Give the Gift of Experience: 6 Places to Find Discount Gift Cards

Gift cards are increasingly popular as gifts because they offer the recipient the chance to choose something that he or she really wants. If you put careful thought into the gift card you purchase, it’s possible to make it personal. A gift card to the recipient’s favorite restaurant or store, or a gift card to the spa or for a unique experience, like skydiving or a helicopter tour, can be a good way to give the gift of experience. These types of gifts are especially appreciated by those who “have everything.”

The difficulty with gift cards is the fact that you are stuck paying “full price.” After all, you just get the gift card in the amount that you are willing to pay, right? Luckily, this isn’t the case. Just as you can get a great deal on the latest gadget, it’s possible to get a discount on a gift card. Here are 5 places to find discount gift cards:

1. Gift Card Granny

This web site aggregates discount gift cards from around the Internet. Gift Card Granny offers you the ability to find gift cards for less than their face values. In some cases, you buy unwanted gift cards from past recipients. In these cases, you might end up buying a gift card with an odd balance, such as 24.13. If you plan to give the card as a gift, you are better off purchasing a gift card that comes straight from the source, or that has the full balance still available. You can save up to 65 percent when you buy through this site.

Gift Card Granny features a tool that allows you to verify a card balance before you buy.

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2. Plastic Jungle

If you have unused gift cards in your possession, you can exchange them for gift cards with other retailers. Plastic Jungle will let you turn your unused gift cards into a CVS Pharmacy gift card, or into MileagePlus points. You can use this site to provide gifts for the frequent traveler in your life.

Or, if you have received gift cards you don’t plan to use, you can turn them into Best Buy rewards points. It’s possible to turn your own unused gift cards into Best Buy points, and then use those to get a gift certificate you can give to someone else. A little planning and creativity can go a long way.

3. City Deals

Use City Deals to get a little more personal with your discount gift card giving efforts. Enter the city that the recipient lives in, and then choose from restaurants, spas, entertainment and more. It’s also possible to get discounts for products. Buy a discount certificate for something you want to give, then redeem it and give the gift, logging an effective savings. This can make for a truly personal gift, even when the recipient lives far from you. You can even offer a City Deals certificate so that the recipient can find his or her own discounted experience.

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4. Cardpool

Use Cardpool to help you find the right discount gift card for you. Get cards for up to 35 percent of their balances when you use this site. You can find cards that come in physical format or in electronic format. Some gift cards are even available in mobile format. If you choose a physical card, you receive free shipping, so you don’t have to worry about paying that extra cost. You can also create a wishlist, and sell unwanted gift cards. You can even exchange your old unwanted cards for a different card. This can be a way to avoid spending much cash at all as you purchase a gift card.

5. GiftCards.com

Use this web site to keep track of what’s available in terms of discounted gift cards with alerts. On top of that, you can choose from a variety of discounted gift cards, ranging from accessories to clothing to entertainment to restaurants to travel. As with many other sites, GiftCards.com features a limited number of some gift cards, so you have to buy when you have the chance if you notice that the card is in short supply.

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6. Daily Deal Sites

Finally, it’s possible to find discounted gift cards from sites like Living Social, Moolala, and Groupon as well. These daily deal sites don’t always offer these kinds of discounts, but every now and then you can get lucky. Pay attention, and you could get a $20 Amazon gift card for $10, or find some other great deal on gift cards. It’s even possible to get discounted certificates to each of these daily deal sites and then give them to recipients who would love the opportunity to see how far they can stretch their dollars.

What do you think? Do you have a favorite source for discounted gift cards?

Published or Updated: December 12, 2013

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