Not So Happy: Negative Changes Coming To Happy Gift Cards Excluding 3rd Party Gift Card Purchases

Two of the main reasons why Happy gift cards have proven to be so popular is because they’re frequently available at a discount somewhere and the fact that they can be used at some stores to purchase third party gift cards.

Unfortunately MetaBank has added some unwelcome wording that could make this harder, excluding the purchase of third party gift cards using Happy cards.

Here’s some wording from their website (my bolding):

You may use your Card at brick-and-mortar locations in the United States of the merchants whose logos appear on the Card. Online redemption may not be available for all merchants. Each time you use your Card, you authorize us to reduce the value available on your Card by the amount of the transaction. Your Card cannot be: (1) redeemed for its cash value; (2) used to obtain cash or other gift cards in any transaction; (3) used for illegal transactions; (4) used to make foreign transactions; (5) used to pay credit card, charge card, or similar accounts with the merchants; or (6) used for purchases where recurring payments may occur, such as subscriptions, memberships, rentals, etc.

DDG noticed similar wording excluding gift card purchases, although I couldn’t find the specific webpage where he found his text.

Either way, this is an unwelcome development. That’s because it’s been possible to use certain brands of Happy gift cards at Home Depot, Bed Bath & Beyond and Buy Buy Baby to buy third party gift cards either for personal use or reselling.

There’s no indication that this is being hard coded into the registers at those stores so it should still be possible to buy gift cards. If the cashier asks to see the card though, they’d be entitled to decline it as a form of payment. When I used a Happy gift card in a Bed Bath & Beyond store last year, the cashier didn’t want to accept it, but their supervisor was happy accepting it provided it could be run as credit rather than as a gift card (it could). I’m not convinced that supervisor would be as amenable nowadays, so be aware of the potential unloading risk if stocking up on these gift cards during sales.

h/t DDG

About Stephen Pepper

Stephen Pepper is on a 5 year, 50 state road trip with his wife Shae and their dog Truffles. Finding opportunities to earn miles and points is one of the ways they can afford to do this, so he'll try to help you do the same for your own travels.

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rick b
rick b

Forget gift cards, I’m more intrigued by this “(5) used to pay credit card, charge card, or similar accounts with the merchants;” So theoretically you could pay your co-branded CC bill at the store using the happy cards?

Something tells me we’ll see a post from milesperday bragging about another scumbag secret scheme that just died.

Stacking Points
Stacking Points

I think by ‘scumbag’, you meant to write ‘genius’. #jealousy


I still don’t understand the play here; maybe that is it rick b. Otherwise, you are just waiting for sales/offers on the happy cards, then buying VGCs or reselling GC? Doesn’t seem like much to get worked up about without that MS vig hidden in there somewhere.


I bought one two days ago for the 8x fuel rewards points and had no problem today turning the card into VGCs at HD.


[…] I am pretty much done with gift card MSing crap, I ain’t got the time! It looks like same old deal killing and devaluing mode is still going in that front too: Negative Changes Coming To Happy Gift Cards Excluding 3rd Party Gift Card Purchases. […]


[…] I’m just about accomplished with present card MSing crap, I ain’t bought the time! It appears to be like like standard deal killing and devaluing mode remains to be moving into that entrance too: Negative Changes Coming To Happy Gift Cards Excluding 3rd Party Gift Card Purchases. […]