Starbucks gift cards can be a great gift, but some people allow the funds to languish in their mobile app. A woman urged her followers to use their unused Starbucks gift cards soon to prevent the company from reaching record profits.
The video featured TikTok user Shar Henley (@sharhenley_) who revealed how Starbucks receives most of their profit: Unused gift cards. “In fact, the company is gonna prefer if you stay out of the store and let the merch collect dust because it’s no loss for themselves,” she told her 51,000 followers. In addition, she recommended using any reward points you’ve collected. Furthermore, she shared other alternatives. There was a possibility to trade in the gift card for cash.
Another suggestion was donating coffee or merchandise to women’s shelters and food banks. In addition, giving gift cards to charity. The main way to fight against this was was tipping baristas. “So, gift cards, using up all of your gift cards and rewards, and not spending a penny more out of pocket seriously helps this effort,” she said. “Spend them all before the end of the year.”
Viewers’ methods for combating this
The Daily Dot reached out to Henley via Instagram direct message and TikTok comment and Starbucks via press email. The video garnered over 90,000 views where viewers shared different ways to use the gift cards.
“You can use them to tip workers!” one viewer wrote.
“I have over 13000 points. I’ve been cashing in on them now every day,” a second shared.
“You can also load the gift card onto the app, then call customer service and ask for your app balance to be returned to your bank account,” a third stated.
“I was told you can ‘pay it forward’! So the $ will just go towards whoever comes next,” a fourth commented.
“spend a little less than what’s on the card so you can use the rest for your tip (then tip more cash if it’s not enough),” a fifth said.
Money made so far
So far, Starbucks profits have gone up by 11% and globally 8% and a large chunk of revenue does come from unused gift cards. “A stunning $1.64 billion in unused gift cards, prepaid cards, and mobile app balances is a lesser-known component of the company’s financials. However, only some of this money is used immediately; in other cases, it is never utilized. Starbucks classifies these unpaid sums as ‘stored value card liability,’ which has ballooned to an astounding $1.64 billion. This statistic illustrates Starbucks’ duty to offer products and services to consumers who have paid in advance,” per Chris Suazo.