Solution to Lousy Gift Cards

EGift cards are great, until you get one for a store you don't like

By Adam Kuperstein
|  Monday, Mar 22, 2010  |  Updated 2:49 PM EDT
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Gift Card Pool

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MIAMI - NOVEMBER 21: A gift card rack is seen at the Barnes & Noble store November 21, 2008 in Miami, Florida. Analysts expect gift cards to be a big seller this holiday season. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

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Gift Card Pool

A Website helps you dump those unwanted gift cards.
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Gift cards are great, until you get one for a store you don't like.

"Yes! Like to book stores," said a laughing Jessica Benoit.

Like most high-schoolers, Benoit gets gift cards for birthdays and holidays and puts most of them to use. But, if it's a bookstore, it'll just waste away in her wallet.

But not anymore. Cardpool.com is a new Website that lets you sell your unwanted gift cards for cash.

Sounds like a good idea, right? Well, here's how it works. Enter the merchant name and value of your gift card and then press "Get Offer." The Website then instantly shows you how much money you'll get. If you accept the offer, just mail in your card and within a few days, cardpool.com will mail you a check.

The most popular stores pay out the most money. For instance, a $100 gift card to Target or Wal-Mart will get you $92.

It's all supply and demand. So, less popular places like Kmart and Sears will earn you a check for 80 percent of the card's value.

Cardpool.com also lets you buy gift cards at a discounted rate. And eventually, you'll be able to swap your gift card for one that you like better.

It's like a stock exchange for gift cards, with a couple of ground rules. Cardpool will not buy or sell any gift card with an expiration date or fee.

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