I’m sitting watching TV mid-December and it’s staggering that of five advertisements I just saw, three of them were for gift cards, for Home Depot, Lowes and McDonalds. The more I think about gift cards, though, the more I really don’t like them and continue to hope that I won’t receive any this year for the holidays.
The problem is that it’s really reducing the thought of gifting down to its crass commercial component, with nothing else. There are perhaps some gift cards that aren’t quite so bad, like a Peet’s card that’s the equivalent of buying someone a dozen cups of coffee, but those are few and far between.
The worst, though, are…
Been to a Safeway store recently? I popped into one a few days ago and was startled to see what a broad range of gift cards they offer. From the Apple Music Store to Borders, you could theoretically do all your holiday shopping (or perhaps I should say “shopping” with quotes) while you’re standing in line with your latest groceries.
I can envision a time in the future where people will go to “gift card central”, pick out the gift cards they want, upload their address book, and poof! All done.
No thought, all transaction.
Or am I just being a bit of a humbug as we roll into the most intense part of the holiday buying frenzy season?