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Gift Cards
Old 11-20-2006, 10:59 AM   #1
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Gift Cards

I have not had a lot of experience with gift cards so I do not know if they are a benefit to me or not. I guess if I get a card without paying anything for it that I have come out on top, but even then, the cost could be buried elsewhere. Of course I fully understand, this is a marketing scheme and the customer always pays for the marketing costs of any product. This seems like an extension of the "coupon" concept where you get a coupon for making a purchase, but the coupon can be used on your next purchase at the store. BUT, fees and an assortment of charges are a negative twist that coupons seem do not have.

Retail store gift cards continue to be a consumer-friendly credit product, with fees and expiration dates the exception rather than the rule. The retailers can make a profit from the merchandise users buy.

Gift cards from the major credit card issuers, though, still carry an assortment of fees. All continue to charge monthly "maintenance" or "dormancy" fees, ranging from $2 per month to $3, if the gift card isn't used within a certain period of time. All but American Express have expiration dates.


http://www.bankrate.com/brm/news/cc/...d_study_a1.asp
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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-20-2006, 01:59 PM   #2
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Re: Gift Cards

I just don't get the appeal of gift cards. Gift cards are nothing but a loophole in the rule that states, "It is tacky and thoughtless to give gifts of cash". I'd rather have the cash.
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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-20-2006, 02:05 PM   #3
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Re: Gift Cards

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob_Smith
I just don't get the appeal of gift cards. Gift cards are nothing but a loophole in the rule that states, "It is tacky and thoughtless to give gifts of cash". I'd rather have the cash.
Same here and cash is what I give to my nephews and niece. Saves me a trip to the department store too.
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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-20-2006, 02:40 PM   #4
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Re: Gift Cards

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Same here and cash is what I give to my nephews and niece
Aww man come on, cash is so 20th century....
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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-20-2006, 02:53 PM   #5
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Re: Gift Cards

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Originally Posted by mickeyd
Aww man come on, cash is so 20th century....
These are all adults. One nephew is building a house. I know he prefers the cash. Hard to believe I'm old enough for one to be 30 years old and building a house.
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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-22-2006, 07:51 AM   #6
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Re: Gift Cards

Gift cards come in handy when you buy them on ebay for a big discount
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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-22-2006, 08:23 AM   #7
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Re: Gift Cards

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Originally Posted by JJac
Gift cards come in handy when you buy them on ebay for a big discount
http://www.snopes.com/fraud/sales/giftcard.asp

Cards filched directly from store racks find their way to online auction sites, where the unsuspecting will bid on them, thinking they're getting a deal. The National Retail Federation advises consumers to purchase gift cards online only through reputable retailers and never through online auction sites, which may be dealing in stolen or counterfeit cards.
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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-22-2006, 08:29 AM   #8
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Re: Gift Cards

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Originally Posted by Khan
http://www.snopes.com/fraud/sales/giftcard.asp

Cards filched directly from store racks find their way to online auction sites, where the unsuspecting will bid on them, thinking they're getting a deal. The National Retail Federation advises consumers to purchase gift cards online only through reputable retailers and never through online auction sites, which may be dealing in stolen or counterfeit cards.
this is ridiculous, I sell and trade gift cards and the ones that you can buy off the rack have to have the pin numbers scratch off before they can be used for online sales...I can't think of one retailer that doesnt have this feature...
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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-22-2006, 08:35 AM   #9
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Re: Gift Cards

gift cards, if bought at the local Giant Eagle grocery store here in the Pittsburgh area,
get you Fuel Perks. Buy a $50 gift card and you get 10 cents/per gallon off the next fill-up ! Buy $100, get 20 cents off, and so on.
Giant Eagle sells gift cards for Home Depot, Radio shack, Toys R US, Amer. Airlines,
Bed Bath Beyond, Gap, Best Buy, and many, many other stores.
I'm not plugging Giant Eagle, but a nice deal if you buy their gas.
.
Some people who want to buy a new kitchen, for example, buy $5000 worth of gift cards, take it to Home Depot, and use it on the new kitchen and get lots of free gas at the same time.
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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-22-2006, 08:43 AM   #10
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Re: Gift Cards

yep....you can buy gift cards at a discount from various clubs (some credit cards) for 20% discounts....so that is probably what you are seeing on fleabay...not nec. fraud, but just resale...and as pointed out, some people have credit cards that get 5% at gas, grocery, and pharmacy (we have 2 chase cards that still are giving us 5%) and buy gift cards at walgreens and at their supermarket esp. around x-mas time....
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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-22-2006, 08:44 AM   #11
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Re: Gift Cards

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob_Smith
I just don't get the appeal of gift cards. Gift cards are nothing but a loophole in the rule that states, "It is tacky and thoughtless to give gifts of cash". I'd rather have the cash.
Agreed, I don't get it.

