Smart Strategies to Convert Gift Card to Cash This Holiday Season

iEditorial Note: These blog posts represent the opinion of DoNotPay’s Writers, but each person’s situation and circumstances vary greatly. As a result, you should make sure to do your own independent research. Because everyone is unique, our self-help tools are never guaranteed to help with any specific situation. DoNotPay is not a law firm and is not licensed to practice law. DoNotPay provides a platform for legal information and self-help.

Smart Strategies to Convert Gift Card to Cash This Holiday Season

We all love receiving gift cards as presents. More importantly, we all love shopping till we drop using somebody else’s money!

More often than not, though, the item we buy doesn’t come to the full amount loaded on the card. A $95.99 item paid for with a $100 gift card leaves $4.01 on the card—too little to buy anything without topping up out of our own pocket.

If you have a collection of used cards with negligible amounts left on them, DoNotPay is here to help you convert your gift cards to cash!

How Do Gift Cards Work?

Gift cards are offered by vendors and third-party merchants to encourage you to visit a particular store or buy a certain product.

Some of the most popular gift cards come from brands like:

iTunesStarbucksWalmartVictoria’s Secret
WendysTGI FridaysBloomingdalesPetsmart
SearsIkeaDairy QueenOld Navy
Taco BellCostcoSubwayPublix
Dunkin DonutsPapa JohnsBanana RepublicAutozone
Office DepotStaplesForever 21Roblox

You can get cards in almost any denomination, and most have no expiry date. They are redeemable against products from the named company—usually, both in-store and online. Most gift cards can also be used alone or in combination with other forms of payment.

The two main types of gift cards are:

  1. Reloadable gift cards
  2. Single-use gift cards

Reloadable Gift Cards

These cards work like debit cards. You can recharge them in-store or online, and you need to keep a careful eye on them to avoid loss or depletion of funds.

Single-Use Gift Cards

Single-use gift cards can be either physical (plastic) cards or electronic vouchers. They are pre-loaded with a fixed value. Once the money on a single-use card is spent, you can dispose of it.

If your reloadable gift card is running low on funds, you can reload it. If you have a small remaining balance on your single-use card, you can still get the maximum value out of it without having to spend anything with the card’s vendor.

This is where DoNotPay can help—and we may even be able to show you how to get free gift cards!

First Check Your Balance

Before you throw any of your single-use gift cards away, make sure to check the remaining balance.

With almost every card, there will be multiple ways to do this:

  • Online on the vendor’s website
  • By phone using the number provided by the vendor
  • In store at one of the vendor’s outlets

Any remaining balance is good news. If it is a considerable sum, you can decide whether you want to use it to spoil yourself with something from the vendor.

If it’s a smaller amount, $5 or less, you may want to convert it to cash.

How Do You Convert a Gift Card to Cash?

There are several ways to convert your single-use gift card to cash—here’s what you can try:

Conversion MethodExplanation
Card exchangeThis is not strictly a cash exchange, but you can use an exchange service to swap your gift card for the one you want
Card merchantSeveral websites buy and sell gift cards. Depending on the popularity and residual value of your card, they will offer to buy it from you for a cash amount
KioskMany grocery and department stores have vending machines that offer cash in exchange for gift cards

While these methods are options, all of them have the same drawback—you will not get the full value remaining on your card. Typically, you will be offered a maximum of 85–90% of the true balance on your gift card.

Your next option is to get a cash reimbursement directly from the vendor.

How To Get Cash Back From a Gift Card Vendor

Many gift card vendors tell you that they will not exchange your gift card for cash except where required by law.

This refers to legislation in 11 states and Puerto Rico that forces vendors to give you cash for the value remaining on your gift card. The amount they have to reimburse is limited to:

  • $5 in most states
  • $10 in California
  • $3 in Connecticut
  • $1 in Rhode Island and Vermont

This is great news if you live in one of those states, but you will still have to:

  1. Go to the store, outlet, or restaurant where the card was issued
  2. Explain the law to the cashier or staff member

DoNotPay has the answer. We can help you !

Convert Your Gift Card to Cash With DoNotPay

DoNotPay always finds a way to make complicated processes simple!

All you have to do to get cash for the remaining balance on your gift card is follow these steps:

  1. in your web browser
  2. Click on our Cash Back on Gift Cards product
  3. Fill in your card details, such as vendor, date of purchase, and the remaining balance

We will send your claim to the nearest outlet for them to process. It doesn’t matter if you don’t live in a state with a cash back policy—we will make sure your request is sent to an outlet where your cash back is required by law. You should get your money within 14 days.

Shortcuts and Solutions at Your Fingertips

DoNotPay provides both the easy way out and the easy way in. Use our app to get rid of spam emails, text spam, unwanted services, and unpaid parking tickets. We can also assist you in signing up for services without revealing your real number and getting free trials using our virtual credit card.

Our app is all about saving you time and money. Forget about the obsolete fax machine and post office—you can use DoNotPay to send faxes, mail letters, and connect with your incarcerated loved one.

DoNotPay Goes Above and Beyond To Help

We understand how bureaucratic hurdles get too much to handle. This is why so many of our products deal with these types of issues. From getting a document notarized, filing a warranty claim, and skipping the phone line when calling customer service to requesting a refund, booking a DMV appointment, and drawing up documents—there’s not much we can’t do for you.

Dealing with the never-ending paperwork is a thing of the past for DoNotPay users! Our app makes it easy to:

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