Q:

How can you increase someone else's gift card balance?

A:

Quick Answer

One way to refill a gift card for someone else is to send them an e-refill such as those available from online retailers such as Amazon.com, where users maintain balances online and apply refills directly. You can also buy the person another gift card of the same kind, although it doesn’t increase the balance on an existing gift card.

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Full Answer

In addition to physical swipe cards, many popular retailers now offer e-gift cards, usually delivered via email, that recipients can use directly on the retailers' websites. Some also offer in-store redemption using apps and smart devices. Giving e-gift cards comes closer to gifting someone a bigger gift card balance, although you can’t surprise the recipient by increasing a balance online directly without his login and password information. Other retailers such as Starbucks sell rechargeable gift cards, so that, for instance, an individual can apply a cash gift to the card balance.

Because many retailers do not allow users to recharge physical gift cards, however, often it’s quicker to buy another swipe card. If you can’t find the kind of card you want to give at a local retailer such as Walgreens, Walmart or Target, check websites such as GiftCardGranny.com and GiftCardMall.com that offer a wide variety of gift cards and options for delivery. Many also offer pre-paid debit cards.

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