Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Gift Cards Are For Chumps

Gift cards are for chumps. I love that line. Seth Godin hits a home run with his thoughts on the holiday season. If you're like me, you still have some much needed shopping to do. You'll have great intentions but time will run short and you'll do the inevitable - purchase a gift card for someone.

I mean after all, then they can get whatever they want with it right? Wrong. Listen to these stats:
Last year, more than $8,000,000,000 was wasted on these cards. Not in the value spent, but in fees and breakage. When you give a card, if it doesn't get used, someone ends up keeping your money, and it's not the recipient. People spent more than eight billion dollars for nothing... buying a product that isn't as good as cash.

I know what you're thinking. You're just being thoughtful. It's a GIFT card. You can't give them the cash right? That would be "Christmas Taboo" - like there are rules somewhere. Who decided that cash wasn't a great gift? We get a gift card so it looks like we looked for a gift and we don't end up the chump. But guess what? Gift cards are for chumps!

So forget about it this year. It's a scam. It's a business driven model that has proven to be effective only for the companies, not the consumer. It's time for cash to be king. Hello Mr. Ben Franklin!

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