Why Gift Cards Are Bad For You

Last Revised on November 30, 2007

Love Your Health Money Family & Relationship

With the holiday season in full throttle, everybody is into buying shopping. A lot of us would buy a gift card instead of a real gift because we don’t know what our friends like. Well that sucks. Anyways, you got to be real careful when opting to buy a gift card for your friends and family because there are lots of drawbacks of buying and using gift cards:

1. Gifts Cards can easily be lost: Compared to the gift itself, gift cards are very small and are vulnerable to get lost if not handled carefully. If you don’t have receipt, then you are done. If you have receipt, you will have to pay a replacement fee. Some issuers, such as Red Lobster and Southwest irlines, say that if your card is stolen, lost, or destroyed, you’re out of luck.

2. Gifts Cards is not same as cash: People might think gift cards’ value is same as it’s hard cash value. No, it is not. Many store won’t let you exchange for cash, others will charge you a fee. Also, gift cards can’t buy everything, it’s worth is limited.

3. Use it or lose it: If you don’t start to use the gift card right away, it will lose the values as time goes by. Gift cards have like expiration dates, maintenance fees, dormancy fees etc which we don’t pay attention to.

4. The card gets rejected. This can happen at a restaurant,hotel, car-rental company, or gas station. Such retailers place a “hold” on a fixed amount to cover what they think your total bill will be. For example, restaurants might assume you’re going to add a 15 percent gratuity. It can take as long as a week for the hold to be removed. In the meantime, other merchants might reject your card for insufficient funds.

5. Not easy to use last few dollars on the card. Some businesses might try to refuse to let you combine the balance on the card and a second form of payment for the rest of the purchase. Such “split tender” transactions are especially problematic with bank cards and likely will remain so for years.

As always, please feel free to leave suggestions, ask any questions for help or simply discuss the topic. We highly appreciate your involvement and input everyday. If find it helpful, please share it with your friends by using one of the buttons below.

One Response to “Why Gift Cards Are Bad For You”

  1. Alan Reader Says:
    December 2nd, 2007 at 9:47 am

    I’m not sure where you’re getting your information, but your article on gift cards isn’t very accurate. In the United States, a gift card cannot expire. This is the law. For example, if you go to a retailer like Sears or Target (or any other place that sells gift cards, for that matter) and purchase one of their gift cards, it will have the same value in a year, or ten years, as it has on the day you bought it. The buying power of the dollar may have decreased in that time due to inflation, but then again most people don’t wait ten years before using a gift card. I think you should check your facts before publishing this kind of rubbish.

Any Comments, Solutions, Questions, Reviews or Feedbacks You Have

You must be logged in to post a comment.