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I'm not complaining, but...

December 25th, 2012 at 11:03 am

As you know if you follow my blog, I'm a physician and do a lot of medical surveys. These pay well but lately, one aspect of doing them has become a bit of a nuisance. They used to almost all pay by check. Very simple. Deposit it into my account and I'm done.

More and more of them, however, are now paying with prepaid Visa cards. I used to get one of those occasionally and it wasn't a big deal. I would just stick it in my wallet and use it at the grocery store usually. I don't want to sound ungrateful, but now it is getting kind of annoying. In the past week alone, I've gotten three of them: one for $48, one for $100, and one for $350. That's in addition to others that I've gotten previously and not used yet.

My dresser now has a little stack of Visa cards. Not that it is a bad thing to have the money, but I'd rather not have it all sitting on my dresser both for safety reasons and liquidity reasons. Also, the cards do have expiration dates so not only do I need to keep track of which cards I've used and what balances remain on them, I also need to organize the order the cards get used to avoid having them expire. When you're getting 2 or 3 of these cards per week, that becomes a bit of a challenge.

I'm guessing that for some reason, issuing these cards is cheaper and more convenient for the companies than sending checks, but for the recipients, it can be a bit of a pain.

8 Responses to “I'm not complaining, but...”

  1. North Georgia Gal Says:

    My bank will cash them out for me. I just have to know how much is on the card and get exactly that much. it is like a cash advance on a credit card.

  2. disneysteve Says:

    Do they charge any fee for doing that? I'll have to check on that. Thanks.

  3. Swimgirl Says:

    Great idea, NGG! I never know what to do with those, either!

  4. scfr Says:

    We should all have your problems ... [Insert rolling eyes icon here]!

    My suggestions would be to:
    Put them in your wallet where you put cash, in the front, so that they are the first thing your hand touches when you go in to your wallet.

    Also, can you give them to your wife to use? What about your daughter for allowance?

    I think the most important thing is to use them up as quickly as possible.

  5. disneysteve Says:

    "Put them in your wallet where you put cash, in the front, so that they are the first thing your hand touches when you go in to your wallet."

    I hardly ever spend cash but you're right. I keep them in the front pocket of my wallet in front of my credit card so I grab the prepaid cards first.

  6. North Georgia Gal Says:

    My bank (Suntrust) does not charge a fee for doing this.

  7. -Jerry- Says:

    It sounds like the pharma and/or insurance companies have turned their remuneration operations over to my late Aunt Marie. She was incredibly fond of the prepaid Visa or gift cards... but I never had enough of them to stack on my dresser! Wink Nice to have the insurance of some backup cash, but you are right, the expiration dates would be a pain in the neck. I'd definitely prefer a check, too. Happy New Year!

  8. Gailete Says:

    I realize that this is an older post Steve, so not sure if you have solved this problem adequately, but have you tried reselling them at those sites that sell gift cards at a discount? I'm not sure if they take those kind of cards or not. I didn't realize until I got a $350 Amazon gift card (that I could only spend at Amazon) how hard it is to spend when you are 'frugal'. I really tried to budget that card. Thought I had it all used up, but when I got my last order, they sent me three of the same thing as they were all shrink wrapped together. I sent the 2 that I didn't need back with what I thought was a clear message to them, they refunded the shipping back to them and then refunded me the cost of one of the items I had purchased (which I still had but they assumed it was the one I sent back). So after buying one diamond shaped rotary ruler and getting 3, sending two back (that I hadn't paid for, it was a Amazon mistake) they ended up crediting me over $20+ which at that point I gave up trying to give them back what was theirs before they give me $100 or something equally silly! So I still have money to spend on that card after 4 months of having it! Smile I like the idea of doing surveys again and if I ever find the time, should try getting into them again.

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