What to do with gift cards when shops close down

A closed down shop

When some big shops go into administration they no longer accept payment with gift cards - even if you've paid a lot of money for them.

Some shops overcome their troubles and begin accepting gift cards again - but if the company closes down, your gift card many be worthless.

This Newsround guide is to help your parents try to get their money back.

Write to the administrator

If a shop is no longer accepting gift cards, your parents can write to the administrator with proof of how much money is on the card.

The address of the administrator is usually on display in the shop's window or on the shop's website.

A closed down store The administrator's details are usually on display in the shop window

It could take months to get a reply and there's no guarantee you'll get any money back.

Not all administrators will accept claims in this way - but sometimes they do pay back at least some of the money.

Contact the bank

If the person that bought your gift card paid for it with a credit card, they may be able to ask their bank for a refund known as a 'chargeback'.

Credit card companies often agree to take responsibility if a company does not provide something you have paid for.

What about loyalty points?

If you have loyalty card points with a shop that has gone into administration, it may be a good idea to spend them as soon as possible.

Loyalty card points will become worthless if a company closes down and you can't usually be compensated for them.

More information: why do some big shops close down?

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