My New Favorite Money-Saving Strategy That You Aren’t Using

I just love finding new ways to save money.  It is kind of an addiction really. 😉  And after spending years being a guinea pig with a lot of money-saving tips I wrote How To Save Money: A 21-Day Challenge to Save $500/month.

My newest money-saving strategy that you probably aren't using...I just love finding new ways to save money. It is kind of an addiction really. ;) And after spending years being a guinea pig with a lot of money-saving tips I wrote How To Save Money: A 21-Day Challenge to Save $500/month....

But it seems like since I released the book, I keep finding more and more great tips that I want to add to it.  I guess I will have to get going on the next edition.  But anyway, today I just want to share a very simple strategy that is saving me money each month:

Buying Used Gift Cards

Did you know that you can buy used gift cards at a discount – sometimes as much as 15% off the face value of the card?  So this essentially means that you can pay $85 for a $100 gift card in some cases.

But the key to actually saving money here is to buy gift cards for stores and products that we will be buying anyway.

For example, my family will be spending money every single month buying groceries, household items, and fuel for our cars.

If we are going to be spending $100 at Target or Walmart each month, why not buy a $100 gift card at a discount?

Discounted Rates available

These are some of the current rates at GiftCardRescue.com

  • Lowes  9.5% off
  • Whole Foods  3.5% off
  • Starbucks  12% off
  • Target  4% off
  • Walmart  3.5% off
  • Publix  6% off
  • Kohls  9% off

As you can see the discount rates vary widely, but if you are going to spend money at a store, why not get a discount?

Questions I had about buying used gift cards

There are other sites out there that sell discounted gift cards (Cardcash.com, Cardpool.com, and others) and I can’t speak for all of them, but these answers apply to GiftCardRescue.

Are there any fees?

Nope.

What if the gift card doesn’t have the correct amount loaded on it?

They verify the amount on the card before shipping it out, but if it ever did happen, they have a 60-day purchase guarantee that it is the correct dollar amount.

Do I have to pay for shipping?

Nope

 

Do they expire?

Nope

Do I have to pay sales tax when buying the gift card?

Nope

How long will they take to arrive?

They ship them via USPS, so it is normally about 3-5 business days

Can I sell them my unwanted gift cards?

Yes, they purchase gift cards up to 92% of the face value.  So if you have some collecting dust in a drawer, that is a good way to get some cash out of them.

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12 Comments
  1. melissa

    We did this last year when we were purchasing a large shed from Lowes. We saved $1500.00 dollars doing it this we. We also love the electronic, and mobile gift cards. Going to the movies is actually affordable in our budget this way! 🙂 If you have never tried it, please do! Buying gifts for people at a discount is incredible! They come in the mail quickly, our fav’s are cardpool.com and abcgiftcards.com– and they have a bulk feature that gives you an additional discount! Christmas in February- I think so!

    • Bob

      Right on Melissa, it does work particularly well when doing a home improvement project when you can get about 10% off at Lowes or Home Depot!

  2. Jason B

    This is a good idea. I will be trying this soon.

  3. Abigail

    Dont forget that some gift card sites are also on Mr. Rebates, Ebates etc. I know you can get 1% back at Raise on Extrabux and Mr Rebates. I know Cardpool is on one of them, too. Every little bit helps.

    • Bob

      Great tip Abigail!

  4. Beatrice

    Interesting way to save money. Thank you for the tip. I just wanted to share a thought. My mum’s purse was stolen from her hand bag and in less than an hour the thieves had charged over $21,000 in gift cards. Working with the police, she learned that thieves had stolen many women’s purses from their handbags over the past few months a at the two local Whole Foods she shops at (both in affluent areas). This way of shopping sheds some light on why they may have bought gift cards! Though this helps consumer’s, it might be an incentive for thieves to make money too.

    • Lisha

      wow, that’s crazy, Beatrice. Couldn’t they figure out which giftcard numbers were associated with the stolen credit card, and then just deactivate them? I would think that would be pretty easy for the authorities to make happen.

    • Bob

      Wow Beatrice – that is pretty scary! I do wonder how they handle issues like that…

  5. Lisha

    Oh yeah, I did this a few times a few years ago. We were really struggling back then, so I was trying to find any way possible to save as much as possible, and it was awesome to basically go shopping where I normally would at a discount. You’re basically getting a sales price for everything you buy with that giftcard. But I completely forgot about this! Gonna go get some. Thanks for the reminder, Bob! 🙂

    ~Lisha

  6. Wendy Dresser

    That sounds great. I know every year around Christmas our local stores often have iTunes gift cards at a discount and my husband searches them out. Generally a 4 pack of $15 cards for $50, etc.
    My question is do you know of any Canadian sites that sell discount cards? Even though we have many of the same stores, gift cards are specific to the country they were sold in.

    • Bob

      You know wendy, I haven’t found any yet. But if you do, please share them in the comments for the other Canadian readers!

  7. Michelle

    Good idea but I suppose this is only available in US and Canada. Is this available in Singapore as well?