Gift card discounts like free money

Published On: Jan 11 2013 06:23:56 PM EST
Updated On: Jan 13 2013 11:00:00 PM EST
MIAMI -

If that holiday gift card you stuffed in the desk drawer isn’t quite what you wanted, you can dump it for up to 92 percent of the face value.

Oh, and if you would like to buy a gift card below the full cash value, all you have to do is go online and start shopping. You may end up getting those cards at a 35 percent discount.

Sites like giftcardGranny.com, giftcardmall.com and swapagift.com offer various cards at a discount off the cash value.

Barry Rubin, a semi-retired businessman, has been scouting gift card websites for seven years, buying cash cards for everything from movies to retailers and restaurants.

“It’s a wonderful idea,” Rubin said. “It doesn’t cost you anything and you’re saving money every time you do it.”

Rubin’s wife, Leslie, said she picks the stores she frequents most and lets her husband find the gift card deals.

“For me, it’s like free money," she said, "because we don’t see a bill.”

One of Rubin’s favorite sites is CardCash.com. The website offers roughly 150 company gift card options all sold at a discount.

Rubin read off discounts from the site during an interview: “Calvin Klein 9 percent off, Callaway Golf 23 percent off, Applebees 8 percent off,  Ann Taylors 22 percent off , Build-A-Bear 10 percent off.”

Rubin said the best discount deal he’s found so far was a $500 Darden Restaurants gift card for $400.

“There’s no charge for shipping, so I buy a $50 gift card for $45, I pay them $45 and they mail it to me," he said.

The gift card values vary from site to site. There are no shipping fees, and no expiration dates.

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