We are huge, HUGE advocates of bidding on gift cards on penny auction sites. For what it’s worth, we believe that gift cards are going to consistently give you the best value for your money AND are actually attainable if you approach it right.
On this page, we discuss the mathematical reasons why we love gift cards so much and we suggest you review it for the full reason. Quickly though, gift cards in smaller denominations ($25 or lower) are not highly pursued so the competition is lower. If you add them up, you can get some decent dollars adding up there!
Also, gift cards are going to help you the most in your daily life. You can buy gas and groceries with them.
We also note that there are a few different kind of gift card penny auction bidders out there. The first type of gift card penny auction bidder are those who bid in hopes of getting a good deal on something they are going to use anyway. Then, there are those who are going after the gift cards to get at a lower price and then resell them later at a profit.
Despite the different types of bidders, the goal is the same: to get the gift cards for the lowest possible bid price. These cards are attainable, but don’t get lulled into thinking they’re a super easy target.
What Are the Best Gift Card Penny Auctions?
It would actually be hard to find a penny auction site that didn’t offer gift cards in their auctions. At the end of the day, penny auction sites love gift cards. They are incredibly easy to keep in their inventory because they are small and are easy to ship. They are also big draws to people who want them to resell or to get them for good deals.
But before you go nuts, there are few requirements of these sites that we feel are very important:
“Your Pick” Gift Card Options
So these gift card auctions are the type where the winner gets to choose the type of card that they want. The price and category is set, but the particulars come in the location where the gift card is valid. For example, if you win a $25 Gas Station Gift Card Auction, you can pick which gas station you want. Ditto for something like a restaurant. Let’s say you win the $50 restaurant gift card, then you can choose to hit Chili’s or the Cheesecake Factory!
The advantage is that you clearly get to choose the type of card you get. It’s really not a bad deal at all. Quibids and HappyBidDay both offer this type of auction a great deal.
“Price Limit Gift Cards”
This is a great way to make sure that you don’t lose your shirt in some auctions. Penny auctions can set what they call a price limit on their auctions. Quite simply put, it means that the winner will, at most, pay a pre-set price. This is a good thing for gift card auctions because it can actually controls the total owed by the bidder.
On the other end, if the price is not preset, the winner can actually end up paying more for the gift card than what it’s worth (after the cost of the bid is calculated in). This can happen in both cases, but with the price limit auctions it’s much, much easier to figure out when to stop bidding.
“Buy it Now” Auctions
Basically, a “buy it now” feature makes it so that any losing bidder can purchase the item they were bidding on for full retail price. In doing so, you are refunded the bids and the costs of the bids. This is a HUGE way to mitigate your bidding risk. If you’re going to go get a gift card anyway, participating in a buy it now” gift card auction may be an excellent way to go. If you get it at a reduced price, great! If you don’t, no harm, no foul.
We truly recommend that you only participate in “buy it now” gift card auctions. If you lose, you may pay a bit more for the card than normal (after shipping), but at least you’re not going to be taken for a great loss. Quibids and DealDash are great auction sites to visit for this type of bidding.
If you stick with the penny auction sites that offer free shipping (click here for a list), then you’re going to be in even better shape. Your chance of losing money on these sites when you bid on “buy it now” and price limit auctions are really pretty low if you combine them with free shipping. Obviously there will be high competition in these settings, but there’s very little downside.