[REACT-LIST] [REACTINTL] There's More Off Topic Ranting

Ron McCracken ron.mccr at hotmail.com
Mon Jan 19 09:09:20 EST 2015

Tom, you have just added very useful information about double taxation to the discussion that I, for one, was entirely unaware of and I thank you for it. Good to know. Another excellent reason to avoid gift cards like the plague. I will have to check to see if it applies in Canada as well. 

As Ed mentioned, I fully expect most REACTers would prefer to spend their money on radios, etc., than hand it in good faith to outfits like VISA, etc., for highly quesitonable 'fees' and unauthorized expenditures. That is precisely why I posted the information to our Lists. Other commenters seem to have appreciated it. Those who were not interested likely hit the delete key, as I would in similar circumstances. When I post it is because I trust the information will be of some value to most REACTers. Thanks for adding your important contribution.

To: reactintl at yahoogroups.com; reactcommunications at yahoogroups.com; react-list at lists.reactintl.net
From: REACTcommunications at yahoogroups.com
Date: Mon, 19 Jan 2015 00:19:56 -0500
Subject: Re: [REACTINTL] There's More Off Topic Ranting





This constant OFF TOPIC ranting is getting old quick.   You find 
one small fact about one particular company's card and you scream about it as if 
it makes any difference to anyone.   
In case anyone really cares, the activation fee on a gift card is paid by 
the person buying the card.  So if a person buys a $25 gift card that 
happens to have a $3.95 activation fee, then the person buying that card pays 
$28.95 and the person who get the card gets a card with $25 on it.   
The majority of gift cards do have some sort of fee involved.  Some more 
than others.  Gift cards for a specific store or restaurant often have no 
fee if bought at that store or restaurant, but may have a fee if bought 
elsewhere.  Some gift cards can be bought at a discount -- especially 
around the holidays you see restaurants and stores with promotions where you can 
buy $50 in gift cards and get a $5 or even $10 card free; so you spend $50 to 
buy two $25 gift cards but you get the two $25 cards and one $5 or $10 card all 
for $50.   The stores and especially restaurants count on the fact 
that many gift cards are never fully used because people don't hang on to the 
card if they have used most of the value - and, of course, some people simply 
lose their card or forget about it until it expires (almost all cards do 
There really is one actual rip-off on these pre-paid gift cards, at least 
in the United States:  When you buy the card, you pay sales tax on the full 
value of the card, then when the person uses the card they also pay sales tax on 
whatever they are buying (if it happens to be taxable), so the government 
usually gets double sales tax on the card.


From: mailto:REACTINTL at yahoogroups.com 

Sent: Sunday, January 18, 2015 17:19 PM
To: RI Yahoo ; RI Communications ; RI List 
Subject: [REACTINTL] There's More!

Someone just 
advised that there is also a $3.95 activation fee on these wonderful VISA 
gift cards. 

Imagine the gall. I don't know if the giver or the recipient 
gets the thrill of paying that one. There goes another 17% in 'fees' on a $25 
gift card. VISA is out to get everyone, just as it does with its interest 'fees' 
of about 20+%. MC will be right in there too. I hope this warning helps save you 
a lot of money. Blessings 

From: ron.mccr at hotmail.com
To: reactintl at yahoogroups.com; 
reactcommunications at yahoogroups.com; react-list at lists.reactintl.net
Sun, 18 Jan 2015 15:39:17 -0500
Subject: Re: [REACT-LIST] [REACTINTL] Beware 
Gift Cards

Whatever the 
case, beware. 

Imagine what would happen to any of us if we altered the 
amount on a bill without full customer authorization. We would quickly be 
cooling our heels in jail. VISA and other major corporations seem to operate 
under a 'different' set of laws. VISA allows businesses to add the 20% as much 
as 24 hr. after you leave. That is outright theft or fraud. 

Radio Shack, 
and many others, pulled the same stunt with their 'fees'. Fittingly, someone 
reported lately that RS is about to file for bankruptcy. Not surprising, when 
you mistreat customers as RS did. It is an insult to the honourable companies 
that do deal honestly with gift cards. 

The man in the news report had 
already left a tip at his table. A second tip appeared on his VISA slip. I 
believe he refused to sign the slip. He also went back and reclaimed his first 
tip from the table before he left. That is exactly what we all need to do if we 
catch any business doing it. Be very careful before you sign with VISA or MC, 
etc. Check your monthly statement closely too, for 'surprise' alterations, and 
raise the roof when you find them.  

To: reactcommunications at yahoogroups.com; reactintl at yahoogroups.com; 
react-list at lists.reactintl.net
From: REACTINTL at yahoogroups.com
Date: Sun, 
18 Jan 2015 01:36:21 -0500
Subject: Re: [REACTINTL] Beware Gift 



Any tip added to the charge is added by the restaurant, not Visa, and 
restaurants do that regardless of whether the card is a gift card or a regular 
charge card.  
But many pre-paid charge cards (which is what gift cards all are) do have 
monthly service charges - with some cards the charges start a fixed time after 
the card is loaded, with others the charges start a time after the first time 
the card is used.  Generally the best thing to do with any "Gift" Card is 
to use the full balance as soon as you can, preferably in a single 


From: mailto:REACTINTL at yahoogroups.com 

Sent: Saturday, January 17, 2015 15:18 PM
To: RI Communications ; RI 
Yahoo ; RI List 
Subject: [REACTINTL] Beware Gift Cards

Did you get a 
VISA gift card from anyone? Beware. It likely has a little built-in 

Use your VISA gift card at many restaurants and it will ding 
you for a 20% tip. You may already have left a tip at your table, or you 
may add one to your cheque. Surprise! VISA will graciously add another 
20% anyway, automatically. That bumps your tip up to 40% or so. 
Not too many of us are tippers in that bracket. 

Look at your bill very 
carefully before and after you sign. News here yesterday reported just 
such a 'sting' by VISA. The restaurant blamed VISA. VISA, of course, blamed the 
restaurant. Either way, you will be the victim so be warned before you 
use it. Don't give any VISA gift cards to friends you value either.

cards are generally a scam. Governments had to intervene to stop the 'fees' that 
quickly made gift cards totally worthless. This latest VISA gimmick amounts to 
another pricey 'fee' to rip off your friend for 20% of what you planned to give 
him/her. MC is likely doing the same. If you use gift cards at all, investigate 
beforehand to ensure that there are NO fees of any kind, that your friend will 
receive the full amount that you have paid out. You may well be stunned. Some 
companies are very honourable; many are not. Get to know the honourable ones; 
shun the crooks.

Cash or a cheque is by far your safest choice. No 
gimmicks, fees, or other cheating with either of those. The person gets exactly 
the amount you intended him/her to get. Blessings


_______________________________________________ REACT-LIST 
mailing list REACT-LIST at lists.reactintl.net 





        Posted by: "N4AOF" <n4aof at arrl.net>        

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