3 Things to Do with Unwanted Gift Cards

“It’s the thought that counts” is a phrase you probably hear a lot during the holiday season. From handmade knit socks ...

“It’s the thought that counts” is a phrase you probably hear a lot during the holiday season. From handmade knit socks to bacon-flavored jellybeans, some gifts miss the mark. Many times, those not-so-great gifts are gift cards. Maybe it’s a store you never shop at or a store that doesn’t have a location near you … thanks, grandma! Did you know that 51 percent of adults have unused gift cards and $3 billion worth of gift cards go unused every year? That’s a lot of wasted money. Here are three ideas on what to do with unwanted gift cards so they don’t go unused this year.

Sell Them Online for Cash

A unique way to get rid of unwanted gift cards is to tell them online for cash. Did you even know that’s a thing? There are many gift card exchange sites you can use: GiftDeals, Raise, CardCash and more! The amount of money you can get varies by card. The more popular the store, the more you’re likely to get for it, but you’ll never receive the full price amount of the card’s value. Most of the gift card exchange websites offer 60 to 90 percent of the original amount back.

Make sure to do research on different gift card exchange websites to find which one is best for you. Compare the prices they offer to buy your card from you, as well as online reviews from previous customers.

Sell Them to a Friend

The easiest way to get rid of an unwanted gift card is to sell it to a friend. You could also propose exchanging your gift card with one of theirs if they’re the same value. Text your family and friends to let them know where the gift card is for and how much you want for it. You’ll never know who might want it until you ask!

You can exchange the gift card for cash or have someone instantly pay you through Venmo. At the end of the day, your friend will be excited to have a brand new gift card to their favorite restaurant and you’ll be excited to have extra cash to spend.

Donate or Regift Them

In the giving spirit of the holiday season, you can always donate or regift unwanted gift cards. Call your local food banks to see if they accept unused gift cards. Gift Card Bank is also a good resource to use. They collect donations of gift cards for groceries and clothing and in return, give them to people in need. Started during COVID-19, Gift Card Bank is able to help improve well-being and financial security to people, just by giving them gift cards.

Another option is to regift the unwanted gift cards to friends or family members. We recommend not giving them back to the person who gave them to you! You can regift them as Christmas presents, birthday presents or even milestone presents to celebrate something exciting in someone’s life. You can also just give to someone out of the blue, you’ll never know how much it might mean to someone.

No matter what you choose to do with unwanted gift cards, it’s better to give them to someone who will use them instead of letting them sit forgotten and unused.

All West wishes everyone very happy holidays!

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