Saving You Money
conditions to gift cards, but a new survey shows you still need to be
aware of what you're buying. In the lead-up to the holiday shopping season, Bankrate looked at 63
gift cards, 8 issued by banks and credit card companies, and 55 from
retailers and restaurants.
General use gift cards were far more likely to have fees attached.
Purchase fees ranged from $2.95 to $6.95. Inactivity fees could eat up $3 dollars per month after the first year. The trade off: more freedom to shop where you want.
Janna Herron a credit card analyst with Bankrate.com says, "The biggest advantage of one of the general purpose gift cards is
the flexibility it gives to the person you give the gift card to. Store
branded gift cards you have to use at the chain or the brand so that
limits it, but there are fewer fees that come with those cards."
Two-thirds of issuers said they would replace lost or stolen cards,
though some require that you register the card or have a receipt.
Herron says, "Consumers should look on the back of their gift card to find out what they really need to do to protect themselves."
95 percent of the cards surveyed did not have an expiration date.
Tuesday, November 13 2012, 10:42 PM CST
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