The rising use of gift cards by shoppers is unlocking greater spending potential in Scotland’s high streets, statistics show.
Research by the Gift Card & Voucher Association has found that people will, on average, spend 65% more than the value of any card they are gifted.
And, with the use of gift cards rising across Scotland, their importance as another way of shoppers being able to support businesses is being highlighted as part of the Scotland Loves Local campaign.
Scotland’s Towns Partnership is leading the drive for people to think local first this Christmas and beyond – whether that be while buying in person or online – as part of efforts to fuel the nation’s economic recovery from Covid-19 from its grassroots.
And, as everyone is urged to stay as local as possible, behave sensibly and follow all Scottish Government public health guidance while showing kindness to all shop staff and fellow shoppers, gift cards are being highlighted as an ideal way in which people can safely back businesses in their community.
Not only do they bring immediate income to businesses, but supporters hope they will lead to further spending when people take the time to redeem them.
Perth-based fintech Miconex has launched new Town and City Gift Cards in Aberdeen, the Falkirk district, Kirkcaldy and rural Scotland, taking its total number of local gift card programmes across Scotland to 17, and over 50 across the UK and Ireland.
Town and City Gift Card programmes work to lock in spend locally and drive local economic recovery. Over £2 million has been spent through the schemes since the launch of the first programme, the Perth Gift Card, in 2015.
The benefits of the scheme – giving people the chance to invest with local businesses by buying a local gift card to be spent across retail, hospitality, leisure and services – has been highlighted by the Scotland Loves Local campaign as it encourages people to show support for their towns and high streets in every way possible to help the nation’s recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic.
Miconex managing director Colin Munro, pictured left, said: “When you buy local, you can double the amount of money in your local economy. The popularity of multi-venue gift cards like Town and City Gift Cards is rising and represented 37.7% of all gift cards purchased in October.
“More than ever this year, people realise the importance of shopping local and because our local gift cards can be spent with a huge variety of businesses in a particular place or city, they offer a secure way to give the gift of choice whilst supporting your town or city.”
Town and City Gift Card programmes are also active in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Perth, Crieff, Arran, Elgin, Shawlands, Milngavie, East Ayrshire, East Lothian, Kirkwall, St. Andrews and Glasgow’s West End.
For more details, go to https://townandcitygiftcards.com/scotland