Congrats – We have now made it through another year holiday madness! This means that it’s a great time of year to be for all that you have. However, it’s about that time to return all those not-so-great gifts or ill-fitting outfits in the hopes of finding something stellar to rock this year…and now those returns can include gift cards. We partnered with Coinstar Exchange to test out their latest kiosks, which let you exchange unwanted gift cards for straight cash.
Everyone returns bad gifts. Why wouldn’t we go back and get a present we actually like? But what about gift cards? If you received a gift card to a store you don’t frequent, or have one collecting dust from last year, there is still hope! Coinstar Exchange, known for its kiosks where you can turn in coins for paper money, now has kiosks for gift cards as well. You can cash in your old gift cards for cash vouchers in most major cities. In a few simple steps, voila! You can transform those unwanted gift cards into easy money.
GET THOSE GIFT CARDS
This is the easy part! Whether they’re from white elephant parties, family members who weren’t quite sure what to get you, or ineffective re-gifts, we all have a few gift cards that we don’t know what to do with. So clean out your wallet, old birthday cards and junk drawers for loot.
This is key! You can bring whatever cards you like to the kiosk, but there only certain brands accepted. The range is wide, but you can double check to make sure your card is on their approved list, alphabetized on the site. There were a few gift cards from local shops and smaller stores that didn’t make the cut, but many major brands are accepted.
And make sure it’s a “Coinstar Exchange,” which is the yellow tab on the website. You can’t use just a normal Cointar Kiosk, because you can only cash out change at those, and not every location has both types of kiosk. But you can search by zip code to easily find and map the nearest kiosk to you.
SCAN GIFT CARDS FOR YOUR VOUCHER
There is a $20 minimum on gift cards accepted, so anything under that amount can be saved for your own re-gifting in future holiday seasons. But so long as they’re over $20, you can scan or enter all the cards you’d like to use. Then you’ll have to verify your ID so don’t forget your driver’s license. Just a couple quick swipes and you’re one step away from getting your mullah! Each gift card grants you a different percentage of cash back, but you won’t walk away empty handed.
PRINT AND REDEEM YOUR VOUCHER
And get ready to spend your new found cash!
This is a truly great and easy system, and I can’t believe I haven’t heard of it before now. If you have one in your area (what up Chicago and Boston girls!), I highly recommend going through your old gift cards and cashing in with Coinstar Exchange.
Editor’s Note: Coinstar Exchange provided sample gift card and compensation for the piece but the opinions and account are editor’s own.