Throughout the year there are many occasions when we need to purchase gifts. Whether the gift is for Christmas, a birthday, a special occasion or just because sometimes gift cards can be the best choice. The exception to this would probably be the person that has enough money to buy whatever they want, whenever they want. In that case, I would suggest a handmade personalize gift to make it a bit different than they can just go to the store and throw in their cart.
Why gift cards might be a good choice
But many people don’t fall into that category and often they never do anything for themselves. Sometimes they get caught up in paying bills and taking care of everyone else. For these people gift cards can be a wonderful gift to receive. Maybe they never go to the movies or out to eat because they feel it would be a frivolous expense. Or perhaps they simply can’t afford such luxuries. In this case, a gift card works out great and can help provide a special treat.
You can look at it two ways. Either you want to get the person a gift card to somewhere where they absolutely have to spend it on themselves and not their bills, or kids or someone besides themselves. Or sometimes you might want to give a gift card to them that they can spend anywhere because if they do buy something they need maybe it is taking some stress out of their lives by having that expense taken care of for them. If you really know the person than this won’t be a difficult choice.
And then of course grandparents that don’t live close always make a good choice with a gift card. The postage is not high and if you aren’t around the grandchildren a lot you might not know exactly what they want anyway. With a gift card they can get whatever they want.
Many people don’t realize that they can save money on a gift card. Never pay full price for a gift card. There are many ways to save.
Sam’s Club and Costco both offer gift cards at less than face value. Sometimes you have to buy a large amount to get the discount but this does work well when you frequent a certain restaurant often.
Many places will run specials where if you purchase a gift card for $20 or higher you get one free for $5 to use on a future visit or to give away.
Check out Groupon to see if there are any gift card deals. Not all deals are only local and sometimes you can hit the jackpot.
Many stores will offer a $10 gift card after you spend a certain amount of money. If it is somewhere that you already shop routinely this is a great deal. Keep in mind that the stores that do this generally are not the type of stores where you find the best deals but sometimes they have exactly the item you want.
Sometimes you can find the best deals on gift cards on Ebay. You can look under gift card sales or under gift card auctions. The most popular gift cards you might save 5-10% which is great but sometimes there will be a gift card to a store that you have never even heard of before. By doing a little research you can figure out if the store carries items you would be purchasing anyway.
In this case, by buying the card on Ebay you could save as much as 50%. Be sure that you use Paypal to pay for your purchase so that you are protected in the case of fraud.
If you cannot find gift cards for less you can always go to Ebates.com and purchase one there and get the cash back so that at least you are saving in some way.
Remember that it isn’t really a sale if you have to spend money you never intended to spend or that particular store carries merchandise that is very expensive or that you don’t really need.
There are other ways to save on gift cards that I have purposely left out because they may not be on the up and up. Be sure to thoroughly investigate if you try something new.
Keep in mind that you can use gift cards to save money for your own shopping. For instance, if you know you are going to be making a purchase at Target and you find a $100 gift card for $90 you have already saved money before you even go to the store. You might even be able to save more with coupons once you are in the store. (more on that later)
I hope you find some great sales!