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Ask a Reporter: I tried to return two gift cards and the store said I couldn't
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Ask a Reporter: I tried to return two gift cards and the store said I couldn't

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Question: I recently bought two gift cards to thank people who had helped me. They refused to take them. I took them back to the store where I bought them, but they refused to take them back. Can they do that?


Answer: Yes, they can. Once a gift card has been activated, it cannot be deactivated. At the bottom of the gift card receipt, it says “No Refunds.”

Lechelle Yates, a spokeswoman for the Better Business Bureau of Central and Northwest North Carolina, explains how the gift card works.

“Gift cards are a way retailers allow consumers to give money to their friends to shop at a retail store or restaurant, gas station or other locations — both online and in the brick-and-mortar variety.

“They’re basically a substitute for cash but they have to be used at a particular place. You load money onto the card and the gift card recipient, or you, can then spend the money at the designated location.

“There is an exception — branded cards, which can be used anywhere the brand of the card is accepted. For example, if you have a branded card with a Visa logo on it, you can use it to buy items anywhere Visa is accepted.

“It’s nice the consumer wanted to thank the two people who so generously helped her, but it is incumbent on consumers to understand the stores policies on returns before they make a purchase of any type. Hopefully, the consumer can use the gift cards themselves at the stores or perhaps give them as gifts in the future.”

Q: On certain nights “Jeopardy” is replaced by sports programming. Is there another channel where it can be seen?


A: Larry Audas, the president and general manager at WFMY-Channel 2, said that the show is still shown, but at a different time.

“For clarity, Jeopardy is most often not fully ‘pre-empted,’ which would mean it did not air.

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“Rather, from time to time, Jeopardy is pre-empted from its usual time period, but aired later. Most often that time would be in the early morning hours. “

Most viewers would use their DVR to record the show and watch it at a later time, Audas said.

“Jeopardy is not delayed often, but we are in a month of pre-season Carolina Panthers football where that will happen two or three times.

“WFMY News 2 is the official Jeopardy station in the Triad market where Jeopardy can be viewed both weekdays and weekends.”

Q: Are the $100 vaccine cash cards available to those of us who got the vaccine voluntarily without getting paid?


Answer: The short answer is no. But you can get a gift card for a lesser amount by driving someone else to get a COVID-19 vaccination.

Todd Luck, a communications specialist for Forsyth County, said that only people getting their first dose of the vaccine are eligible for the $100 incentive.

“But anyone 18 and over can get the $25 gift card for transporting someone to get their first dose,” Luck said.

Here’s the information from the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services.

“Adults who have already gotten their first COVID-19 vaccine dose can still get a $25 Summer Card by supporting others to get vaccinated by driving someone to get their first dose at a participating vaccination site.

“We encourage you to think about who in your community you could reach out to about getting vaccinated — talk to them about COVID-19 vaccination, help them find their spot for a vaccine, and then drive them to their appointment.”

— Melissa Hall, Winston-Salem Journal

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