by Andi B.

I’m a huge fan of gift cards. I’m an even bigger fan of holiday gift card sales. Many restaurants, retailers, and service providers are selling gift certificates/cards at a discount. If you can stock up on these sales now, it offers you a year-long discount on purchases you would already make.
What’s the downside? First of all, you may not be willing or able to buy a year’s worth of restaurant visits or yoga classes right now. Secondly, many providers use a provision in the laws of some states that allows them to put expiration dates on gc’s that have been discounted. (This isn’t generally allowed on normal gcs.)
What if it’s not offered? Rule #1 is “don’t ask, don’t get.” If you have a service provider that you see on a regular basis, ask if they would be willing to give you a discount on gift certificates if you bought a certain dollar amount. Many independent people will take you up on the deal.
And remember: Be sure to ask if there are any restrictions on use. You don’t want to buy a dozen massage gc’s only to find out you’re only allowed to use one every six months.