Another year of celebrations behind you, another stack of unwanted gift cards in a drawer. Billions of dollars in gift cards go unclaimed every year. Chances are some unclaimed dollars are lurking in your house.
Getting rid of those unwanted gift cards is simple and painless. Here are three different options to get the ball rolling.
1. Make a trade
Let’s be honest, the best thing to do with an unwanted gift card is to turn it into something useful. Instead of converting the card to cash you’ll blow, you can trade gift cards with someone else.
While CardCash is a place to buy and sell, but you can trade gift cards too. Once you make an account, the process is easy. Enter the retailer of the gift card you have and which card you want to trade for. Ship in your unwanted card and they’ll send a new one back.
Swap your unwanted gift card for one you'll use. Your wish list and savings account will thank you.
2. Turn it into cold hard cash
If you're grappling with holiday-induced credit card debt, it's worth it to convert your unwanted gift cards to cash. There are a few things to know before you sell your unwanted gift cards.
On gift card resale websites, the rate of exchange varies by brand. Generally, your gift card will fetch 50-90% of its face value.
Cardpool is an excellent choice if you plan to resell. Besides accepting electronic gift cards, Cardpool has physical locations in many cities. That gift card could be off your hands and turned into money before the next workday.
If you’d prefer to handle it from your couch, that’s even easier. Enter the retailer and cash value of the card then wait for Cardpool to make an offer.
Whatever you do, resist the temptation to flip the card on eBay. Between fees, poor value, and the high chance of getting scammed, eBay is more risk for selling your gift cards than it’s worth. The same goes for Craigslist. Save yourself pain. When you sell your unwanted gift cards go with a trusted reseller.
3. Increase your karma
If you’re more interested in finding your unwanted gift cards a new home, consider regifting. Never regift a card to someone who saw you receive it. That is a serious social faux pas. But if you have a co-worker or a friend in a different circle, then regift away.
You can also unload your gift cards on the Random Kindness subreddit. If you meet the membership requirements, make a post stating the kind of gift card and its value.
If you want to give back and get back, the best bet is to donate the gift card to charity. Goodwill and the Salvation Army both accept gift cards. Other charities in your area might too. When tax season comes around, the cash value of the gift card counts as a charitable donation. Win-win!
Written by Erin M Staley.