Why People Hate Receiving Gift Cards

by admin on February 12, 2011

Why is it we love giving gift cards but hate getting them? Some people are hard to shop for, and gift cards save us the trouble of looking for presents. At the same time, it is not as bad as giving cash to friends and relatives, whereby it becomes obvious that you couldn’t think of a present. So, gift cards are a nice midway route for the gift giver? No?

You may find that the receiver easily sees through your ploy. They may not be happy with a little plastic store-branded card. One of the reasons for this is because the money is locked up. You can use the card only at a certain store. How do you know the person wants to go shopping there? What if they can’t find anything they like? Plus, it is impossible to get cash back in the amount you paid for the card. They may end up losing or not using the card, which is every company’s dream. A lot of people have cards from years ago, stowed away somewhere in their homes. Most of the gift cards have expiration dates. This fact compels people to rush into getting something, which they may later find was not what they really wanted. But they buy it anyways because they didn’t have enough time to think about it. Another problem is the small balance that inevitably remains on the card. You have to look very hard for something for approximately that amount or buy whatever you want and pay the difference. You end up buying your own present. The company’s happy either way, but will you be?  There is nothing wrong with giving cold hard cash when you are completely out of ideas. And it you are giving them to close people, money would be in most cases welcome.

Another thing – do not fall for the Visa gift card deal. Supposedly, this card can be used anywhere that takes Visa. However, the activation fee is a considerable part of the balance, and the purchase has to be less than the balance on the card.

Notwithstanding these facts, statistics show that Canadians spend around $6 billion a year on gift cards. The data pertaining to other nations is similar. The situation is considerably problematic to the extent that the president of the Consumers Association of Canada recommends that people do not buy gift cards. Most of the complaints regarding the cards involve their expiration dates. Statistics in the United States indicate that 25 per cent of gift cards are never redeemed precisely because they expire. Recent data shows that just 17 per cent of the Canadians want a gift card for the holidays this year. In fact, around 35 per cent (the majority) feel the best present would be spending the holidays with friends or family.

If you simply must buy a gift card for whatever reason, you should at least know what the good ones are. The Costco Cash Card is a nice and practical choice to consider. It covers warehouse items, household appliances, and electronics, and you do not even need to be a member of Costco in order to use it. Amazon is probably the easiest card to use. You can buy, send, and use it electronically; so, you won’t have to deal with the hassle of going to the mall and mingling with annoying holiday shoppers. The card can be used for a variety of things including movies, music, and book downloads.

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