Websites turn gift cards to cash

High-demand cards net more money

Got a gift card that doesn't exactly fit you style? Several websites let you turn that plastic into cold hard cash.

Plastic was in style this year. Shoppers bought more than $110 billion in gift cards. They are convenient to give, and recipients get to choose exactly what they want.

"All my family is in California, so it's easy to get them, put them all in one envelope and call it a day," said Teresa Lee.

She not only love to give them. She loves to receive, too.

"Oh, I use mine almost immediately," she said.

But if you get one that isn't the best fit, several websites like www.plasticjungle.com, www.giftcardrescue and www.cardpool.com will buy what you don't want and sell them to someone who does.

One aggregate site, www.giftcardgranny.com is virtually a one-stop shop of websites looking to take that card off your hands.

Most websites offer between 70 and 90 percent of your card's value.

Giftcardrescue.com offered $17.50 cash for a $25  Barnes & Noble gift card or $18.38 in credit on Amazon.com. Giftcards.com offered $18.25 in cash, and Cardpool.com did better at $19.50.

Higher demand cards are worth more. For example, while a $100 Best Buy card would be purchased for $88, a Godiva card would yield $60.

The websites also sell cards at discounts. You can buy a $91 dollar JC Penney card for about $68. Or if you're wanting something special in a little blue box, you can buy a $1,000 Tiffany's gift card for a mere $900.

If you buy a gift card, be sure the website guarantees it.


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