I go around with my wife on this. She thinks a gift card is more 'personal' - like you took the time to think about what store that person likes to shop at. Wow, how thoughtful.

To me, the gift card is less of a 'gift' than cash. For the recipient, you just limited their shopping choices, they need to carry the card with them, and if they buy less than the face $, they need to carry it and remember to use it later, and then there are all the loopholes about time limits.

Sheesh. If you want to get personal, give them the cash and write a nice letter - 'I thought you could use this money for the xyz you've been looking at, But I know you want to pick the size and styles, or maybe had another use for the money'.

To me, that is better than, 'Here, get something at Best Buy, nope, not Circuit City (even though they may have exactly what you want at a better price), but Best Buy'. or vice-versa.

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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-22-2006, 09:18 AM   #12
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Re: Gift Cards

I personally think 'gift cards' are tacky!!!

I would MUCH prefer CASH!!! Show me da money!!! I can spend cash anywhere "I" want!!!
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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-22-2006, 09:46 AM   #13
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Re: Gift Cards

Quote:
Originally Posted by Goonie
I personally think 'gift cards' are tacky!!!
Y'all can send me your Home Depot gift cards. Lowe's too.*

Shipping & handling fees may apply, as well as a nominal processing fee. This offer limited to cash on hand and may change at any time. No refunds or credits!
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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-22-2006, 10:46 AM   #14
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Re: Gift Cards

Nobody I know even shops for my gifts anymore. Seriously, everybody (except my dad) gets me Best Buy gift cards

It makes me a happy man
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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-22-2006, 10:57 AM   #15
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Re: Gift Cards

I've always felt like giving cash is sort of tacky too. But SO gives gift cards to the newlywed son and his DW. If we give them cash we don't know where it's going to go. They seem to give every spare penny to their church, and they don't have many spare pennies. Find if that's what they want to do, but we don't really want to participate.

This year we bought them a Sears GC - enought options there that they can get something useful.
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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-22-2006, 11:51 AM   #16
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Re: Gift Cards

They are a little different from cash, in that they force you to use the money for something other than, say, the electric bill.

I can pretty much buy anything that I need, but sometimes there's something I'd kind of like to have, but can't quite justify. For example, I ride my bike with two mismatched gloves. I can't quite justify new bike gloves, because these work fine, but they'd be fun as a gift.

If someone gives me cash, I might not spend it on bike gloves, but if I had a gift certificate for the bike store, I might get them.
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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-22-2006, 01:31 PM   #17
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Re: Gift Cards

My parents have always given me cash, they call it the green gift certificate good at any store. I use it that way too. The reasoning by them is I can use it anywhere and they don't have to worry about the store going out of business the day after Xmass. The last time they gave a GC to someone that's what happened, they swore from that point on it would be cash only.
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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-22-2006, 01:58 PM   #18
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Re: Gift Cards

If someone does give me cash, I always make a point of buying something specific with it and letting them know.

I think gracious giving and receiving is a dying art in our culture.

SIL and DIL never sent thank you cards for the gifts given at their wedding in March. Including a VERY generous hunk of $$ from SO.

I always send a thank you card for any gift, or even a nice dinner. There is a package of pretty cards on my desk, envelopes stamped with pretty matching stamps. It's SO easy to jot a few lines, and people are usually pleasantly suprised. I know I am when I get a little handwritten note in the mail.

I just hate the idea that gift giving has turned into a black hole of people throwing money at each other.

The other thing I hate is "I'll buy you this, and you buy me that, and we'll call it Christmas, but we won't bother wrapping a gift, or putting it under the tree, and while you're at it why don't you just pick it out, since you know what you want...

Ooops. End of Rant. Stepping sheepishly off soap box.
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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-22-2006, 02:17 PM   #19
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Re: Gift Cards

My retirement gift was $100 gift card for the local mall. I go there less than once a year. I hate shopping.

It took 6 months to get to the mall and I spent all $100 on books and food.

Ideally they would have given one from the local grocery or hardware store.

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Re: Gift Cards
Old 11-22-2006, 02:18 PM   #20
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Re: Gift Cards

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheryl
The other thing I hate is "I'll buy you this, and you buy me that, and we'll call it Christmas, but we won't bother wrapping a gift, or putting it under the tree, and while you're at it why don't you just pick it out, since you know what you want...
Hey! What's wrong with that? It's a simple variation of the honorable wish list.

I was going to take this one step further with a web site (I never launched) a few years ago. It basically went like this: you buy your own gift, and I'll pay you back.
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