Gift Cards: How Long Do They Last?

Gift cards are a great way to show your loved ones you care, but it's important to know the rules and regulations that come with them. Federal law offers protection for gift cards, ensuring that they cannot expire until at least five years after the date of purchase. However, if not used within 12 months, inactivity or service charges can be charged to the card every month, reducing its value. It's important to be aware of these fees and when they will take effect so that you and your loved ones can use the full value of their cards.

AARP Rewards is here to make your next steps easy, rewarding and fun. When considering buying gift cards for your grandchildren for the holidays, make sure you know the lifespan of a gift card. The gift card must be used as soon as possible, or fees could reduce its value. Under federal law, a gift card cannot expire less than five years after the date of purchase.

These fees must be reported to the user in advance and no more than one fee can be charged per month. So, make sure that you and your grandchildren know when the fees will take effect so that they can use the full value of their cards. AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that allows people to choose how they live as they age. Javascript must be activated to use this site. Please enable Javascript in your browser and try again.

Marcos Furno
Marcos Furno

Award-winning travel specialist. Lifelong tv nerd. Passionate bacon advocate. Lifelong tv practitioner. Proud internet practitioner.