Monday, June 30, 2008

Gift Card Love And Hate

I love winning, receiving, and earning gift cards. Something about free cash to normally my favorite store, sets my mind reeling with all the possible thoughts on what I want or need to buy. Normally it's a want thang over need, because normally I don't need anything unless it's something for the kids. When it comes to gift cards, I get a little greedy. It's MINE and I DON'T want to share. I'm mature like that.

Normally the instant I get one, I'm online browsing every available category in hopes of finding the one spectacular thing I can't live without. It must be on sale and is just the right price to also cover shipping.
I love the splurge feeling that doesn't cost me anything. I'm sure we all do.

The hate for the gift card is minimal but it's there. It's that minuscule amount that's left from my strategic spending. That less than $5.00 amount that won't buy anything.

I probably have a good 5-7 cards in my purse right now that all have less than $5.00 on each one. I'm to cheap to actually buy something else and then use the card so it's clear. I'm sure the gift card folks love me for that reason. I know that they make a killing on just left over balances. That alone ticks me off. Yet again I'm to cheap to do anything about it.

The problem is 99% of the time I do my purchases online. I'm just not a big going to the actual store kind of shopper. I'd rather just shop in my PJ's and take my sweet time and avoid nagging children who hate to shop. Since my card usually has less than $5.00, I'd have to also use my credit card. A lot of online places don't usually take more than one card during purchase. This hinders my ability to use up the card completely. I hate this.

The cards just remain in my purse waiting for that rare moment in time when I'm actually at that store and need a pack of gum or random really cheap something. Something tells me the'll be there for a long time. Cause I'll be darned if I'm going to throw money away.

3 comments:

Krista said...

Seriously the sites don't let you enter a gift card and then charge the balance to a credit card? What kind of cards do you have? I've never had that problem...

Lawanda said...

That is annoying! You should be careful, though. Some of those gift cards do expire!! I don't think walmart ones do, but some others do!

Austin Chu said...

I work for a company that manages and tracks gift cards, and we follow gift card issues on savvywallet.com. One thing to consider is: last year $100b was spent on gift cards and around $8B was lost/unclaimed. Avoid credit card gift cards, the fees are enormous and they expire--soo many problems. Check the state you live in. Each state has different gift card policies.

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