Gift cards can be a nice gift and are useful if you don’t know what to buy someone but if you’re not careful you could be giving someone a worthless gift. See our tips below to avoid being scammed when buying a gift card.
Why discounts aren’t always good
When you’re looking to buy gift cards online avoid any that have large discounts. These cards are often part of a scam and are sometimes bought with stolen credit cards, making them worthless when the store finds out that the purchase was charged back by the credit company. Most gift cards bought this way will be deactivated before they can be used.
If you buy from a reputable online reseller then check their protection guarantee. In a lot of cases these websites will offer a guarantee that if the gift cards don’t work you will get a full refund. This means that you will be able to either get your money back or get a new card if the one you bought does not work.
Buy from the retailer themselves
One of the best ways to avoid being scammed is to only buy the gift card from the retailer that it will be redeemed with. There is much less chance that the gift card will have already been used and you will know that the money you paid will be the value on the card
Check that the retailer isn’t about to go bust
Retail can be a tough market and some retailers don’t always make it through to the next year. Before you buy a gift card ensure that they will still be around when you want to use the voucher, as in most cases if the retailer goes bust then they won’t refund any of your money and the card will be worthless. If you already know that you won’t use the gift card after all you can sell it on EJ gift cards.
Pick a card from the back of the pile
Sometimes the cards on the display rack can be tampered with, a scammer could have stolen the card number and will lie in wait until the card is activated. In this case there’s no way to know which card has been read and the only way you’ll find out is when you go to buy something and find out that there’s no money left on the card. This scam is becoming more and more popular and retailers aren’t always aware of it. If you can only buy gift cards that are locked away or stored somewhere rather than left on a display rack for anyone to tamper with.
Inspect the card
Before you spend your hard-earned money on a gift card, check it out carefully. Read all of the terms and conditions to make sure there aren’t any extra costs involved when redeeming the card. Check that none of the stickers or scratch-off areas have been removed or tampered with, as this usually means someone has stolen that card numbers. If you’re not sure then pick a different card or buy it from somewhere else.