(Mandy Jansen)

Subway Franchisee Sentenced For Hacking Registers, Stealing $40K In Gift Cards

A former Subway franchise owner was sentenced to 18 months in jail for his part in remotely hacking the restaurants’ computer systems in order to obtain more than $40,000 in gift cards. [More]

(Patrick Carlson)

Why You Should Rethink Buying Gift Cards This Year

Giving people gift cards has many advantages: you can take a loved one out to dinner from hundreds or thousands of miles away, or you can buy someone new clothes or shoes without guessing at their size. However, gift cards and prepaid debit cards aren’t always the one-size-fits-all gift option that they seem to be, since they can have some serious drawbacks. [More]

(frankieleon)

GM Using $25 Gift Cards As Incentive For Consumers To Get Their Recalled Vehicles Fixed

General Motors’ social media campaign to coax consumers to fix their recalled vehicles doesn’t appear to be getting the job done. With just about half of the 2.4 million vehicles recalled for an ignition switch defect having been fixed, the car manufacturer has turned to dangling money in front of consumers to get the potentially dangerous cars off the road. [More]

(Patrick Carlson)

Most People Don’t Really Want Gift Cards This Holiday Season

Every year, the super-consultants at Deloitte LLP ask people whether they’re interested in receiving and giving any gift cards this holiday season. We used to love the concept: Back in 2007, 69% of people said that they were interested in receiving the plastic cash replacers. This year, that number is down to 37%. [More]

Man Hacks Gift Card Database: Was It For Research, Or To Score Free Stuff?

Man Hacks Gift Card Database: Was It For Research, Or To Score Free Stuff?

Running out of funds on your store gift card is a total bummer. While most of us would just pay with our own cash or buy another gift card. For a Virginia man, there was another option: circumvent a computer database
[More]

Trade In Your Unwanted Gift Cards To GameStop For A – You Guessed Right – GameStop Gift Card

Trade In Your Unwanted Gift Cards To GameStop For A – You Guessed Right – GameStop Gift Card

Apparently, there are no shortage of unique business ideas over at GameStop. Earlier this year we reported that the retailer was operating as a sort-of bank, and now customers can trade-in their unwanted gift cards for one they actually want – you know, one to GameStop. [More]

(The Joy Of The Mundane)

Coinstar Wants To Cash In Your Gift Cards

Do you have any gift cards sitting around that you would rather turn into cash/ now that I’ve mentioned it, do you want those gift cards gone right now? Coinstar will be happy to make that happen for you at any of their more than 400 instant-gratification Coinstar Exchange kiosks. [More]

(Jenn)

People Loaded $4 Billion On Starbucks Gift Cards Last Year

Starbucks announced its quarterly earnings information yesterday: revenues are up, and the company earned a profit of $540.7 million. One piece of information in the report caught our eye, though: $1.3 billion was loaded on Starbucks Cards in the last quarter of the year, with $4 billion in Star Bucks loaded on cards during the past year. [More]

The Gift Card I Bought At Walmart Is Blank. What Should I Do?

The Gift Card I Bought At Walmart Is Blank. What Should I Do?

If you buy a prepaid debit card at Walmart as a gift and only receive a blank Starbucks card in return, who is responsible for getting you your money back? One family in California learned a very inconvenient lesson: customers who buy empty gift cards must go to the company that issued the gift card, not Walmart. [More]

Target Will Honor Gift Cards It Failed To Activate During Holiday Season

Target Will Honor Gift Cards It Failed To Activate During Holiday Season

Hot on the heels of a massive data breach that compromised credit and debit card information for some 40 million U.S. customers, Target has confirmed reports that some gift cards sold during the recent holiday shopping season were not activated properly by the retailer. [More]

Introducing The Most Worthless Coupon Ever

Introducing The Most Worthless Coupon Ever

Coupons and promotions are great things to get customers into a store and to get our attention, but sometimes you have to stop and say, “Wait a minute.” Here are two cases of inauspicious promotions that readers have spotted lately: a stack of worthless coupons, and a gift card advertised at its face value. [More]

Were These Gift Cards Stolen, Or Gobbled By The Mail-Sorting Machine?

Were These Gift Cards Stolen, Or Gobbled By The Mail-Sorting Machine?

We were very sad to read about a family in St. Louis who opened up a Christmas card from Grandma only to find $350 in Walmart gift cards missing. The victim took his story to the local news, assuming that the cards had been stolen at some point after mailing. That’s certainly possible, since human beings are terrible. There’s another possibility, though. [More]

(The Joy Of The Mundane)

The $1 Billion Tragedy: Unredeemed Gift Cards In America

Gift cards can be a truly great gift…to the retail sector. While only 1% of gift cards go unredeemed, with about $116 billion in gift card sales annually, that’s more than $1 billion that we’re just leaving in a drawer until retailers take it back. [More]

Split Your Amazon Transaction And Use Up That Old Visa Gift Card

Split Your Amazon Transaction And Use Up That Old Visa Gift Card

Do you have an old prepaid debit card or major credit card-branded gift card sitting around? Maybe it’s sitting around because it has a balance on it that’s too small to be very useful, yet not such a small amount that you’re willing to throw it away. Here’s a novel solution: use it to split a transaction on Amazon. [More]

(meg)

Sears Settles With New York Over Deceptive Refunds

For more than two years, Sears offered “Come Back Cash” promotions that rewarded customers with Sears gift cards for purchases over certain qualifying thresholds. But if a customer returned an item, they would have the proportionate value of that gift card deducted from the refund, even if the total value of the purchase was still above the threshold for meriting a gift card. [More]

(MortonFox)

Judge Says Customers Won’t See One Red Cent Of Unredeemed Borders Gift Cards

Ineffective rectangular frisbees? Tiny coasters? Better start thinking of some ideas for any of those unredeemed Borders gift cards you may still have lying around: A judge ruled this week that customers won’t see a nickel of a total of $210.5 million in remaining balances on gift cards they failed to use before Borders bit the big one and went off to that great mall in the sky. [More]

(Dan Zen)

FTC Goes After Spammers Responsible For 180 Million “Free Gift Card” Text Messages

Through eight lawsuits filed in four different U.S. District Courts, the Federal Trade Commission has put the regulatory smackdown on 29 alleged text spammers believed to have blasted out more than 180 million unwanted text messages to consumers. [More]

(dno1967b)

Kohl’s Staff Is Helpless When Gift Card System Goes Down

One of the most important factors in determining whether a retailer provides quality customer service is how it handles unexpected problems. Unfortunately for one Consumerist reader, no one at Kohl’s seemed willing to do any creative thinking when the store’s gift card system went down. [More]