Can I Return Gift Cards?

Closeup shot of two people holding a red gift card on a white Free Photo



Gift cards are great because they allow the recipient to spend money on whatever they want. But sometimes people just don’t know what to buy, or maybe you got an unwanted gift card. 

If this happens, then there is no need to panic. Most retailers now allow you to return your gift card, though many do not give the cash value back. 

This guide will discuss how long you have to return a gift card and some best practices for getting your cash back with minimal hassle.

How do gift cards work?

People are constantly looking for new ways to give gifts, and gift cards have quickly become one of the most popular options. Gift cards are essentially prepaid credit for a specific store that you can give to someone. 

They come in various designs and cost varying amounts of money depending on the retailer. People can use this cash in the same way they would their bank account, with the exception that it is only valid at the store or location where they received the card.

Returning the gift card for cash

The answer to this question is a little bit complicated. Gift cards, in general, cannot be redeemed for cash. However, depending on the retailer and state laws, there are exceptions to this rule. Some states, for example, allow you to return a gift card if you do so within a specific time frame after purchase, which is usually around 30 days.

Furthermore, some retailers, such as Walmart, allow you to return gift cards if they have not been used. Even if the retailer provides cash returns, there is usually a limit to how much money you can get back. As a result, it’s always a good idea to check with the individual store before attempting to return a gift card.

What should you do with unused gift cards?

If you have a gift card that you don’t want to use, there are a few options. You can sell the card on a site like GiftCardGranny. You could also use a site like Raise to trade it in for another card. These websites will exchange your unwanted gift card for cash or other cards. 

The best thing to do with unwanted gift cards is to sell them. There are numerous websites where you can exchange your old, unused gift cards for cash. For example, eBay and GiftDeals both allow people to buy and sell their used or new gift cards at a reduced price, allowing them to recoup their investment after the holiday season is over.

If you have gift cards for stores or restaurants that you no longer use, consider selling them to websites like these. It’s a great way to make some extra money while also freeing up some space in your wallet. 

Selling your gift cards can be a great way to make some extra money, and it’s much easier than trying to return them. Just make sure to read each website’s terms and conditions before selling your card.

Exchanging the gift card for another

If you don’t want to sell your gift card, you could also trade it in for another one. This can be a great option if there is a store or restaurant that you like but don’t have a gift card for. Several websites allow people to do this, and they usually offer a good deal on the trade-in.

Gift cards are great gifts because they allow the recipient to get exactly what they want and need, but occasionally people receive gift cards that they don’t like or can’t use. 

For example, you may have received a Dunkin Donuts gift card when your preferred store is Starbucks. Or maybe there’s a new restaurant in town, but you’d rather stick to your regular place.

When attempting to use an unwanted gift card, any of these options are perfectly acceptable, but each has advantages and disadvantages. If none of these options appeal to you, consider selling the card on a website or exchanging it for another store’s gift card at one of these sites. It’s a great way to make some extra money or use the gift card towards something you really want.

Can I return my gift card?

In general, no. A gift card cannot be returned for cash to the retailer who issued it. There are, however, a few exceptions.

You may be able to get your money back if you have a gift card from a store that has gone out of business or if the gift card has been damaged. For more information, you should contact the gift card’s issuer. 

The best way to avoid problems is to read the gift card’s terms and conditions. Look for any exceptions to returning your money, and make sure you understand what that entails.

Some stores may have a “return with receipt” policy, which allows you to exchange an item or receive store credit if you have proof of purchase (like a receipt). If they do not, be sure to inquire about their policy before purchasing. 

Some retailers do not allow returns at all, so if you are unsure whether an item is eligible for returns, always read the return policies or contact customer service for clarification.

If there’s no other option and you don’t want a store credit or a replacement item, you could give the gift card as a gift.

Can I receive a refund if I return an item purchased with a gift card?

Most stores would refund you if you bought something with a gift card. However, you may have a shorter time frame to return the item than if you paid with cash or a credit card. Some stores, for example, may only give you seven days to return an item, whereas others may give you up to a month.

Furthermore, some stores may only issue store credit rather than a cash refund if the item was purchased with a gift card rather than cash or another form of payment. When returning an item purchased with a gift card, it is best to consult your receipt and read any return policies printed on the back of the receipt.

First Data: Consumers Overspending Gift Cards |

Gift Card FAQs

What is the general return policy for items purchased with a gift card? 

If you have an item purchased using store credit, such as a gift card or certificate, many stores will only offer you store credit in exchange. Stores like Macy’s and Home Depot may also give you cash back if your purchase was made within specific timeframes.

When is the best time to use my gift card? 

If you are not sure when you want to use your gift card, consider waiting until there is a sale or promotion at the store where you plan on using it. Many retailers offer gift cards that can be used at any of their locations.

What should I do if I lose my gift card? 

If you have lost your gift card, or it has been stolen, you can contact the store where the card was purchased, and they may be able to help you track down the missing item. Additionally, some stores offer replacement cards for a fee. Be sure to contact the store for more information about your specific gift card.

How can I cancel a lost or stolen gift card?

If you have lost your gift card, or it has been stolen, and you would like to cancel the card, you can contact the store where the card was purchased. They may be able to help you track down the missing item or offer a replacement card for a fee. 

Additionally, some stores offer cancellation policies for gift cards that have been reported as lost or stolen. Be sure to contact the store for more information about your specific gift card.

Can I use my gift card at multiple stores? 

If you have a gift card that is accepted by multiple stores, you can use it at any of the retailer’s locations. However, be aware that not all gift cards are accepted at every store. It is best to check with the store before making a purchase.

How can I check the balance of my gift card? 

To find out how much money is left on your store credit or gift certificate, you will need to contact customer service for information about balances. Ensure that you have this information available before calling, as it will be required to inquire about account activity.

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