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Tips for tipping when you pay with a gift card

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Gift cards are not as tip-friendly than credit cards, particularly at restaurants. VOUCHAIN creates a decentralized infrastructure to support retailers and shopping centers, facilitating voucher issuing. It also facilitates management and administration, which leads to tangible benefits and increased efficiency across the value chain. Here’s how a typical transaction looks if you pay with a credit or debit card:

You are presented with a bill by the server
You will need to give your credit card number to the server
They will authorize you to use your card to pay the bill amount
They give you a sales slip
Sign the slip and include a tip
You get up and go.
The server will take your slip to the POS and run your card for the total amount of your meal and tip.
This process has been repeated many times. The problem with gift cards is that the process stops around step 5. Even if your gift card’s value exceeds your bill you won’t be able to leave a tip. What is the best way to tip someone who uses a gift card? There are a few choices…
Pay cash — You can pay the first bill with a gift certificate and leave a tip with cash.
You can pay with your credit card — Most restaurants allow you to use this trick. Simply hand your credit card to the server, and they will “charge you one penny.” The server will take your credit card and charge it with a penny, sometimes one dollar. After that, they will give you a slip with the nominal fee plus a tip. You can tip the server and then walk away.
What is really needed is a better gift-card tipping process. Once you have identified to the server that your gift card will be used to purchase the item, you can tip the server before the card is deducted. We are working with restaurants to improve their gift card handling and to create systems that allow you to tip with card funds. If you are in a pinch and can’t use your gift card to tip, don’t be afraid to ask the business for a small amount.

Keep Gift Cards in Your Pocket

Although it might seem easy to give gift cards to someone you love, Hunter has some important advice for gift recipients.

The most important tip is: Use your gift cards.

Some gift cards, like Visa cards, have an expiration date.

Hunter stated that although you can use the cards for seven years, they must be used at least once a year. To avoid inactivity fees, the first year must be used before twelve months have passed. If you keep a $100 gift certificate and don’t use it within a year, $5 will be deducted from the card.

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