Ever find yourself wishing you had an extra $20?
There are so many expenses we wish we had just a bit of extra income to cover. Sometimes, it’s a rent check. You can pay it on time, but a bit of wiggle room would bring peace of mind. It might be an extra fund for groceries, especially around the holidays when you need to buy extra supplies.
Perhaps it’s those date nights that involve staying in inside of going out or the concert tickets you have to pass up. Regardless of how that extra bit of cash would help, all of us could use some additional income—but not many of us want to pursue a second job.
That’s where selling gift cards online comes in.
Digging out your old, unused gift cards and receiving cash for them instead allows you the flexibility of using that money for whatever you need. Instead of, for example, having to find a way to use a gift card to a home improvement store, you could exchange the card and use the money to cover a birthday gift for a friend.
The possibilities are endless, but here are 12 ideas for how to spend that extra cash you’ll gain when you exchange your gift cards for cash online.
Pay Portions of Rent and Save Elsewhere
When it comes to paying rent, the amount always feels too high. It’s hard to write a monthly check and see so much of your income disappear. But selling gift cards online allows you to put that money toward one month’s rent—and save part of your paycheck for something else.
That money could go toward any number of other expenses you might normally pass by. For example, if an exchanged gift card covers just $20 of your rent, that extra $20 might go toward a dinner out or a special event.
Better yet, covering part of your rent with old gift cards could allow you to put some money into your savings account. This could set you on a path of savings that will pay off in the long run. With even just $20 placed in a savings account, you could end up with enough for a future move, a trip, or a larger purchase for the home.
Extra Groceries (and Those Fun Splurges!)
We all know the feeling of seeing a fun, seasonal product in the store—pumpkin spice muffin mix, anyone?—and passing it by because of the grocery budget. While it’s good to stick to a budget and only buy what is needed, sometimes a little more room for fun is appreciated.
By trading in gift cards for cash online, you can use the money gained for the groceries you truly want. You may have enough room for splurge purchases, a fancy ingredient, or a great cut of meat. You may just decide not to clip coupons for a month since you have a bigger budget. Either way, extra cash can alleviate the pressure of a strict grocery budget.
There are also always extra grocery purchases that come up throughout the year. During the holidays, additional baking supplies, which can be expensive, are needed. Why not clean out your wallet and get some cash for those unused gift cards? The money you receive can cover extra batches of cookies at Christmas, in addition to supplies needed for dinner parties or birthday cakes.
A Special Night Out
Being creative with date nights is getting easier and easier, as so many couples have written about their ideas and posted online. Cooking at home can be a bonding experience, and sometimes staying in for a movie or game night is just as special and cozy as a night out.
But nothing makes a couple feel more special than getting dressed up, making a reservation at a restaurant, and feeling like movie stars for a night. These nights become few and far between, though, as income goes to the practical needs everyone brings to their relationships, such as rent and other bills.
By selling gift cards online, a fancy date night could become possible. The key to funding one of those nights might be stuck at the bottom of your purse, tucked away in a wallet, or even hidden in an old birthday card.
If you aren’t using those cards, trade them in for cash you can use for anything! With that money, you can treat yourself and a loved one to an evening unlike any other.
Entertainment: Concerts, Games, Movies, and More
How many of us look at the movie theatre’s prices and decide to wait until the film is available to rent?
In all likelihood, most people fall into that category.
Going to the movies has become an expensive proposition, one that many people decide to skip altogether because their money has to go somewhere else that month. But if you had some extra cash from selling gift cards, a fun night at the movies could be in your future.
Other forms of entertainment could be possible, too. What about the concert you’ve been dreaming about since you bought that band’s first album or the first game of the season for your favorite team? Instead of eating peanut butter sandwiches for a month, exchange some old gift cards—we all have them lying around—and get those tickets!
Gifts for All Occasions
There are so many occasions worthy of gifts that come up throughout the year. It might be the bottle of wine you bring for a dinner party, a cousin’s birthday party, or a donation for a parting gift for a coworker. Regardless, these thoughtful gestures can become expensive and wreak havoc on a monthly budget.
Instead, doing the minor work of finding those gift cards you’ve haven’t spent in years and selling them online for cash will help with these expenses. It’s good to have a bit of room in the budget for little things like gifts for others if the time comes up. If you’re not using the gift cards at their locations, why not use the money for something you truly need?
