Earlier this morning I received a marketing email from Lowes, reminding me that gift cards can be spent online on their year-end tool deals. I wasn’t going to mention it, but it got me thinking about a few things.
I sometimes hate gift cards, store credit too. They always nag at me, constantly reminding me that their balance must be spent before I lose or forget about them. And then under pressure, I browse and browse and buy something in a hurry.
But most of the time, I really enjoy spending tool-related gift cards. Back a few years ago when I was still building up my essential tool collection, I redeemed hundreds of dollars worth of credit card reward points for gift cards. I then used those gift cards to whittle down my wishlist of hand and power tools.
Now, there’s not so much that I need anymore, but I still have a growing wishlist full of wants. And that’s the beauty of gift cards – they almost give you permission to buy some of the things you want but don’t necessarily need.
Right now I have a couple of hundred dollars in Amazon gift cards that were converted from accumulated credit card reward points. Will I splurge for some more Bosch L-Boxxes or Festool Systainers? A Festool woodworking router? Knipex bolt cutters that I would only use sparingly? Or maybe that $45 pepper grinder that everyone’s raving about. And then there’s the Stanley Fubar III that’s been on my wishlist for over 3-years now – it looks bad-ass but I have zero need for one.
What about you? Do you love or hate gift cards? Retail stores will try to convince you to spend your gift cards on after-Christmas and end-of-year tool sales, but I say spend them on something you want but wouldn’t feel right spending cash on.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have an Amazon gift card that’s burning a hole in my pocket.