Getting more cash out of those Christmas gift cards

Every Christmas, thousands of Aussies give and receive gift cards for Christmas. A gift card is a fun and practical way to ensure your friends and family can choose the gift they’d most love.

However, each year, millions of dollars worth of cash value is lost as gift cards expire.

Millions in cash going to waste

  • Aussies spend a staggering $2.5 billion a year on gift cards. That’s a lot of quick, easy cash for retailers!
  • Unfortunately, a large amount of value goes to waste. Around $200 million of value in gift cards goes unredeemed in Australia each year.
  • Last year $60 million in unused gift cards went down the drain in New South Wales alone.
  • That’s a lot of our hard-earned cash being handed over to stores in return for gift cards that are not redeemed before they expire.

Cash controversy

  • If you’ve ever stumbled across a forgotten and expired gift card during a clean out of your kitchen drawer or wallet, you’ll know the feeling.
  • Although a gift card is almost the same as cold hard cash, for some reason we often don’t treat them as such.
  • Gift cards are very often received and then forgotten, meaning the cash that was used to buy them is wasted!

Would you accept on expiry date on your cash?

  • Shoppers deserve to get what they pay for. If someone has handed $50 of their cash over to purchase a gift card, the store should be reasonable about honouring that value.
  • You wouldn’t accept an expiry date being applied to a $50 note! Many argue a gift card should be treated just like cash.

Push to extend gift card expiry dates

  • Consumer groups and the government want to put the brakes on the amount of cash Aussies are losing in unredeemed gift cards.
  • Many retailers pocket the cash from gift card sales but impose short expiry date periods.
  • The New South Wales government are leading a push to introduce laws that will force retailers to set a minimum 3 year expiry date on gift cards.

Many retailers are already on board

  • Some brands have already begun to acknowledge this sentiment.
  • Gift cards from Apple and Bunnings already have no expiry date on them.
  • Many Aussies want our laws to follow those set in the United States, United Kingdom and Canada. These countries have set minimum 3 year expiry periods on gift cards.

Make sure your gift keeps on giving this Christmas

  • If you’re giving a gift card this Christmas, be sure to check the terms and conditions.
  • Make sure your recipient is aware of the expiry date, and encourage them to go shopping with it ASAP.
  • Don’t let your precious cash go to waste!

Need a quick and easy online cash loan?

  • Christmas can put a strain on your tight budget.
  • If you need access to quick, easy cash for your Christmas shopping or those end of year expenses, City Finance can help.
  • Apply online today, or give us a call on 1300 34 34 62 (1300 FINANCE).
  • You can also pop into your local branch for a chat with our friendly staff. We’re here to help!