Before you buy hundreds of dollars of stuff for Christmas / Hanukhah / Festivus, consider this. Buy gift cards to those stores at a significant discount (10-20% less is common).
Use your newly acquired discounted gift card(s) to make your purchase.
Doing this saved me $793.58 in 2015.
Also, if you give gift cards, pick some up here at a discount!
Here’s the deal. Sites sell discounted gift cards that are:
Physical (card mailed to you)
Electronic or eGift (online use only)
Mobile (show on your phone in store)
Voucher or Printable Electronic (Emailed. Print out to use in store or online)
Choose which you want when making your purchase. I prefer Voucher or Printable Electronic whenever available because I can use them in store or online.
But First… Do This Now
Get registered with these sites now. This will get your discounted gift cards delivered in minutes, sometimes instantly. Not being registered can delay delivery.
Gift Card Granny
Once you are registered with various sites, go here: GiftCardGranny.com. This is an excellent site which culls all the info from all the discount gift card websites, as well as eBay. You’ll be able to see where you can get the largest discount.
Buy the discounted gift cards that you want. Use them to make purchases. Easy.
Another Wrinkle: Buy Now, Get Discount Later
I decided to upgrade my turn-of-the-century living room. No, not that century. The one Prince sang about. I knew what I wanted at Crate & Barrel, but I needed more gift cards to cover my purchase. C&B said it would be okay if I made the purchase with my credit card. After I gathered all my discounted gift cards from Raise and Cardpool, Crate & Barrel said they would accept the gift cards and credit that amount back to my credit card.
If you are ready to pull the trigger on something with a big price tag, but don’t have discounted gift cards in hand, ask if you can do what I did at Crate & Barrel. Asking saved me hundreds here too!
The Buy Back
These sites will also buy your unwanted gift cards for up to 93% of face value. This is pretty handy if you get a stocking stuffer that ain’t so perfect.