Tips for giving and spending those gift cards

Christmas: Gift Cards

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4 Ways to Ditch an Unwanted Gift Card


It's not the piece of plastic you were hoping for. Your aunt just bought you a gift card for a store at which you never shop. Now what? After you say "thank you" (because it really is the thought that counts), you can turn that unwanted card into a great gift -- for you or someone else. Here are 4 ways.

4 Ways to Profit from a Gift Card You Don't Want

Rich Finzer

It's a common story. You never play sports, but a family member or friend gives you a sports store gift card. You don't cook, but a well-intentioned friend gave you a gift card to a kitchen store. Sound familiar? If you were the recipient of an unwanted gift card, here are some tips on getting the most out of a gift card you may not ever redeem.

Getting the Most from Gift Cards

Veronica Bowman

When you receive gifts cards, it's the equivalent of getting free money to use as you wish. Living on a tight budget often means there's little or no money left for fun stuff after you've paid bills. You could immediately rush out and enjoy a shopping spree or dining experience with your gift card, and there's certainly nothing wrong with that. Or you could make it work for you in a variety of ways.

How to Swap Unwanted Gift Cards

Reader Solutions

Every year it happens. Family and co-workers give you gift cards for stores where you don't shop. So what's the best way to trade them for cash or cards for the stores you use most often? Are there any good sites that facilitate trades? Our readers give their solutions.

8 Ways to Prevent Getting Cheated on Gift Cards

Joanne Guidoccio

It's easy to toss gift cards into drawers, especially during busy holiday seasons, and forget about them. Some cards are lost. Other cards expire. To get the most from your gift cards, consider these eight suggestions.

Gift Cards: Use Them Before You Lose Them

Bill Hardekopf

The holiday presents have been unwrapped and most of us received at least one gift card. Now is the time to shop with these cards while they are still fresh in our hands and on our minds.

The Changing Landscape of Unused Gift Cards

Bill Hardekopf

Gift cards are a popular gift to give and receive. However, if they are not used, they may be turned over to your state government as unclaimed property. Escheatment laws have required financial institutions to report and remit abandoned or unclaimed intangible property to the state. This has historically applied to uncashed checks, bank accounts, and mutual funds. But in a time of budget cuts and shortages, many states have expanded escheatment rulings to include unused gift cards

Gift Cards: Using Holiday Loot

Linda Shapero

What do you do with all this paper and plastic that translates into cash for you to spend on yourself? The possibilities are endless and what a delicious dilemma! No matter what you choose, there are a few things to keep in mind before you go shopping.

Before Giving a Gift Card

courtesy of NAPSA

Gift cards are among the most popular gifts during the holiday season. Many believe their popularity comes from being a convenient, flexible and safe. But along with all these benefits, gift cards also come with fine print that you need to read carefully.

Wrapping Holiday Gift Cards

Reader Solutions

Giving gift cards as gift and need some creative wrapping ideas? We have just what you need. Our readers share their "out of the box" ideas.

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