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Charity gift cards: great last-minute gifts for do-gooders

Got a minimalist on the gift list? Someone living simply who really doesn’t want anything for the holidays? Yep, they can be difficult… just ask my wife.

While baked goods or experiences can work well for this crowd, another option has sprung up over the past few years: charity gift cards. Just like the consumption-oriented versions, these cards allow you to purchase a certain amount of monetary value… which the recipient can then donate to a favorite charity. A few of the options here:

  • The Causes Charity Gift Card: A new offering by the Facebook app that allows you to support causes important to you, and recruit others. Springwise has a short write-up on their entry into this market.
  • The Charity Navigator Good Card: The granddaddy of charitable web portals offers its card in partnership with Network for Good.
  • The TisBest Card: TisBest claims the spot of the original charity gift card, and, like others, offer both electronic and physical cards (their plastic cards are 100% recycled). They also offer the option of customized images on the card.



As with any gift card purchase, it’s good to check the fine print on these… Consumer Reports published a run-down last year of some of the charges you may incur with these cards (and the ones listed above seem pretty transparent about these).

Given charity cards in the past? Or have other suggestions for charitable holiday gifts? Tell us about it…

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Image credit: Tisbest