National Use Your Gift Card Day reminds Americans to use the $1 billion in gift cards left unused each year. On the third Saturday in January, take stock of the gift cards you received over the holidays. Make the most of each one of them before they’re forgotten for good!
We all do it. Stash away gift cards thinking we will have more time later to use them. They collect dust and disappear into an abyss somewhere. We discover them as we clean and often don’t remember how much was on the card or if we used a portion of it. Those partial balances add up, too! The first step is to collect the cards together and see what you have. You know where to look.
- Every pocket of every purse and wallet you have
- The infamous junk drawer
- Glove compartment of the car
- Bottom of the toy box (it may have been used to scrape goo off a toy)
- The other junk drawer
- A gift bag with the tissue paper still in it
- The toolbox (we know what happens when a flathead screwdriver can’t be found)
Once you have your gift cards, get organized. Where do the gift cards work? Restaurants, retail, and services all offer gift cards. Some gift cards are designed to be used just about anywhere.
Maximizing Your Gift
- Check for deals to maximize your gift cards. In most cases, gift cards work just like cash and can be used with coupons. There are exceptions, however, so it’s always good to check first.
- Is the card to a place you don’t shop? You have a few options:
- See if the card is good at a companion location
- Check to see if the gift card can be cashed out
- Have a gift card swap party or sell your gift card for cash
- Donate your gift card to a charity fundraiser like a silent auction
- Plan to overspend the amount of the gift card to avoid having small balances lying around. Even if you add a small useful item (lip balm is always handy) to go a penny over the amount, you’ll be able to hand the card over to the retailer to recycle the card.
HOW TO OBSERVE #UseYourGiftCardDay
Collect your gift cards. It’s time to use them. Don’t let them sit for a year and risk losing your gift altogether. Maximize your gift cards with deals and get the most out of your gift cards, too. Have a shopping spree or a spa day with your gift cards. Don’t let those gifts and savings pass you by! Use #UseYourGiftCardDay to share on social media.
NATIONAL USE YOUR GIFT CARD DAY HISTORY
Tilson PR founded National Use Your Gift Card Day in 2020 to make sure everyone gets the most out of their gift cards. Leave no gift card unturned and find tips, ideas, and deals by visiting useyourgiftcard.com, too.