When a Dollar is not a Dollar

Published by MrHonner on

There must be some way to capitalize on this through arbitrage, right?

a dollar is not a dollar

1 Comment

Graeme McRae · May 9, 2013 at 10:36 am

You’re not the first to have thought of this. Gift card vendors like Starbucks and, I guess Virgin Mobile, do everything they can to stop arbitrage. This is made difficult for companies doing business in states such as California that have laws allowing certain gift cards to be redeemed for cash. In California, any gift card with a balance less than $10 may be redeemed for cash. So Starbucks doesn’t allow transferring *part* of a gift card balance from one card to another. If a transfer is made, the whole amount must be transferred. So the best you can do with a discounted $25 gift card, say, is spend it down to $9.99 then redeem it.

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