Selling gift cards

Gift cards are a convenient and popular product for many consumers.

Terms and conditions

You should be clear about the terms and conditions on gift cards:

  • Don’t mislead your customers. This can be about which products they can buy with the card or any other terms and conditions of use.
  • Give a reasonable time period for the gift card recipient to use the card. We recommend more than 12 months. Make the expiry date clear on the card.
  • Be specific about inclusions and exclusions. If a gift card is for a shopping centre, make it clear which stores are included and excluded.
  • Give the buyer a copy of your terms and conditions. Encourage them to pass it on to the gift card recipient. Make your terms and conditions available on your website and in-store.
  • Record the details of any gift cards you sell. Then you can replace lost or stolen cards.

Values and balances

Here are some guidelines about the values and balances on gift cards:

  • Don’t set a limit on the minimum amount a customer must spend to use the gift card. For example, a customer who wants to use a gift card with a low balance (such as $4) should not have to spend a minimum amount (e.g. $10) to use the card.
  • Don't force a customer to use the whole amount in one transaction. For example, you should allow a customer to spend $40 of a $100 gift card by adjusting the remaining value on the gift card or issuing a new gift card for $60.
  • Offer cash change for small amounts remaining on the card. For example, if the gift card is for $100, and the consumer has redeemed at least $90, you should offer to pay the rest of the original value in cash.
  • Let customers check the balance on their gift card for free. An online service is best, but if not available, the service should be available in-store.

Business changing hands

Make sure to keep your customers advised of the status of their gift cards if:

  • your business changes hands
  • it goes into administration, receivership or liquidation.

If you sell your business, we encourage you to take steps to make sure that the new owner will still honour your gift cards.