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CardCash review

CardCash promises a lot to buyers, but we're not so sure it delivers.

CardCash Gift Card Exchange
(Image: © CardCash)

Our Verdict

A good option for those looking to sell a gift card, but buyers might want to look elsewhere.

For

  • User-friendly app
  • Fast payout
  • Option to trade your unwanted card
  • Good offers if you’re looking to sell your gift card

Against

  • Cards only guaranteed for 45 days
  • Misleading website, with lower discounts than it leads you to expect
  • Decent but not amazing BBB rating

Founded in 2009, CardCash has a history of offering great deals on gift cards. The website claims to have resold more than $140 billion in unwanted gift cards at a discounted price for consumers. It carries gift cards from more than 1,100 retailers. 

While this can vary day to day, we did notice in general that the selection did appear to be larger than with many competing websites. Just a cursory glance gave us cards from Taco Bell, Ikea and Shake Shack. This is a great selection, even when compared to the best gift card exchange sites

 CardCash: Selling your gift card  

  • Offers you more for your money
  • Option to trade giftcards or simply take the cash

What makes this website a great value is the money you’ll get back when selling any unwanted gift cards. Our tests looked at how much we could sell a $20 Walmart, Kohl’s and Target gift card for. CardCash offered $17.60 for a Walmart voucher - an offer comparable to other leading companies. Target, and also Kohl’s, had a competitive offer of $16.20. If you want to get the most for your money CardCash looks like a better site to try than some competitors.

CardCash promises up to 92 percent of the card’s full value, though this will vary depending on the card as well as its supply and demand. To sell your card, all you do is select the merchant, enter the balance and click "get offer." It's really that easy. If you opt for a payout you can choose between getting your money via direct deposit, PayPal or a check in the mail. Payout only takes 1-2 business days, which is a lot faster than most of the websites we reviewed.

You can also opt to trade your unwanted gift card for one from another retailer, in which case you can expect to get up to 11 percent more than you would if you just sold it. In our tests we got a $17.60 payout offer on a $20 Walmart card, and could exchange it for an $18.30 Uber voucher or similar amounts with a variety of retailers. Keep in mind you might get a different offer depending on whether CardCash has a lot of that particular card available and if people are searching for it frequently. You most likely won’t be asked to mail in a gift card, but there’s a chance you might. Make sure to read the fine print on any transaction.

CardCash: Buying gift cards

  • Misleading website lets CardCash down
  • 45 day buyer protection guarantee - significantly less time than competitors

Buying cards is very easy. Once you select the retailer, all available cards are listed with their dollar amount, and how much of a discount they're available at. The gift card format is also shown prominently on the web page, so you know if you’re getting an electronic card or will have to wait for one to arrive in the mail. If you buy a physical gift card, shipping can take up to 7 business days, which is a bit faster than most of the websites we tested.

It was annoying once we realized retailers listed on CardCash home page didn’t actually have any gift cards available for purchase, making the company a bit less transparent than others. We also found it a bit odd that some tiny discounts were listed. If you’re desperate for a Walmart discount, 0.3% is better than nothing, but we don’t know if it’s worth the hassle of buying a $20 gift card when it’ll cost you $19.94, saving only 6 cents. 

When testing for discounted American Eagle gift cards, we were promised up to 18.1% off - better than most competitors. However, when we clicked through on the link the actual discount offered was again 0.3%, making the offer of up to 18.1% off misleading, and this was a pattern that cropped up multiple times when using CardCash.

CardCash offers a 45 day buyer protection guarantee, which isn’t long to spend your voucher risk-free. The 45-day guarantee isn’t as good as some websites like Raise which guarantee their cards for an entire year, but it’s also better than websites that don’t offer any kind of guarantee.

CardCash also has a free mobile app, which is great if you don’t want to be tied to a desktop or laptop. The mobile option is nice, but what’s more important is this website’s lack of fees. You won’t be charged anything for shipping and since the payout time is so fast, this gift card exchange website is really a great value.

 CardCash: Customer reviews 

  • A slightly troubling history
  • BBB rating of B, better than most

While we don’t think the Better Business Bureau has the last word when it comes to where you should shop, CardCash was flagged by the consumer watchdog group in 2016 for selling cards that expired 45 days after purchase. Per the complaint, CardCash began publicizing the fact that the cards it sells are only guaranteed within 45 days of purchase. 

In October 2017, the BBB still felt the steps that had been implemented hadn't eliminated the problem. Still, even with that bump in the road, CardCash holds a B- rating with the group. CardCash does only guarantee its cards for 45 days, but the website notes legislation from the mid-2000s means gift cards shouldn’t have expiration dates anymore, so don’t worry. The website also won’t buy any cards from sellers if they have an expiration date.  

CardCash: Verdict

CardCash promises a lot to buyers and we’re not so sure it delivers. While it offers ‘up to’ significantly high discounts on vouchers for big retailers, the reality is often disappointing with less than a percentage off full retail price - which really isn’t worth the bother. If you are able to find a good deal you should take into account the 45 day guarantee and get spending! 

However, if you’re looking to sell your gift card you might be in for more luck. The rates offered by CardCash were higher than most competitors, making them a good option if you want to sell your gift card for as much as possible. The option of PayPal and direct debit payments also mean you can have this money in a matter of days, which is faster than most other gift card exchange companies.