How to make the most out of gift cards this year

ABC News' consumer correspondent Becky Worley breaks down how to maximize savings using gift cards you may have received over the holidays.
3:13 | 12/26/17

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Transcript for How to make the most out of gift cards this year
I hope you guys don't have gifts you have to return, but if you do, now that the presents are unwrapped you know the gives you fell in love with and those you can live without so Becky Worley is back with the easy ways to exchange what you don't need plus how to maximize your gift cards so, Becky, welcome back for the third time. Can't get enough of you this morning. I mean, you're a big deal. Would you say this is a watershed year for items bought online but can be returned in the brick and mortar store? So many items and news flash, Paula, we hate returning things purchased online. It's like a horrible arts and crafts project that even worse culminates in a trip to the post office. Retailers sense an opportunity and would love for you to come into their physical store and return things, so they're making returns a lot easier. Let's start with Walmart. Their app now lets you do all the heavy lifting of a return on your phone before you even leave home. When you get to the store you pop into an expedited returns line and scan a code on your phone, you're done. Magic. Some Amazon purchases canning returned to whole foods and Kohl's physical stores. You have to go to the Amazon website or use the app to initiate a return and they'll tell you if it can returned in store. A lot of other retailers want you to bring the invoice from your online purchases like Macy's, H&M and target. You'll wait in line but you'll be able to return and then shop, bing, bing, bing. Yeah, that is what they want you to do, bring you in and hopefully go shopping. So we know that gift cards were hugely popular but historically they go unused. So how can we maximize them. Two big tips here, if you received a gift card from a credit card company, not one tied to a specific store, but one of those ones that has a credit card logo on it, use it immediately. Groceries, gas, your next purchases, that's because after a certain amount of time the bank or credit card company starts charging you a little monthly fee that eats away the entire balance of the card eventually. Yeah, that's a real problem. One other gift card trick that works for any card, take a picture of it including the I.D. Number and P.I.N. Underneath that silver strip so if you're out and about shopping without it, you can use that picture and try and use it for your purchase. A little trick. I love that. Going back to the stores wanting to bring you in trying to incentivize you to get into the brick and mortar stores so how are sales stacking up today. They're okay. Let's go through it quickly. Macy's has an extra 20% off all sale items or 10 bucks off $25 or more. Kohl's, 15. Shutterfly, 50% off everything. They're not revolutionary but okay. We bought a record amount of goods so they're not putting on fire sales to try to dump clearance. If you have mad money, go shopping. That is a bit of good news that retail sales were up, that's good for the economy. Becky, come back a fourth time. See if we can fit you back in.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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