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IronGate

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For those of you who issue your own gift certficates, how do you handle the remaining balance when the GC is used, but is worth more than the total bill? For example, if someone bought a GC for $500, but the recipient's bill came to $300, would you make them keep the balance on the GC or refund the cash? Would your answer change if the balance were a smaller figure? Where's the breaking point between maintaining the balance and refunding?
 

JunieBJones (JBJ)

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Almost seems like you would need to issue a new gc for the remaining balance. I would not give back cash, at all.
 

agoodman

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I would always state that it has no cash value and cannot be exchanged for cash. If it was just a small amount, maybe - as a gesture of goodwill. Or perhaps give something from your gift shop if you have one.
Remember you may have encountered cc fees when the purchaser paid for the GC, so you need to take these costs into consideration.
 

EmptyNest

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NO CASH BACK. You are the one to lose on this. Just deduct the amount on the certificate and write something like: Balance Remaining: $000. IN INK!!!:)
GC's should state, not redeemable for cash or similar.
 

Don Draper

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This rarely happens, but when it has I will reissue another GC for the difference, or allow them to use the balance towards items in our gift shop (mugs, ornaments, etc.)...this is what they usually end up doing.
After all the hoopla this week with GC's I am going to change our system to only flat dollar amonts (no "Two night stay in the Jones Room, etc.) and have no expiry at all. My ideal would be if we sold a ton of $100 GC's 'cause then everyone redeeming them would still be putting something of their own $$ into the experience, which seems to go better for us.
The peeps with the expired GC from yesterday were very stand-offish once again this morning so not sure if something happened last night or not, but she is sitting at the breakfast table extolling the virtues of a different B&B they stayed at in a nearby area. Whee!
 

Morticia

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If the balance is above $40 we reissue the GC with the new balance. $40 and below we give them change. Why $40? it seemed like a good number. Enough to put a dent in the next stay.
 

Morticia

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This rarely happens, but when it has I will reissue another GC for the difference, or allow them to use the balance towards items in our gift shop (mugs, ornaments, etc.)...this is what they usually end up doing.
After all the hoopla this week with GC's I am going to change our system to only flat dollar amonts (no "Two night stay in the Jones Room, etc.) and have no expiry at all. My ideal would be if we sold a ton of $100 GC's 'cause then everyone redeeming them would still be putting something of their own $$ into the experience, which seems to go better for us.
The peeps with the expired GC from yesterday were very stand-offish once again this morning so not sure if something happened last night or not, but she is sitting at the breakfast table extolling the virtues of a different B&B they stayed at in a nearby area. Whee!.
InnsiderInfo said:
The peeps with the expired GC from yesterday were very stand-offish once again this morning so not sure if something happened last night or not, but she is sitting at the breakfast table extolling the virtues of a different B&B they stayed at in a nearby area. Whee!
She probably got an earful from her daughter...
Whenever I hear that sort of thing going on, I jump in...'What did you like most about X inn?' or 'Yes, they are lovely people, we're good friends.' Whether it hurts me or helps me, I don't know but I don't like the idea that another guest is mad at me and is going to try to hurt my business in that fashion. We get enough guests here who 'try all the B&B's' that it's bound to happen that they'll stay somewhere else next time anyway.
What I won't let them do is run down another inn in front of me.
 

