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7 ways to make the most of gift cards (poll)

submitted on December 17, 2011 by DebsFreebies in "Member's Lounge"
They make for popular holiday presents, but you want to ensure that you take full advantage of them. For both givers and recipients, these guidelines can help.

1. Mark your calendar
2. Know the different types of gift cards
3. Pair your gift card with a coupon
4. Don't buy just because you have a gift card
5. Share a 'heads-up' with e-gift cards
6. Gift card thieves
7. Keep it fun

Read more here:
1. Will you be giving a card to someone for the holidays?
2. Would you rather have a gift card as opposed to a present?
3. Do you currently have gift cards sitting around you haven't used?
 or See Results 


  • 136039
    23 14 8
    12 10 2
    Posted by CouponNut on December 17, 2011
    [reply] 1 0
    I personally don't like gift cards because they make you spend more money than the card is worth.
  • 136057
    1 6 2
    11 4 1
    Posted by Solstice on December 17, 2011
    [reply] 1 0
    I prefer them, since if nothing else, I can apply them to a larger value item to bring down my personal cost. Also, they make great makeshift bookmarks after the fact.
  • 136064
    Posted by YanBz on December 17, 2011
    [reply] 3 0
    Here is a cool trick I learned today. Here is what you need to do when you buy something on a gift card but qualify for a store charge card discount. Split your transaction into two: charge your store card a small amount (like $1) and charge the rest to the gift card. This way you will get the discount for your entire purchase, and still use your gift card for the most of the charge. I did this today at Kohl's. Beware that other stores may have different policies.
    • DebsFreebies
      10 5 1
      Posted by DebsFreebies on December 17, 2011 [reply] 0 0
      Nice one!
    • 136180
    • sueskabuxr
      Posted by sueskabuxr on December 18, 2011 [reply] 0 0
      Thanks for this great tip!
    • 136522
    • samm_is
      12 8
      Posted by samm_is on December 21, 2011 [reply] 0 0
      YanBz, your method also works at Lowes Home Improvement stores. I keep getting gift cards for Lowes twice a year, because my credit card company periodically offers 20% off on GC deal (i.e. $100 for $80), while Lowes offers 5% off everyday on their store card - Voila!
  • 136113
    Posted by josetring on December 18, 2011
    [reply] 1 0
    #3 works
  • 136146
    3 9
    10 9 2
    Posted by anand on December 18, 2011 [reply] 0 0
    3. Pair your gift card with a coupon

    Saved a lot with this at children's place $20 GC on $40 purchase which also stacked with 30% off entire purchase
    • DebsFreebies
      10 5 1
      Posted by DebsFreebies on December 18, 2011 [reply] 0 0
      Great deal!
  • 136319
    11 8 1
    Posted by equipurple on December 19, 2011 [reply] 0 0
    I am a big proponent of gift cards as we use them a significant fundraiser for our synagogue. Even as a relatively small organization (250 families), we are profiting over $5000 a year by selling them. Personally, we stock up weekly with our local grocery chains and Dunkin Donuts; monthly we keep supplied with retailers like Walmart, Kohls, CVS, Walgreens, Advance Auto Parts, Amazon, Macys; and a reasonable supply of favorite restaurant chains like Red Robin, Bertuccis, Papa Ginos, Applebees, etc.
    We pay the synagogue full face value, so we spend no more than we would. The synagogue in turn buys them from a reseller at a discount, averaging about 5%. (1% for gas stations, 2% Walmart, 4% grocers and Dunkies and Starbucks, about 8% for most restaurants, and we love Bath and Body Works at 19%.). They regularly also send coupons along too.
    • equipurple
      11 8 1
      Posted by equipurple on December 19, 2011 [reply] 0 0
      Holiday times are extra helpful for sales too. One of our members is an accountant, one of whose clients buys 50 $50 gift cards for their employees. That's a $100 donation from them without actually spending the $100.

      BTW, I am happy to introduce you to our supplier or to sell cards to you and split the profits with your group.

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