Let’s use up those forgotten gift cards!

by J. MONEY – Published DECEMBER 4, 2019 originally on Budgets Are Sexy


So today is not National Use Your Gift Card Day, but I just learned that it’s a thing (celebrated January 18th next year), and rather than wait for that glorious day to come I thought we’d kick off the party early since EVERY DAY is a great day to cash in those forgotten gifts 😉

And forgotten is an understatement as apparently we give up close to $1 BILLION of unused gift cards every single year!! One billion!! Of FREE money!

Now maybe that’s due to us losing them, or even more probable – not *liking* the ones we’ve gotten and forgetting about them on purpose – but in any case that’s a lot of cash to throw down the drain and I say today we make a dent in that $1,000,000,000. Let’s see if we can get it down to at least $999,999,000, shall we? 😉 I think we can collectively use up $1,000, right?

It’s as easy as 1) collecting them all up and then making it your mission to finally USE THEM!, or 2) picking out any of these other options below if it’s indeed a card you couldn’t care less about:

  • Using it to buy something for someone *else*
  • Re-gifting the card, so long as you don’t give it back to the original gifter! (very important)
  • Donating it to a local charity who will find a good us for it
  • Swapping them at any of those gift card swapper sites (Cardpool, Raise, GiftCardGranny)
  • Selling them at any of those gift card swapper sites
  • Giving them away on your blog/social/anywhere else your friends gather together
  • Or lastly, being adventurous for once and just TRYING THEM OUT! 😉

Or if you’re one who prefers to plan ahead with such things and not take on random challenges from money bloggers online, haha, here are some ways to at least help you REMEMBER to use them later so you don’t forget all over again:

  • Clip them to your fridge!
  • Store them in your cell phone case/work lanyard/wallet you always carry with you
  • Stash them in your car console! (Yes, perhaps they could get stolen one day, but if you’ve already “lost” them what does it matter? Haha… That’s where I keep all mine anyways – that way whenever I show up to a place and then kick myself for not remembering the card, Past Me does me a solid by having it right there with me in the car! Which also works well for any *returns* I need to do too which I also used to be notorious for forgetting…)
  • And then finally, adding up calendar items to alert you to use them – along with the expiration date – also make for excellent reminders

Lots of ways to complete the mission, but just make sure you indeed complete it!! One billion dollars is a ton of money to waste, not to mention the kind gesture from your loved ones who thought of you in the first place… So if you don’t do it for you, do it at least for them dammit! 😉

I’ll pass out another reminder come NUYGCD (National Use Your Gift Card Day), but in the meantime let’s see if we can hit our goal of using up $1,000 this week!! Let me know when you’ve completed it and I’ll tally it all up!

PS: I’m going to finally use our 5 year old movie theater gift card I keep forgetting about 🙂 Frozen 2 here we come!!! Lol…

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