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"Gift cards are expected to be among this season's most popular presents, generating about $18.48 billion in sales during the holidays this year . . ." — New York Times — 12/17/05
If this prophesy is true, there's a good chance one or more gift cards will land in your stocking!
Some cards, you'll welcome —
restaurant gift card; Simon gift card; WalMart gift card; gas gift card; Old Navy gift card; Disney gift card; Ipod gift card; Starbucks gift card; golf gift card . . . you get the picture!
Some cards — well, you'll wish you had money in hand, rather than a gift card.
(Note: The time is especially ripe for anyone interested in deal-making after the holidays. For the first couple of weeks in January, the market is jam-packed with unwanted holiday cards. You can buy (or swap) discounted gift cards at a savings — for yourself or for a gift.)
Gift card-specific websites:
Cardavenue — buy, sell and trade pre-owned gift cards and gift certificates — auctions, too!
Gurantees the purchase or trading price matches its value description up to $100 per transaction. (Dispute-resolution functionality)
SwapAGift — buy, sell, and swap merchant gift cards.
Top 20 merchants (12/22/05) include:
Macy's; Chili's; Banana Republic; Loews Cineplex; Home Depot; Avis Rental Card; Tiffanys (Last time we checked: offers to trade for Babies R Us — for Home Depot — for Exxon/Mobil)
Other secondary gift card sites:
Hot cards: Applebee's; Barnes & Noble; Best Buy . . .
CertificateSwap — Search their directory of merchants and buy a gift certificate at a discount. Sell a gift certificate — list it for free and pay 7.5 percent processing charge on the sale price.
NEW: Air Miles (yet to catch on)
GiftCardsAgain — Search your favorite companies — choose the card values. Buy gift cards or merchandise credits at less than face value.Always FREE shipping!
New listings: Bloomingdale's, Fuddruckers, Hot Topic . . .
Craigslist — A forum for buyers and sellers
to make offers.
Participate in an auction or exchange for a low ticket gift card.
Use a credit card or a service like PayPal; expect the card within 10 days.
Acquaint yourself with the world of "timeshare resale."
The Coupon Clippers — is a full service clipping service that provides manufacturer's coupons and rebate forms for a small handling fee.
According to The Coupon Clippers' website:
"If you order soon enough, we can have this week's coupons in your mail box before week's end, so you can use them at sales this week, without having to do any of the clipping yourself!"
National Geographic Traveler — August 2003 dubbed it "The Pass with Class" and added it to their A* List (*A is for affordable).
Now available in New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago, Seattle, Hollywood, San Francisco, Southern California and Toronto (includes Art Gallery of Ontario, Casa Loma, CN Tower, Ontario Science Centre, Royal Ontario Museum, and Toronto Zoo).
CityPass is a ticket booklet containing an actual admission ticket to the top attractions in each city.
With CityPass, you pay one substantially reduced price and avoid main entrance ticket lines at most attractions. (No such luck in Southern California — no surprise!)
The number of attractions offered depends on the city's collection, their proximity to one another, and public transportation.
*Changes and additions valid April 1, 2005 - March 31, 2006:
San Francisco — 5 Famous San Francisco Attractions plus 7-days unlimited transportation on all Cable Cars and MUNI Public Transportation: Asian Art Museum, Exploratorium, Blue & Gold Fleet Bay Cruise, SF Museum of Modern Art, and your choice between California Academy of Sciences & Steinhart Aquarium OR Legion of Honor.
Philadelphia — 6 Famous Philadelphia Attractions: The Franklin Institute Science Museum including Fels Planetarium, Independence Seaport Museum, The Academy of Natural Sciences, Philadelphia Zoo, Trolley Tour provided by Philadelphia Trolley Works & The National Constitution Center.
Hollywood Walk of Fame — 4 Famous Hollywood Walk of Fame Attractions: The Hollywood Entertainment Museum, Kodak Theatre, Starline Movie Stars' Homes Tour, and your choice of either The Hollywood Museum in the historic Max Factor Building OR Red Line Behind-the-Scenes Tour.
New York — 6 Famous NY Attractions: Empire State Building Observatory, Newly renovated Museum of Modern Art, Guggenheim Museum, American Museum of Natural History including the Rose Center for Earth & Space and Hayden Planetarium, Intrepid Sea Air Space Museum & Circle Line 2-hour Harbor Cruise.
Chicago — 6 Famous Chicago Attractions: Shedd Aquarium including Oceanarium, Wild Reef, and Special Exhibit, Museum of Science and Industry including Omnimax, The Art Institute of Chicago, The Field Museum including Underground Adventure, The Adler Planetarium & Astronomy Museum including one SkyTheater show & The Hancock Observatory including a SkyTour.
Seattle — 6 Famous Seattle Attractions: Space Needle, Seattle Aquarium, Argosy Cruises 1 Hour Harbor Tour, The Museum of Flight, Woodland Park Zoo & Pacific Science Center including one IMAX.
For more details, click: here
Hobbytron.com — offers a wealth of deals — coupons, FREE shipping offers and liquidation items — for stuff you want and need.
To pick up tips from Carol Ann Johnson, click single shopper
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