Friday, July 16, 2010

Gift Card Dilemma

What do you get the person who either has everything HE wants, or won't specify anything HE would like to have? The 2010 answer is "a gift card." But if HE won't specify a merchant, it is difficult to decide.

To solve this dilemma, someone gave HIM a VISA gift card for Christmas. The gift card went where all gift cards go -- to a pile that sometimes gets sorted through, but mostly gets ignored. When I moved something in our guest room yesterday I dicovered it.  With an expiration date of 5/10.  Yep. Expired in May.

I went on-line to see if there was a process by which I could extend its life.  In doing so, I discovered that the $50 gift card was now worth only $41.00!  For each month HE has held onto it, it has been charged a service fee of $1.50!

Now my SON has the same problem with gift cards. When we did the cleaning of the Aegean Stables recently, I found at least 7 of them, mostly for book companies (I know, can you believe that?).  We verified the balance on all of them, and are in the process of using them. NONE of them charge a service fee each month. Some of them are from Christmas 2008!

So, my advice is DO NOT GIVE VISA GIFT CARDS. And if you're getting something for MY husband, do not get a gift card at all.

I will give the company kudos that they're going to replace the card sans replacement fee...but no adding back the $1.50 per month.  Sheesh.


quilly said...

This is what Amoeba and I have done -- we've quit exchanging gifts. Really, once you wrap your mind around the idea, it works. If I want something, I mention it and we discuss it and I am apt to get the "gift" whenever we can afford it rather than on this or that specified occasion. I do the same for Amoeba. I recently charmed him with something he had kept saying he had to get around to picking up -- I just went online and ordered it shipped to him. It wasn't a great or an extravagant gift, but it proved I was listening and I cared. We've been doing this for a couple of years now and we really like it.

SouthLakesMom said...

That would work within our home -- it's those relatives who feel they HAVE to give SOMETHING...

And I think it is a little different, too, when you still have kids in the house. The excitement they have about the gifts at the holidays is palpable...and fuels our joy in giving to them.