Gift cards make great Christmas gifts for picky shoppers, but many of us don’t like giving them because they seem like such a boring gift to give. So many companies have come up with creative ways to make their gift cards more appealing to consumers.
Target has quite a few innovative gift cards, the most unique being a mini digital camera that you have to put at least $50.00 on. The camera has 8 megabytes of memory and comes with everything you need to take digital pictures, including a coupon for 40 free prints. Target also has a gift card with a picture of a house decorated in Christmas lights that actually lights up to a holiday tune (following the latest trend in Christmas decorating), a holiday jukebox card that plays three seasonal songs, one that doubles as a hand-held maze (where you navigate a silver ball through it), a flip puzzle, and a container of M&Ms. So if you’re looking to impress with your gift card giving, Target is a good place to start. You can find all of these unique and fun gift cards on their website here. (You can also check out videos of how all of the cards work.)
The MP3 player gift card from Best Buy will also probably be very popular this year. It functions as a speaker to play music from MP3 players or iPods, and you only have to put $25.00 on the card. You can find this creative option here. Best Buy is also “going green” to attract environment savvy customers by advertising that they will recycle gift cards that are redeemed at their store.
But if all of this seems like a bit much to you, Macy’s is offering gift cards that can be personalized with photos, and American Express and Starbucks offer gift cards that can be personalized with messages. This trend is really starting to grow, so be sure to check any place you might be purchasing gift cards from for personalization options.
And for those who are simply looking for good deals, any time you eat out, be sure to ask if the restaurant you are dining at has any special deals on gift cards. Applebee’s, for example, will often give you a free $5.00 gift card if you buy a $25.00 gift card. Deals like these are a great way to save money, especially if you are buying for a lot of people from the same place.
Even if you are just getting someone a gift card that doesn’t have flashing lights, plays music, or is personalized, you can always personalize it yourself. Attach it to a stuffed animal or package of Christmas candy or make a mini-gift basket with small bottles of lotion to put it in, for example. It’ll cost you a little bit more, but small personal touches will make it a more thoughtful, special gift.
With the way the economy is, it’s also important to do a little online research before you buy gift cards to make sure that the store you’re buying them from isn’t going out of business anytime soon.
If you’re not sure what to get someone this year, will all of these new gift card options, you won’t have to feel as bad about getting them a gift card, and they won’t have to stand in line forever waiting to return an unwanted gift.