Don Draper

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This rarely happens, but when it has I will reissue another GC for the difference, or allow them to use the balance towards items in our gift shop (mugs, ornaments, etc.)...this is what they usually end up doing.
After all the hoopla this week with GC's I am going to change our system to only flat dollar amonts (no "Two night stay in the Jones Room, etc.) and have no expiry at all. My ideal would be if we sold a ton of $100 GC's 'cause then everyone redeeming them would still be putting something of their own $$ into the experience, which seems to go better for us.
The peeps with the expired GC from yesterday were very stand-offish once again this morning so not sure if something happened last night or not, but she is sitting at the breakfast table extolling the virtues of a different B&B they stayed at in a nearby area. Whee!.
InnsiderInfo said:
The peeps with the expired GC from yesterday were very stand-offish once again this morning so not sure if something happened last night or not, but she is sitting at the breakfast table extolling the virtues of a different B&B they stayed at in a nearby area. Whee!
She probably got an earful from her daughter...
Whenever I hear that sort of thing going on, I jump in...'What did you like most about X inn?' or 'Yes, they are lovely people, we're good friends.' Whether it hurts me or helps me, I don't know but I don't like the idea that another guest is mad at me and is going to try to hurt my business in that fashion. We get enough guests here who 'try all the B&B's' that it's bound to happen that they'll stay somewhere else next time anyway.
What I won't let them do is run down another inn in front of me.
.
I was in the other room when I first heard her mentioning the other breakfast. She then went on to mention XY Famous Person who had stayed at that Inn and luckily for us the same person had stayed with us so I was able to throw that out there for the rest of the room. And we do happen to be good friends with the owners at the other Inn (it is not all that close, about an hour from us) so I mentioned that as well, and how much I love her Belgian waffle recipe (which I do!).
This woman seems the type to just keep talking no matter what so I don't think necessarily she was slamming us by talking about the other B&B. The folks around them finished up and headed off so then they did too. I asked if they needed anything for the day and hoped they had a great one...they still don't seem overly friendly but I've done all I can so I'm not going to worry about it.
 

gillumhouse

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I sell a GC for a package or a room night. If it is redeemed after the rates go up - so be it. I do not and will not run it as a cc purchase. Send me a check for the amount plus tax. If I lose the sale - oh well. I had the money when I needed it. THAT is what matters to me. Again, I do not sell hundreds of GCs either. I am in Podunk!! A lovely Podunk to be sure but still not exactly on the beaten path.
Last year, I had a 1-week booking for 2 rooms that was in jeopardy because a governor was refusing to sign the budget in a battle with his legislature and they were State workers - no budget, no pay checks - and there was a possibility of a 3 month standoff. I said come anyway and I will give invoices. One had a credit card and said charge it but the other did not. I gave her an invoice and as I expected, she sent me the money in the middle of winter when I needed it the most. And yes, I did know her sort of(through her sister) but the offer was also made to her co-worker who I did not know. She appreciated that I would offer it to her. One advantage to being in Podunk, I do not get much in the line of PITA and scammers.
In view of this thread, I am going to adjust the paid certificates AND the donated to read void if a reservation is made and cancelled. I do keep an Excel spreadsheet of my certificates.
 

JunieBJones (JBJ)

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I was handed a gift certificate for a very expensive spa day at the place on our corner. The recipient couldn't make it and it expires Nov 1st. I can't make it by then either.
I called and due to the fact they have to schedule me in, the actually suggested NEXT WEEK so I got off without having to request an extension on the GC.
DH just walked in and I told him. He said, and I quote "They already have the money on the GC, what difference does the date make?" I wanted to share that in light of this thread. Perhaps we need to be a bit more giving if it is not putting us out to extend it. (Esp since in many states you really are not allowed to put an expiry date on them anyway). I think it is reasonable to extend it a month or two - not 3 years!
Edited to say Oops wrong thread, same subject almost...
 

egoodell

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I was handed a gift certificate for a very expensive spa day at the place on our corner. The recipient couldn't make it and it expires Nov 1st. I can't make it by then either.
I called and due to the fact they have to schedule me in, the actually suggested NEXT WEEK so I got off without having to request an extension on the GC.
DH just walked in and I told him. He said, and I quote "They already have the money on the GC, what difference does the date make?" I wanted to share that in light of this thread. Perhaps we need to be a bit more giving if it is not putting us out to extend it. (Esp since in many states you really are not allowed to put an expiry date on them anyway). I think it is reasonable to extend it a month or two - not 3 years!
Edited to say Oops wrong thread, same subject almost....
We issue our GC with no expiration date (I think that is the Virginia requirement anyway or you have to send the state the money) but we do put a one year protection against any increases.
This way if they show up 5 years down the road, or if we sell the inn, the innkeeper is protected.
We don't have too many out since we are in wine country which is a destination and we sell more of the tours than the B&B actually.
We don't do it for increments - just either the suite, suite and tour, or tour by itself. Full amount (weekend rate) since they have no expiration date.
We ask they mail it in to confirm the reservation. Regular cancellation policies apply.
Of course we've only been open a year and anything could blow this whole setup apart. So far it's worked...
Riki
 
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