To Gift Card or Not?

Gift CardWell the holiday season is upon us. Hopefully by now everyone has finished their Christmas shopping. If not you can always grab a gift card for that special someone.

Gift cards are easy to get, you can pick up gift cards just about anywhere and for just about anything. You can get them at convenience stores like 7Eleven or any department store. Gift cards com in different values $5.00, $10.00, $25.00 etc… Or you can load them with any amount you like. You can also get Visa or Mastercard gift cards, where you can use them anywhere. Gift cards also let the receiver get the gift they want, no need to return the crappy gift you gave them the day after Christmas. And they are easier to ship to someone, all you have to do is put them in a card and mail them where ever you want.

On the other hand gift cards do have their downfalls. Gift cards do expire, some have hidden fees. If you lose the card you are out of luck and lost the money. Gift cards are not always the most personal thing to give. Would you give your wife or partner a gift card for Christmas, it don’t really show that you care that much. What do you do with all the small amounts left on the gift cards? Just seems like money wasted if you leave a few dollars on a gift card.

But really what is the difference to just give cash. Then the recipient can go where ever they wanted. They don’t have to go to Old Navy to spend those gift cards, maybe they hate Old Navy. At least with cash they can save it up and buy one big gift. You can’t do that if you get gift cards from different stores.

This brings up a good question, are gift card to impersonal? Do you give gift cards? Are they a good or bad idea? What’s your take on giving or receiving gift cards? Personally I love gift cards, I just need everyone to send cards from the same place.

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