5 Reasons Gift Cards are Perfect

by Miranda Marquit · 4 comments

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I love gift cards. They are my favorite gift — to give and to receive.

Gift cards make great presents for a number of reasons. If you still aren’t sure what to get for the special people in your life, gift cards make a good choice. Here are five reasons gift cards are the perfect gifts:

1. You Can Easily Stay on Budget

When you provide gift cards, it’s easier to stay on budget. You don’t have to worry about spending just a little bit more for something you see that would be “perfect” but outside your limit. With gift cards, you just decide on an amount and that’s it. It’s easier to keep to your budget because it’s sort of like having cash in your hand for a specific store.

2. You Can Save with Discounted Gift Cards and Deals

You can save money by giving discounted gift cards. I used to get gift cards at a $5 or $10 discount off their face value. This worked very well with restaurants. Many dining establishments know that someone coming in with a gift card is likely to spend more than what’s on there. The idea is to get them in the door. Look for discounted gift cards and deals from reputable sites.

3. Flexibility

Gift cards are flexible for the recipient, allowing him or her to choose what to buy. It takes away some of the anxiety associated with finding just the right gift. Who doesn’t like the freedom to get what they REALLY want? It’s a perfect way to provide a flexible gift that anyone can enjoy.

That flexibility also means that the recipient can choose an experience instead of a thing. That means a lot to someone who doesn’t want to buy things, and prefers experiences instead.

Cash is more flexible, of course, but it is sometimes considered a little crass. If you want to offer flexibility without giving actual cash, a gift card is a good choice.

David’s Note: I’m Asian and we don’t have a problem with cash gifts at all. It’s just what we become accustomed to because we get red pockets with cash inside during Chinese New Year. And by the way, you are welcome to send some my way if you’d like at any time (haha).

4. An Element of Thoughtfulness

Of course, many people decry gift cards because they are so general. While getting a prepaid debit card or general gift card is very flexible, some people think they are impersonal.

A gift card doesn’t have to be impersonal, though. Get a gift card to a favorite store or restaurant to show that you’ve put some thought into it. Gift cards are perfect because they combine the flexibility of cash with the personalization that comes with a specific store. You can be thoughtful and offer a flexible gift at the same time.

5. Easy to Present Attractively

I love how easy it is to give a gift card. Wrapping presents can lead to messiness, as the presentation isn’t always great. Not so with a gift card. You can slip it into a beautiful holiday card and write a sincere note. There are attractive gift card holders you can buy for the right presentation too.

No one is ever disappointed to receive a gift card. Add a personal touch with a handwritten note and be choosy about where you get the gift card, and it will feel like a very personal gift, without all that comes with trying to find the right present.

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  • Michele Cooper says:

    Gift cards provide the freedom to choose. You can also extend the value of the card so that whoever receives it can take advantage of the post holiday promotions as well. Also make sure to look for gift cards with no expiration dates or hidden fees, so recipients can enjoy them on their own terms.

  • Jeff | VTX Capital says:

    You’re right, gift cards do help you stay on budget. And with sites like Card Pool and such, you’re able to score just about any kind of gift card at a discount these days.

  • Jonathan Dyer says:

    I completely agree. I know some people don’t think gift cards are very thoughtful but I argue that they very well can be if you get creative. Additionally, as you mentioned re: budgeting and bonuses, there may even be reason for people to buy gift cards for themselves during this time of year if you have purchases to make in the coming months.

  • Sanjib Kumar Saha says:

    Hi Miranda,
    I must agree, it is true that a gift card can be presented attractively. A gift card expresses one’s feelings without speaking. I have used these cards in my school time a lot. Singing a happy birthday song to my teachers, giving them these cards as a present made them jubilant and it is also budget friendly for students.
    Thank you, Miranda, for sharing this useful information with us.
    Happy Holidays!

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