Saving: Unwanted Gift Cards

January 10, 2012 1:50:31 PM PST
Gift cards - they're easy to buy, easy to ship, and easy to use. It may seem like the perfect present, but what do you do with gift cards you know you won't use?

According to the National Retail Federation, 80 percent of consumers planned to buy gift cards as presents this year. But many of those cards will never get used. That's $41 billion dollars on gift cards that went unspent!

Many websites give you up to 92% cash back when you sell your gift card. They include Gift Card Granny, Cardpool, and

Of course, you can also swap or exchange your gift card for another one at a retailer you like better.

But, if you're looking to buy a gift card, you can pick one up at a discount by going to one of these websites.

Now, here's a very cool service we hadn't heard of before. Say you want to give someone a gift card but you don't know which retailers they like best. You can check out the site icard

Here's how it works. You select the dollar amount of your gift and message. Then the gift recipient receives an email with your gift card and a certificate with a redemption code. You can also print the gift card to give it in person. Then the recipient can redeem you gift amount at the merchant of their choice. There's a long list of restaurants and stores to choose from and the recipient can redeem your entire gift amount at one store or split it across multiple merchants. Also, they can redeem some of the gift now and more later, or spend it all in one shot.

There are also some more sites that deal with gift cards: