Used to but not no more

giftcardNow I don’t know about you but if I was stuck for a Birthday present or a Christmas present for someone, I used to go and buy gift vouchers.

Yes, whatever their hobby, or tastes in clothes you could always get a gift voucher for that store.

Whether it be Next, Argos, Debenhams, Jessops, Comet, HMV or one of the many other schemes.  There was always a voucher out there that people could ask for and they could save those vouchers/gift cards until they find something they like.

But now.. no way.

First of all we had the collapse of Comet, people who had gift cards and vouchers, found that they were not allowed to use them.. The same happened with Jessops… now that was an even quicker close-up of business than Comet.. One day we were told that they were going into receivership, next they were closed.  At least with Comet people had a chance to buy stuff a knocked down prices.

Now we have just heard the HMV are to call in the administrators and it is pretty obvious that they will not honour gift vouchers and gift cards.  People will lose out … yet again.  Now these companies have had your money when you purchased the voucher/gift card.. Now if Cameron wants to do something for the people, he can surely do all he can to enforce companies to honour those vouchers/gift cards.

Now if your bank goes under and you lose your savings, we know that there is a scheme out there that will honour savings up to the value of £85,000 per person per company that have savings in.  This is covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme.  But if you don’t have savings and are living hand to mouth and don’t have the luxury of stashing your cash.. tough luck.. if Companies go down the pan, money you can ill-afford will go down with it.

Does that seem right to you?  It sure as hell doesn’t seem right to me.  So until the economic climate looks more rosey, then I am afraid to say, gift vouchers are off the menu.. I will give cash or cheques… that way I know damn well the person who I give the gift to will get it.. even if the bank goes tits-up.

And likewise I won’t be entering into any food-store savings card schemes either, you know the ones, where you can buy stamps to stick on a card and use them at the end of the year, for special occasions like Christmas or when your card is full.  At least I know there is a bit more security with my cash if it stays in my bank.

And as for staying in Europe, well now I am not so sure… will have to sleep on that one…

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