Exchanging or giving gifts during the festive season or on an important occasion such as weddings, birthdays and at childbirth has become an important fact of our society. Yet, many people have a tough time choosing the right gifts to buy for their loved ones. In recent times, however, prepaid gift cards have gained immense popularity all around the world as a preferred gifting option due to the many benefits they provide. Today, many banks and retail outlets have joined the bandwagon by issuing a variety of this smart gifting solution.
What is a gift card?
Essentially it is a plastic card that works much the same way as prepaid cards. It has a magnetic strip that looks very similar to debit or credit card. It is, however, different from the two since the user does not accumulate debt when using and is not linked to any bank account.
Gift cards (more information about Google Play store or iTunes gift cards) can be purchased from banks and retail intuitions by paying a cash amount equal to the card’s face value. Once gifted to anyone, the card can be used in numerous stores that accept the specific card type. The value of the purchase is deducted from the card balance when a recipient of the gift card uses it. This means that gift cards can be used multiple times at different times till the value gets used up or the validity period expires. The validity period for most cards is usually up to one year. Gift cards can be replaced if lost r was stolen.
There are two types of gift cards: closed loop cards and open loop cards
Closed loop cards are usually issued by individual brands for use in making purchases from their retails cans or stores only. On the other hand, open loop card are offered by banks and other financial institutions in collaboration with carding platforms such as Visa and MasterCard. They can be used to make a purchase in all retail outlets that accept gift cards.
Why gift cards make the ideal gift
Now, gift cards have all but solved the age-old problem of thoughtless gift-giving. Instead, they are quickly becoming a huge factor of the economy as people and their recipients start to appreciate the benefits they have to provide. Some of the reason that makes gift cards the perfect gift are:
Benefit #1- they are less likely to be thrown away
When giving a gift, you want to make sure that it is something the recipient will appreciate and after allgift cards go towards exact desired purchases, they are far less likely to go to waste. The recipient can use the card to make an exact purchase or top it up with hard cash or credit card balance to purchase something they truly desire.
Benefit #2 – they are great for online shopping
Online shopping is increasingly becoming popular as people turn to online stores to purchase virtually everything – from music to clothes to designer sunglasses. Gift cards don’t go against this trend, they actually embrace it.
Benefit #3 – you are less likely to overspend
It is easy to lose track of your expenditure when shopping for gifts, especially if you’re buying for multiple people. The benefit of buying gift cards is that you can purchase them in set denominations. This eliminates the temptation to overspend and you are more likely to purchase one for everyone on your list without running the risk of coming up short at the very end.
Benefit # 4 – They are themed for different seasons and occasions
There are gift cards specifically designed to represent those moments occasions. You simply need to select the occasion you are purchasing the gift for and then choose the amount you wish to give. Each special occasion gift card has an excellent range of fun experience; some are perfect for celebrating birthdays, weddings, anniversaries and achievements.
Benefit #5 – they help support local businesses
Worried that your local record store or bookshop might not be attracting enough clientele? Well, gift cards are one of the best ways to create a relationships these stores with new customers. By visiting a local store and purchasing a gift card, it both benefits the store and offers your recipient the flexibility to purchase something they truly value.
Benefit #6- they have trophy value
Purchases made using gift cards are more memorable and create a lasting reminder of friendship. The recipients are likely to talk about the card before going shopping and may even use it to purchase something for other people he/she cares for.