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Spend $10 Cash or $20 Store Credit?


spend cash or store credit

So I have a little conundrum. My Xbox headset broke and I need a new one so I can talk to friends in California. Now I have a choice to make and the Mrs. said I am a huge waffler.


I checked on Amazon and found one for about $10 plus shipping. Not too bad.

Store Credit

I also have $32 store credit on my Gamestop card, but the same headset costs $20 at Gamestop.

What should I do? On one hand, I can support a local business by using my store credit and I wouldn’t have any cash outlay. Then again, Amazon has the cheaper price, but not much cheaper once you add shipping. I guess I could just put it in the cart and bundle it with some other purchase down the line to save on shipping.

I’m leaning toward Amazon right now because cheaper is cheaper. I have had the store credit for about a year, but I know I will use it sooner or later. Hmm… decisions, decisions.

Have you had to make this kind of decision? I know this is small, but what if it was a bigger amount like $100? If it was $100 and I have store credit or gift card, I would definitely use that instead of paying. I’d rather have $100 in my pocket.

What about you? What would you do in this situation?

Well, I’ll tell you what I did. I waffled for a few weeks and then I found my cordless phone headset! It worked with the Xbox and I didn’t have to buy anything. See, waffling is good when it comes to spending money.

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{ 22 comments… add one }
  • LifeAndMyFinances January 26, 2011, 4:12 am

    That actually is a tough call! I would have done some waffling myself! I think that since our budget is based on the activity in our bank account, and we are currently not allowing any frivilous spending, I would have used the store credit.

    Good to hear that you found a headset that works though! Bonus!

  • Kevin @ Thousandaire.com January 26, 2011, 5:58 am

    I’d have bought from Amazon, and I support your decision to hold onto that gamestop card. It seems like there hasn’t been a good video game in the last year, so there’s no reason to spend that money.

  • Darwin's Money January 26, 2011, 6:46 am

    I’d do Amazon since I’m lazy and it would save me a trip.

  • Buck Inspire January 26, 2011, 7:01 am

    I’d go Amazon, but would bundle it. Would feel like I’m not saving as much if I had to pay for shipping. Yeah save the gift card for better use then an overpriced headset. In the end, your waffling paid off! 🙂

  • retirebyforty January 26, 2011, 7:20 am

    When it comes to spending money, it’s best to wait. 🙂
    Wafflers of the world unite!

  • MoneyCone January 26, 2011, 9:21 am


  • Marc January 26, 2011, 9:22 am

    I would have purchased from Amazon and if Amazon was the one fulfilling the order 2-day shipping would be free. Amazon has a great program called Amazon Mom (my wife is registered and it’s free) and they offer free Amazon Prime membership (for one year) so long as you purchase baby related items. That is soooo easy to do with a child under 1. They also have a subscribe & save program that has some fairly cheap everyday household items. I am really enjoying the free prime membership as items are shipped to my door step in two days, truly beats going to the store (or Costco) and waiting in line to purchase items.

    I am also a waffler as I have been looking at purchasing a watch for the past 6 months. I finally purchased one yesterday, of course from Amazon, with free two day shipping.

    • retirebyforty January 26, 2011, 6:44 pm

      Thanks for the tip! I’ll tell the Mrs. I’ve been buying quite a few things from Amazon lately, probably need to cut down a bit. Free shipping is not going to help.

      Angry at something? 🙂

  • everyday tips January 26, 2011, 11:27 am

    If it is the same quality headset, then go with Amazon for sure! I am sure you will find other ways to use that Game Stop card!

  • Aloysa January 26, 2011, 11:38 am

    Amazin is so much cheaper. Go with Amazon, save your credit for something else.

    • Aloysa January 26, 2011, 11:39 am

      I meant AmaZON. Where is the Edit button?! 🙂

      • retirebyforty January 26, 2011, 6:45 pm

        I need to move to Thesis soon. This theme is getting limited…
        Amazon is cool.

  • Will @ HackingTheBank.com January 26, 2011, 12:24 pm

    I agree with most of the others. I use Amazon for almost everything. If I have a gift card somewhere, I usually use it on items where Amazon doesn’t have a large price advantage. In this case, I’d save it to use on a video game. Amazon, at most, discounts a new video game by $4 when it’s released (assuming it’s expected to sell well). I’d use it then.

    • retirebyforty January 26, 2011, 6:46 pm

      Wow, Amazon is getting a lot of loves. I’m way behind in games so I get last year’s game for cheap now. 🙂

  • Crystal @ BFS January 26, 2011, 3:26 pm

    I’m with Darwin, I’m lazy and totally promote the use of Amazon, lol. 🙂

  • Roshawn @ Watson Inc January 26, 2011, 8:06 pm

    I would probably use Amazon as well but would try to time the purchase so that I could get free shipping without spending money that I wouldn’t normally spend. This seems perfectly reasonable to me, and I’ve done it before too.

    • retirebyforty January 27, 2011, 12:17 pm

      That’s probably what I would have ended up doing. I put things in the cart all the time just to take them out a few weeks later. 🙂
      Delay gratification is a good thing in finance.

  • 101 Centavos January 27, 2011, 3:35 am

    I’m with you on waffling.
    Had the other headset not come along though, I would have gone with Amazon. The $32 local store credit has already been spent.

  • The Money Watch January 27, 2011, 4:26 pm

    Do you have a bluetooth you can use? I don’t play Xbox but I want to say that I heard something about being able to use your bluetooth as a headset. . .best of luck!

    • retirebyforty January 27, 2011, 10:43 pm

      I do have a bluetooth, but I don’t know how to pair it with xbox. That’s what the internet is for! I’ll check it out, thanks for the tip.

  • Joe Plemon January 28, 2011, 6:30 am

    I love the story behind the story: how waffling pays off. As a fellow waffler, I am greatly encouraged. 🙂

  • Deidre @ TransFormX January 28, 2011, 3:09 pm

    Definately a tough call! I would have probably went towards Amazon and bundled it with somthing else I needed since they carry everything under the sun now 😉

    Good fix with the cordless headset too! I liked that 🙂

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