We’ve all been there – saying ‘thank you’, accepting a gift and smiling while wishing they’d bought you a gift card. Christmas is the time you get the gift you don’t need, don’t want and immediately wonder if they have the receipt and you can return it as soon as the shops open!
You’ll wish you had a gift card instead. Rather than queuing at the customer service desk, you could be choosing a gift that you want and appreciating the thoughtfulness of the giver!
In the days following Christmas – as soon as the sales throw open their doors – there are queues of disappointed consumers wanting to return or exchange their less than appreciated gifts.
The top five most common unwanted gifts
The range of unwanted gifts is endless because what makes a great a gift for one person may be a terrible gift for another. But we have all experienced unimaginative gifts, usually from our family. Have you ever received any of the following and wished that the giver had chosen a gift card instead?
Returning unwanted gifts
In many instances being able to return an unwanted gift is at the discretion of the retailer who is likely to provide an in-store credit for a returned gift provided it is unused. Change of mind is not a consumer guarantee protected under Australian Consumer Law. However, you do have the right to a repair, refund or replacement if goods or services bought in Australia do not meet one or more consumer guarantees.
These protections also apply when you buy goods or services online from a business based in Australia as you are protected by the same Australian Consumer Law that applies when you make a purchase at a physical store.
Returning goods is never a pleasure and can be more difficult with gifts if you don’t have proof of purchase. This can be a receipt, credit card statement, lay-by agreement, or confirmation or receipt number from a phone or online purchase. But if you don’t know where it was purchased and don’t want to ask the giver, you may be stuck with it or plan to re-gift it on another occasion. If only you had been given a prepaid gift card!
Online retailer Gumtree reports a 30 per cent increase in new advertisements immediately after Christmas with unwanted gifts being advertised online.
A gift card is always a wanted gift
Avoid the embarrassment of returning a gift in-store or re-gifting it and hoping someone else will like it. Join the gift card revolution, where the giver and the receiver know that a gift card is the right choice.
People prefer the flexibility of a gift card because they can buy what they want, when they want, or put the value of the card towards an item of their choice.
Research by Retail Decisions Australia shows that up to 70 per cent of people think gift cards are better than cash. They are convenient, suitable for anyone, offer choice and are universally appreciated because the receiver can buy what they want.
When businesses are looking at end of year budget and considering suitable Christmas gifts for their staff and clients, they are recognising there are multiple benefits for both employers and employees when they opt for a gift card program.
Benefits of giving a gift card
Employees name gift cards as their gift of choice as they can choose what they want to buy. Who wouldn’t want to choose their own present?
Staff retention is an important factor in employers looking for ways to incentivise and reward their staff. When employees feel appreciated by their employers, they are more satisfied with their job, loyal to their employer and are less likely to look for another job. The cost of recruitment and staff turnover is a major expense that can be minimised if a business has loyal and committed staff.
Appreciate your employees and give a gift card this year. Christmas theme cards can be viewed at