gift giving and it’s a sure-fire way of getting a gift you’ll actually use if you receive one. Most people that receive gift cards say they like getting them. Whether you’re on the receiving end or the giving end, here are some helpful tips to get as much as possible from gift cards.
Tips for Gift Cards
Stick with Store-Issued Gift Cards – Bank-issued gift cards often have expiration dates and fees. Gift cards you buy at retail stores are best. Only a few states restrict fees on bank-issued cards.
Buy Direct – Be aware that there are fraudulent sellers that lurk online – especially on auction sites. It’s always best to buy directly from the store.
Check for Tampering – Before buying the card, check the PIN number of the card to make sure it’s intact.
Hang on to Your Receipt – Sometimes gift cards just don’t work correctly. Include the receipt with your gift so your recipient can prove the correct amount on the card.
Register Gift Cards – The only way to replace a stolen or lost card is by registering it. Go to the issuer’s website, enter the PIN number and you’re all set.
Use the Gift Card – Approximately 6.8 billion gift cards aren’t ever used. Use yours and use it quickly. While issuers can’t charge interest rates or dormancy fees any longer, thanks to the CARD Act of 2009, if a store goes out of business, you won’t get your money back.
Shop Online – If you see anything you want in the store, use your gift cards online. You can use some gift cards at several stores. For example, you can use Gap cards at their sister stores that include Old Navy, Banana Republic, Athleta, and Piperlime. You can also use your gift cards and shop online at Cabela’s, Bass Pro Shop, Bed, Bath & Beyond, Walmart and many more.
Gift cards are a great convenience and time-saver. By choosing retailer gift cards, buying in the stores, keeping your receipts, registering the card, and using it quickly, you can make the most of your card. Don’t be afraid of rumors surrounding cards and don’t be afraid to give or ask for one. After all, gift cards are the #1 gift to give or receive.