The one and only exception to Clark Howard’s ‘no gift card’ rule

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A selfie of Clark Howard that was uploaded to our Facebook page has led to confusion among his loyal viewers, listeners and readers — with some calling the money expert a hypocrite.

In the picture, Clark was holding a gift card that he got for 10% off during a one-day sale at Target.

Why Clark bought Target gift cards

If you’ve been following Clark for a while, you know that he hates gift cards because you take money that can be used anywhere and turn it into “fake money” that can only be used at one place.

There’s also the risk of restaurants and retailers going out of business. Clark issued this warning in November:

“There has never been a year that it has been more dangerous to receive or to give gift cards for restaurants and retailers. Both industries are having a terrible time right now.”

What was different about this past weekend at Target? The gift cards were being sold at a 10% discount. He was able to buy $300 worth of gift cards for $270.

Here’s how Clark explained the exception to his “no gift card” rule on the radio show:

“A gift card can be a good deal if you get bonus money. Joel of our crew got 50% bonus on a restaurant gift card recently, and my wife got 22% bonus on a restaurant gift card recently.”

One more thing: If you receive any gift cards for Christmas, don’t let them gather dust. The restaurant and retail industry is highly unstable. Use those gift cards quickly!

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