Can You Buy Gift Cards With a Credit Card?

Buying present playing cards with a bank card is feasible and sometimes fairly handy and helpful. It may be a simple method to maximize your rewards — however you’ll wish to play your playing cards proper.

That’s as a result of there are some potential restrictions, drawbacks or prices you could possibly encounter, relying in your bank card issuer, the present card quantity, the place of buy and your individual spending habits.

Here’s what to learn about shopping for present playing cards with bank cards.

Buying a present card with a bank card can ‘lock in’ rewards or reductions

Buying present playing cards with a bank card isn’t a lot completely different from ordering one thing on-line or shopping for gadgets at your native grocery store. In truth, you gained’t have bother discovering present playing cards on the market in each these locations, to not point out on-line and in retailer at retailers large and small — from Target and Walmart to the nook gasoline station, and even on web sites specializing in present card resales.

And in lots of instances, utilizing a rewards card for these sorts of purchases could make quite a lot of sense. You’ll earn money again or factors on the acquisition of the present card itself, and you may then flip round and use that present card at a unique service provider.

This could be a significantly helpful technique for bank cards that characteristic bonus classes. For instance, the Discover it® Cash Back provides 5% money again in rotating quarterly classes on as much as $1,500 in purchases every quarter (activation is required; 1% again on all different purchases). Historically, these 5% bonus classes have included issues like gasoline stations and grocery shops.

But what for those who, say, drive an electrical automobile, or aren’t a lot of a house prepare dinner? Gas stations and grocery shops may not be large line gadgets in your finances for any specific quarter — however you could possibly nonetheless use your bank card in these locations to purchase present playing cards for retailers that you simply do go to usually. Maybe use your bank card at Kroger to choose up a present card to your favourite restaurant as an alternative.

Or say you’ve gotten a card just like the Target REDcard™ Credit Card, which provides a 5% low cost on all eligible Target purchases — together with many present playing cards to different retailers. While you’re within the checkout line at Target, you could possibly purchase a Disney present card or two utilizing your Target bank card, thereby locking in 5% off your loved ones trip to the favored theme park.

But it’s not at all times attainable, or advisable

Processing bank card transactions comes at a value for companies, so some smaller retailers might take solely money or debit card funds to start with. Others might not settle for playing cards that run on sure cost networks, like American Express. That may restrict your choices for getting present playing cards, relying on what sort of plastic is in your pockets.

And whatever the cost methodology, there can also be limits on the variety of present playing cards you should purchase at one time. Walgreens, as an example, will cancel an order of sure sorts of present playing cards if the mixed quantity is over $750 for a pickup order.

Similarly, bank card issuers themselves might have their very own guidelines. For occasion, whereas you should utilize the Target REDcard™ Credit Card to purchase present playing cards to Target itself, these purchases should not eligible for the 5% low cost.

And typically, bank card issuers are likely to frown on so-called manufactured spending. Buying a present card or two — perhaps even a handful — together with your bank card may not increase crimson flags. But shopping for a number of hundred {dollars} price of them in an try and hit the spending threshold for a bank card sign-up bonus? That might be a giant drawback.

In truth, many bank card issuers particularly forbid it of their positive print. Violating that rule could lead on your issuer to claw again rewards or, worst-case state of affairs, shutter your account solely and bar you from making use of for its bank cards once more.

Nerdy tip: It’s additionally price noting that some present playing cards might expire, though the Credit Card Act of 2009 typically requires that they final for a minimum of 5 years from the date of activation. Still, make certain your present playing cards don’t get misplaced in your junk drawer.

A notice about present playing cards that operate like pay as you go debit playing cards

Not all present playing cards are created equal.

Most of them are usable with one particular retailer till the funds on the cardboard are exhausted. But others — from cost networks like Visa, Mastercard or American Express — can be utilized anyplace that accepts playing cards from these networks. They would possibly even be reloadable.

But a number of phrases of warning about utilizing a bank card to purchase these sorts of merchandise.

First, count on to pay a purchase order charge on prime of the cardboard’s face worth for those who purchase Visa, Mastercard or American Express present playing cards. The buy charge applies whether or not you purchase them in a retailer or on-line, and it tends to extend with the present quantity. Buying a $50 Mastercard present card from the Mastercard web site will value you an additional $2.95. The buy charge is $5.95 for a $500 present card.

This sort of present card permits the recipient to purchase virtually something, however because the giver, you could possibly keep away from paying the acquisition charge by simply giving money as an alternative.

And as with conventional present playing cards, there could also be restrictions on such purchases, from both the vendor or your bank card firm. At Target, as an example, the restrict is 5 Visa, Mastercard or American Express present playing cards per particular person in someday.

And once more, making an attempt to fabricate bank card spending by snapping up these sorts of merchandise may land you in scorching water together with your card issuer.

Should you purchase present playing cards with a bank card?

The quick reply is sure, if it is smart for you and your buy habits, and if you are able to do so inside the guidelines of your bank card issuer and the service provider promoting the present card.

You ought to really feel comfy utilizing your bank card to purchase a few present playing cards to, say, Lowe’s or Sephora or Domino’s — however much less so for those who’re making an attempt to buy a number of Visa present playing cards in $700 denominations on the identical procuring journey.

An excellent rule of thumb? If you’re making an attempt to refill on present playing cards, purpose to unfold out these purchases over a time period and throughout a number of transactions.