Monday, November 9, 2009

Beware gift cards, Part Deux

Lions and tigers and bears - and gift cards, oh my!

Yes, we here at have our point of view of course, but please take this post for what it is: consumer warning! We cherish the gift-giving experience so much. Waste - "breakage" in the parlance of the Gift Card Industry - really chaps our collective hide.

So take heed: Gift cards have many potential problems.

Here's an excerpt from The Delaware News Journal:

Gift cards have become wrapped in fine print and loaded with booby traps. Some carry carefully obfuscated fees. Others quietly expire.

Soon, thanks to the new credit card laws passed by Congress, some of those catches will be undone. But not all of them, and certainly not in time for this holiday season.

So shop with care, and keep in mind that not all gift cards are created equal, and that some are endowed by their creator with certain unfathomable blights.

Here's a comment posted to that article:

"I gave my daughter a 75.00 Visa/MC gift card for her birthday. It cost me 3.50 to purchase it (at a bank) and then when she used it exactly one month later, it was only worth 68.00. I'll never buy one again."


More consumer-beware news articles:

The Salt Lake Tribune ("Don't be tripped up by gift card rules")

The Houston Chronicle ("Shop early and take cash")

The Associated Press ("When giving gift cards, understand the pitfalls")

Gift wisely, people.

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