Unwanted gift cards
Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/wonderdawg777/4264535669/

Gift cards are very popular among both gift givers and receivers these days. But what do you do If your Uncle Ned gives you a gift card for a department store in a different part of the country, or you are a devout Mormon and the boss gives you a Starbucks card? Here are some options for getting rid of unwanted gift cards.


Regifting may be a faux pas for really distinctive items, but unless you gift card is somehow personalized you could just find someone who would want your gift card and no one would ever know. You have given someone a gift they would want at no additional cost to you.


Many charities will happily accept your gift cards for use in their work. Battered women’s shelters and organizations that work with the homeless usually have a need for gift cards that can be used to purchase food, personal care items, and clothing. Other organizations may want your gift cards to purchase office supplies or support the administrative functions of the organization.


You can sell nearly anything on eBay, and this includes gift cards. It is as easy as writing up a short description with the name of the store and the amount of the card, choosing what payment methods you will accept, and specifying any other terms of sale. Just watch out for the various eBay and PayPal fees you can incur, because these can add up very quickly.


PlasticJungle.com may be the easiest way to turn a gift card into cash. The site will buy gift cards for several hundred retailers, provided the card has at least $25 of value. While you will have to accept less than full value for the card, the site does pay for shipping and absorbs all costs related to selling your card. You can choose payment via PayPal, cashiers’ check, or Amazon.com gift card.

It is also worth noting that if you want to purchase a gift card, PlasticJungle.com resells the cards it buys at a discount to their full value.

Use it

If you can’t seem to find a way to get rid of your card, and the retailer has a store close to you, you can always just go buy something from the store to use the gift card. You may have to think outside of the box to find something to buy, but there is almost certainly something you can use at the retailer. Also, look to see if the retailer sells Visa or Mastercard branded gift cards or cards for another retailer you actually shop with. This can be a quick way to swap an unwanted gift card for something useful.

It isn’t easy, but it is possible to get rid of unwanted gift cards.