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In defense of gift certificates

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We're broke, and DH does not enjoy gift shopping at all.  If you want to go shopping at a store, rather than find out what you would like, he will hand you money or a gift certificate to that store, and tell you to have at it.  He's not stingy, but he hates shopping for much of anything beyond his own esoteric stuff.  In addition, I am Very Difficult to book shop for, and that's nearly my ultimate gift.

So.  He uses American Express, which gives points, which can be redeemed for Barns & Noble gift certificates.  I just had a fantastic time shopping (it would have been even more fun if I liked their web site more, I think it's Not The Best :P), I spent $3 more than my certificates of Guilt Free Book Money, and I have 15 books coming in the mail!  This is going to be SUCH a blast.  ;D ;D ;D (hopping up and down with glee)  ;D ;D ;D

Some of them are coming from the next county over, a few more are instate, and some are from the other side of the country.  They will be trickling in for a few weeks.  THIS is SO MUCH FUN for me!

This is when gift certificates are good: when the shopping experience is an important part of the gift. I like them for teenagers who already have the ability to shop for themselves but not the money or for specialty shopping.

I love, love, LOVE gift cards!  I am the world's worst gift shopper, and generally I screw something up when I try to buy a particular item for someone else.  Mind you, I don't buy that many gifts at Christmas, anyway--just for the children, who are now all about the age where it's a big deal to get a gift card because it makes them feel "grown-up" to pick out stuff for themselves.  (Never quite understood why people have this compulsion to buy gifts for all and sundry at Christmas.  Then again, I used to work retail, and the stuff I saw there might just colour my opinion a tad... ::))

My 86 year old mother also loves gift cards. At this stage in her life, the last thing she needs is more random stuff, plus she's on a fixed income. Gift cards - even to the grocery store - allow her to treat herself to things that aren't in the everyday budget.

You wanna see an octogenarian get giddy - watch my Mom find something she wants on sale on Senior Discount Day and pay for it with a gift card.  ;)

I am also a fan. My fave is Amazon since I have a kindle, and use them to buy books i wouldn't normally buy, i.e. too pricy for me as i'm kind of cheap! last year i also got a vera bradley gc, and coupled with my birthday coupon, i was able to get a very nice bag, for less than half the cost. 


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