Donations to Causes You Love
Many of us have causes that we believe in, often because we’re connected to their reason for existing somehow. For some, it’s a family history of cancer, so organizations supporting research for a cure hold a special place in our hearts. For others, it’s the arts nonprofits making their towns look beautiful and offering classes that we find valuable.
The specifics vary, but we often feel led to support the causes we love financially. Sadly, though, this is not always possible. We have to find creative ways to come up with some extra finances to donate.
Getting rid of old gift cards that go unused is one way to do that. If you are not using them, think of who might need the funds you’ll receive in return. It will be extremely fulfilling to use the resources you have to help others in need!
Funding Vacations: Hotels, Gas, and the Fun Stuff
Putting necessary travel aside, such as family gatherings, there are always those fun trips we want to take but must save for over long periods of time. Extra cash from selling gift cards online can help with necessary travel, too, but they can also bring a vacation around sooner rather than later.
A vacation requires lots of expenses, and they add up quickly. From accommodations (hotels or other lodging) to travel (gas or flights), many people find themselves with little room for the fun stuff. This could be local restaurants, attractions, or souvenirs.
If you’re ready to go on a vacation but are waiting in order to save for the extras, look no further than your own wallet. Take those old gift cards and trade them in for money you can use for a great vacation meal, the souvenir T-shirt, or the tour of a local attraction. With that extra money, the vacation is complete!
Keeping Up with Gas Prices
One holiday weekend, and you could see your gas expenses skyrocket, even if you’re not traveling. Keeping up with gas prices can sometimes prove difficult, especially when trying to stay within a monthly budget.
Extra cash from selling gift cards could be the key to surfing those price waves effectively, though. Instead of fearing a big jump in prices because of what it could do to your budget, use your cards to create a reserve fund just in case prices change. The cushion you create can truly contribute to the peace of mind you’ll feel.
Home Upgrades: Adding Some Spark
We may like where we live, but we all want to upgrade little portions of our homes. What about the window you picture covered with new curtains or the cute kitchen towels you spotted while out shopping? Perhaps it’s a new lamp for the living room or even a new decorative element.
With a bit of extra cash, you could have the money necessary for these upgrades. While they might be minor, they can make a home feel new and exciting. They also may be passed up as other necessities claim the money you’ve earned, but the money you gain after exchanging gift cards can be used for fun purchases like these.
Brightening Up the Wardrobe
Take a peek in your closet: how many articles of clothing have you owned for more than 5 years? If the answer is most of your clothing, it’s time to invest in some new pieces. But often, new clothes get cut from our budgets. Some additional money would come in handy when out shopping.
You would be able to splurge on a few key pieces that would reinvigorate your wardrobe. This way, those pieces will become staples and last as long as your other clothing has. It only takes a few upgrades to make your wardrobe look new again.
Savings Accounts Deposits: Looking Ahead
Haven’t been able to save recently? Keeping some money tucked away in a savings account is important, especially when it comes to preparing for emergencies. If you haven’t been able to save on a regular basis, a deposit from money you earn from old gift cards could jump start your savings plan.
Once that first $20 goes in, you will see the benefit of having that cushion in your finances. While you may not be able to save the same amount each month, every little bit counts toward being prepared. Selling gift cards online could be the start of a robust savings account.
There are those main bills to pay—rent, Internet, and more—but what about the smaller bills you have? It might be your half of the water bill, a doctor’s visit, or even a parking ticket. You could cover those smaller amounts by selling unused gift cards.
Though your income from gift cards won’t be as consistent as other methods of income, it could get you through a tough month or help alleviate some of the pressure from an unexpected bill.
When it comes to selling gift cards online, searching high and low for options is key. Look in your wallet, junk drawers, old holiday cards—you might have a forgotten gift card anywhere in your home. Once you’ve found them, exchange them for cash online and put the money toward something you truly need or want.
There are many more options than those listed; everyone will bring his or her unique financial needs to the table. But everyone can benefit from a little creativity in terms of income, and that’s where exchanging gift cards for some extra money comes in. Whether it’s used for new clothes, bills, savings accounts or even a vacation fund, the funds from gift card balances have proven to come in handy for many people.