Author Topic: Couldn't even spend a gift card  (Read 6780 times)

marty998

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Couldn't even spend a gift card
« on: December 27, 2012, 10:01:53 PM »
So I've had a $25 gift card in my wallet for the past 11 months. Due to expire in a month so I walked into the store this morning.

After half an hour of wandering aimlessly I found a jacket - which I probably don't need but its nice to update your wardrobe - reduced from $50 to $10. Gives you an idea of retail markups down-under if they can offload it for $10 instead of RRP.

So now I've got to come up with a way of spending the last $15 on the card.

Can this blog...this ideal...this way of life have such an effect that you can get to a point where it is difficult to spend free money?

happy

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #1 on: December 27, 2012, 11:01:41 PM »
Sounds like it! Well done.
 
I've had a similar problem with a gift card for a popular shop which really only sells junk. I found it really hard to buy stuff we didn't need. Alas I also waited til the last to spend it, otherwise I might have tried to "Re-gift" it.

On the other hand the increased valuing of money I have learnt has meant I have not lost or let vouchers and so on expire, which I might have done in the past.

directionseeker

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2012, 12:39:11 AM »
Can this blog...this ideal...this way of life have such an effect that you can get to a point where it is difficult to spend free money?

Well done! Proud of you!

I have been thinking much more since I start reading this blog, it does helps me on decision whether is the "stuff" on the shelves really necessary.


Ottawa

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2012, 05:53:35 AM »
A couple things we've done in this situation :
1) regift (not really that good...but it might save you from having to spend)
2) sell it on kijiji or Craigslist - there's always a sucka out there - even if you discount it
3) as above but trade for equal value card that you actually use
4) give it to charity

Blackbomber

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #4 on: December 28, 2012, 07:48:22 AM »
I like Ottawa's Charity idea. I support some local charities (where I know the people personally, and can trust them). I know some of the needs, and how the card would be put to good use, as opposed to wasted (on myself). Or they could use it in one of their silent auctions. The feel good benefits of this would be far greater than owning something not needed. I've never thought of this, but it's a wonderful idea, and I'll be adopting it myself.

Edit:
I thought I'd add that the most recent gift cards I received were Home Depot, Lowes, Amazon, and Starbucks. The first three were well needed for my home projects (got some nice under cabinet lighting parts from Amazon) and used by me. The Starbucks were given to the wife.
« Last Edit: December 28, 2012, 08:06:57 AM by Blackbomber »

spider1204

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #5 on: December 28, 2012, 08:12:10 AM »
There are a bunch of websites that will buy gift cards from you at 50-90% of their values depending their popularity.  Most notably, Cardpool, but if you search for the others you can find better rates depending on the cards.

Zaga

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #6 on: December 28, 2012, 08:22:59 AM »
Instead of exactly re-gifting, can you buy something with the remaining money as a gift for someone maybe?  That would keep it from expiring.

Catbert

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #7 on: December 28, 2012, 08:48:36 AM »
In your case (rapidly expiring, low value gift card) I would have handed the gift card with remaining balance to someone else in the store. 

gdborton

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #8 on: December 28, 2012, 09:11:06 AM »
What store is it for?  I would think that $15 or so could be used to buy something mustachian.  Places like Walmart would have Low flow shower heads, CFL bulbs, furnace filters, water heater jackets.  At clothing stores you could pick up undies or socks on sale before you need new ones.  Tools are always a good idea.  Car maintenance items can be cheap... oil, pcv valve, air filter, spark plugs (you'll need these eventually, why not buy with free money?).

Sure it can be hard to spend for spending's sake, but I'm sure you can find a good use for that money no matter what store it is for.

chucklesmcgee

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #9 on: December 28, 2012, 10:55:00 AM »
so I walked into the store this morning.

After half an hour of wandering aimlessly...

Here's an idea- plunk yourself in front of the register and offer someone with a cartful of stuff $20 for your $25 card. Most people with cash will have a $20 bill and it would be pretty silly of them to turn down an instant $5 discount. You probably can unload it in a few seconds if you've taken the trouble to get all the way to the store.

gdborton

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #10 on: December 28, 2012, 12:58:04 PM »
Quote
Here's an idea- plunk yourself in front of the register and offer someone with a cartful of stuff $20 for your $25 card.

That'd be pretty mean considering there is only $15 left on the card.  I'm sure you missed that though, so I'm just being an ass :P

dragoncar

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #11 on: December 28, 2012, 02:16:16 PM »
Buy item then return it.  Temporary solution?

marty998

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #12 on: December 28, 2012, 02:30:28 PM »
its gone, given to family. Always the best option.

What store is it for?  I would think that $15 or so could be used to buy something mustachian.  Places like Walmart would have Low flow shower heads, CFL bulbs, furnace filters, water heater jackets.  At clothing stores you could pick up undies or socks on sale before you need new ones.  Tools are always a good idea.  Car maintenance items can be cheap... oil, pcv valve, air filter, spark plugs (you'll need these eventually, why not buy with free money?).

Sure it can be hard to spend for spending's sake, but I'm sure you can find a good use for that money no matter what store it is for.

It was a sport store. Possibly as far removed from spark plugs as you could get :)  - and I'm never ever getting a low flow shower head ever again. I'm like Kramer from Seinfeld - need more pressure!

DocCyane

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #13 on: December 28, 2012, 06:06:06 PM »
Gift cards are our favorite treats. We spent one today at the grocery, but waited for a deal on chicken before we went for it.

Yes, we're even careful with "found" money.

