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Holiday Gift Card Spending To Reach $24 Billion

By: Mike Sachoff

Americans plan to spend an average of $145.61 on gift cards this holiday season, up from $139.91 last year, according to a new survey from the National Retail Federation (NRF), conducted by BIGresearch.

Total gift card spending is expected to reach $24.78 billion. The NRF says that gift cards remain the most requested holiday gift for the fourth year in a row.

This holiday season we expect Americans to gravitate toward both sale and non-sale items, including gift cards, which in recent years have been passed up for heavily discounted merchandise, said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay.

With people focusing less on price and more on value this holiday season, Americans may choose to buy gift cards due to their convenience and popularity among gift recipients.

Not only will more people purchase gift cards this holiday season, but the average amount spent on each card will increase as well ($41.48 vs. $39.80 last year). According to the survey, 77.3 percent of shoppers will buy at least one gift card.

When it comes to which gift cards people will buy this holiday season, most shoppers say they will give their friends or family members a gift card to a department store (39.2%) or restaurant (33.4%), but others will consider book stores (23.7%), electronics stores (19.0%), entertainment venues like the movies (14.1%) and even coffee shops (13.9%).

Gift cards serve as a blank check of sorts, giving the gift recipient free will to buy something they may have had their eye on for years, said Phil Rist, Executive Vice President, Strategic Initiatives, BIGresearch.

For some, gift cards are straight from the heart and among the most thoughtful gifts that a person can receive.

About the Author:
Mike is a staff writer for WebProNews. Visit WebProNews for the latest ebusiness news.

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