Now there is a much better option. An up-and-coming company called Friendgiftr allows you to swap your unwanted gift cards from one retailer to another. Friendgift works with 125 retailers, including Macys, Sephora, AMC, GAP, Starbucks, and Target. You can even divide up one card into multiple purchases at different retailers.
To get swapping privileges -- which is a perk unheard of in the gift card world -- you have to buy the card from Friendgiftr in the first place. So if you already have a crappy card, I can't help you. But if your birthday is coming up and you expect to receive cards as gifts, nudge your family and friends toward Friendgiftr. If you have cards to buy, check the site out.
Of course, these privileges come with a price. Each gift card you buy through Friendgiftr has a surcharge -- 99 cents for gift cards ranging from $10 to $50 and $1.99 for gift cards over $50. Still, that's not a bad price for an insurance policy to know that the recipient will be able to use the card.
To get attention, Friendgift is giving away a $25 gift card every week for all of 2010! It is also giving away a $100 gift card each month. To be eligible you can become a fan of its Facebook page, follow it on Twitter (@friendgiftr) or add its Facebook app to your page.