Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Be Cautious when Buying Gift Cards this Season!

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Gift Cards are some of the easiest gifts we can give as a Holiday gift - they don't send us over our budget and the recipient can choose any gift they want. Seems like a win-win for everyone, doesn't it?

Well, it could be a lose-lose this Holiday season if you aren't careful about which stores you buy your gift cards from. With the economy in a downward spiral, retail stores are closing by the droves. But what happens to your gift card if the store goes out of business? If there isn't another location you can visit, you're simply out anything you may have spent.

Here is just a partial list of stores that are slated to close some or all of their doors in the next few months:

Circuit City (filed Chapter 11)
Ann Taylor- 117 stores nationwide closing
Lane Bryant, Fashion Bug ,and Catherine's to close 150 stores nationwide
Eddie Bauer to close stores 27 stores and more after January
Cache will close all stores
Talbots closing down specialty stores
J. Jill closing all stores (owned by Talbots)
Pacific Sunwear (also owned by Talbots)
GAP closing 85 stores
Footlocker closing 140 stores more to close after January
Wickes Furniture closing down
Levitz closing down remaining stores
Bombay closing remaining stores
Zales closing down 82 stores and 105 after January
Whitehall closing all stores
Piercing Pagoda closing all stores
Disney closing 98 stores and will close more after January.
Home Depot closing 15 stores 1 in NJ ( New Brunswick )
Macys to close 9 stores after January
Linens and Things closing all stores
Movie Galley Closing all stores
Pep Boys Closing 33 stores
Sprint/Nextel closing 133 stores
JC Penney closing a number of stores after January
Ethan Allen closing down 12 stores.
Wilson Leather closing down all stores
Sharper Image closing down all stores
K B Toys closing 356 stores
Loews to close down some stores
Dillard's to close some stores

So this year as you scour the stores for "just the right gift", think twice if the "right gift" is a gift card. Instead, opt for a universal gift card such as an American Express or Visa (prepaid cards only good for the amount you choose)- these are available just about anywhere (grocery stores, convenience stores, you name it). These can be used at any store, however, unlike most store gift cards, these cards do expire and usually after six months they start incurring a fee per month on unused balances (usually, around $2 per month will be deducted form the cards balance until the card is either runs out of funds or it is spent).

Happy Shopping!

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Posted by Liz of Pink Lemonade

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1 comment:

Julie@Cool Mom Guide said...

I've heard about this, it's crazy!