INDIANAPOLIS — Gifts cards are a popular holiday gift, and there are ways to boost their value beyond what you pay.
With Christmas a little over a week away, you may be worried about packages arriving on time. Gift cards may be the way to go. You can stretch their value with a discount or bonus.
One way to get a discount is to check out wholesale clubs.
Depending on the club location, you can often get a $100 card for $80 to places like Fat Dan's, Cake Bake and Shapiro's Deli.
Next, look at your credit card benefits. For example, Discover will let you redeem your cash back as gift cards instead, adding anywhere from a 5% to 20% bonus amount. The gift cards can be emailed.
Restaurants are also running promotions. Cunningham Restaurant Group, who owns spots including Livery, Bru Burger, and Mesh, are offering a $10 bonus for every $50 spent.
Applebee's and Bonefish Grill are doing the same deal.
Bonus cards usually need to be used within a few months.
Before you buy the gift card, check with someone who is close with the person to make sure they'll use it. Last year, Bankrate.com said consumers are sitting on billions of dollars in unused gift cards.