The Money Monk

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #14 on: January 08, 2013, 03:57:11 PM »
A couple things we've done in this situation :
1) regift (not really that good...but it might save you from having to spend)
2) sell it on kijiji or Craigslist - there's always a sucka out there - even if you discount it
3) as above but trade for equal value card that you actually use
4) give it to charity


When I get a git card for a store that I never go to, I always just sell it on ebay. If it is a popular store you will get shockingly close to the face value. Even after ebay takes their cut and you pay for a stamp you'll get 80 or 90% of the value back usually.

Or Just save and re-gift it.

Steel_Rain

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #15 on: January 08, 2013, 04:07:20 PM »
To be honest, I do not even understand the concept of a gift card.  On the one hand if you give one, its clear you did not put any thought into the gift and on the other its the same as cash but more limited.  In my mind, if you are going to give a gift you dont have to think about, give the cash and call it a day :)

Steel;

sol

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #16 on: January 08, 2013, 04:40:25 PM »
To be honest, I do not even understand the concept of a gift card.  On the one hand if you give one, its clear you did not put any thought into the gift and on the other its the same as cash but more limited.  In my mind, if you are going to give a gift you dont have to think about, give the cash and call it a day :)

My family typically gives gift cards in order to force spending on luxury items as gifts.  For example, my parents know that if they sent me a $75 check, I'm going to put it in the bank and never think about it again and it will disappear into our growing stash.  So instead, they give us a $75 gift card to a fancy steak house that we would never normally eat at, to encourage us to live a little. 

We've also received gift cards for things like bungee jumping and hot air balloon rides.  They're giving an experience which they think will be more valuable than the cash.

Steel_Rain

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #17 on: January 08, 2013, 05:21:21 PM »
Hehe, but since you would put the cash in your stash, clearly you dont agree with them :)  They mean well, so its hard to begrudge them their indulgence.

Steel.

smalllife

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #18 on: January 08, 2013, 07:22:58 PM »
It was a sport store. Possibly as far removed from spark plugs as you could get :) 

Sports stores generally have good socks :-)  Nice, thick wool ones too.


mindaugas

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #19 on: January 09, 2013, 10:59:31 AM »
I had $150 in gift cards from xmas and spent it in less than a week for PC parts. No regrets.

momo

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #20 on: January 10, 2013, 10:54:44 AM »
Usually the gift cards received are for businesses I rarely frequent. If this is your situation consider reselling them and get a gift card for someplace you use. https://www.plasticjungle.com/main might be worth researching further.

eyePod

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #21 on: January 10, 2013, 12:33:06 PM »
its gone, given to family. Always the best option.

What store is it for?  I would think that $15 or so could be used to buy something mustachian.  Places like Walmart would have Low flow shower heads, CFL bulbs, furnace filters, water heater jackets.  At clothing stores you could pick up undies or socks on sale before you need new ones.  Tools are always a good idea.  Car maintenance items can be cheap... oil, pcv valve, air filter, spark plugs (you'll need these eventually, why not buy with free money?).

Sure it can be hard to spend for spending's sake, but I'm sure you can find a good use for that money no matter what store it is for.

It was a sport store. Possibly as far removed from spark plugs as you could get :)  - and I'm never ever getting a low flow shower head ever again. I'm like Kramer from Seinfeld - need more pressure!

I bought a bunch of bike stuff that I wouldn't have spent money on.  Warmer clothes, a windproof jacket, bike chain lube, etc.

frugalcoconut

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #22 on: January 10, 2013, 08:06:08 PM »
I recently received a $25 gift card for Spafinder.com.  The theory behind the gift made sense ... some pampering is always nice.  The problem is that $25 doesn't get you a whole lot in the spa world.  I ended up putting it up on eBay and amazingly it sold ultra-quickly for $20 so I was happy.

I always find it amazing that people pay the $4.95 fee for a $25 or $50 generic VISA/AMEX gift card.  I'd rather have the cash so that I can deposit it straight into my bank account (and eliminate the fee altogether) ... but at least I'll still be able to use the gift card without much restriction otherwise, and it will offset my costs from routine/non-routine transactions such that my outflows will be slightly lower the following month. 

kolorado

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #23 on: January 11, 2013, 08:21:12 AM »
We have a hard time spending gift cards too unless it's for groceries or Walmart.
 As parents of three young kids, people love to give us restaurant gift cards. Yes, we can all eat on $50 but the hassle of keeping three rambunctious kids calm enough to even enjoy our meal is no "night out". If they think we're going to hire a sitter at $30 an evening just to spend a $50 gift card they don't know us at all. :/
I'm going to look into selling the two cards I know we have on hand now. 6+ months and no use date in sight.

James

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Re: Couldn't even spend a gift card
« Reply #24 on: January 11, 2013, 08:32:55 AM »
Usually the gift cards received are for businesses I rarely frequent. If this is your situation consider reselling them and get a gift card for someplace you use. https://www.plasticjungle.com/main might be worth researching further.

I get a $545 gift card to Best Buy every year or two (it's a work thing, nothing I can change), and I sold the last one on plastic jungle for $480 which is pretty good.  I just got one a couple weeks ago and due to the holidays the redemption would be $463 for the $545 card, so I'm waiting a bit to see if it goes back up to $480.  I can't think of anything I would want to buy at Best Buy, or even driving the hour to go look.  So selling the card is a easy decision, it's just a matter of where and when I can get the most cash out of it.  Next time I hope to time it for before Christmas, I imagine that is when I could get the highest redemption price.