Worst Gift Ever

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I’m sure many people would say the ugly sweater is one of the worst gifts to receive.  I disagree for many reasons.  First of all, people have ugly sweater parties.  Its not like you would want to go out and buy a sweater for said party.  If you received one at any point as a gift, you are golden.  My choice for worst gift is the Amex gift card.  Now, I’m sure many people would argue this is a great gift.  It is free money.  But overall, I would rather ANY gift card but a credit card gift card.  American Express gift cards just happen to be the one I received, and the most repulsive.  A Visa gift card for instance, most people purchase through their bank or at the mall.  There is typically a small fee, usually about $2.  Most of the time, you can get this fee waived.  The Amex gift card, however, is purchased in the most desperate situations.  At the grocery store, staring at a wall of gift cards…. this gift says…”I saw gift cards for 100 different places, and chose the one that cost me $6 extra because I know ABSOLUTELY nothing about you”.

Maybe I am a bad person, but I would rather the $6 extra cash if you wanted to spend that much. 

After attempting to use this card, I would almost rather no gift at all.  The scenarios for using this gift successfully would be fairly limited… I could have made a purchase for over $100, and charged exactly $100 to the gift card.  This is highly unlikely seeing as how Christmas was a month ago and I am in no position to be shopping for expensive items, with or without gift card.  The other way to use this gift card is by tracking exactly how much you are spending on it.  Otherwise, you could get declined.  Since its a credit card…you can get declined.  In my retail experience, this is even WORSE.  When you have a gift card declined…you pretty much have to wait until the next day to attempt to use it, or you have to have the retailer call and verify they did not charge your card.

Now, even with all this information, I was only semi-angry about the Amex gift card.  It was in my final attempt to use it that I decided to write this post.  We finally came across a situation where a $100 gift card would be kind of handy.  Out to dinner, we were going to tip with cash.  I thought the $80-something bill would be a perfect way to free myself of this gift card burden.  Away goes our bill and a few minutes later, returns our flamboyant waiter “I’m sooooooooo sorry, we don’t take gift cards”.  This annoyed me, because even though it says “wherever American Express is accepted” right on the card, I realized that restaurants need to authorize a much higher amount than just your bill to allow for tipping.  Bastards.

My plan is to find out exactly what is left on the card and load a Starbucks gift card for that exact amount.  At least there, they will let it easily drain to zero…and I know I will use it eventually.

What’s the worst gift you have received?

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  • Kevin said,

    A bible with oversized text for the vision impaired.

  • lydonwrites said,

    Burgundy sweatshirt with a Labrador Retriever silkscreened on the front, 2 sizes too small, a year after my last dog, a Lab, was put to sleep.

    Thanks, Gram!

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