As Father’s Day Approaches, U.S. Shoppers Turn to Gift Cards

An estimated $2 billion will be spent on Father’s Day gift cards this year

By Kiní Schoop, Director of Marketing Communications

Father's Day Gift Cards

Don’t let your Father’s Day gifts end up stockpiled in the top dresser drawer.

As Father’s Day will soon be upon us I find myself reflecting on the many gifts I have given my father these past 30+ years: cigars, neckties, monogrammed handkerchiefs, cufflinks, dress hats, etc. These items read like a shopping list from a vintage clothing shop. I also recall the day I found out that he had been stockpiling some of my gifts in his top dresser drawer. I suppose a man only needs so many monogrammed handkerchiefs.

The discovery of my father’s surplus drawer did not upset me. Frankly I was glad to know what not to give him. For as much as I thought I knew my father well, buying him a gift that he’d be sure to enjoy was always a difficult process.

Well, it is good to know that I am not alone. According to a recent CashStar survey a whole lot of Americans are unsure what to buy dad. We surveyed more than 1,000 shoppers nationwide and found that dads rank as the number one hardest family member to shop for – more than moms, siblings, spouses, grandparents, children and stepparents.

So when it comes to Father’s Day, many shoppers (including yours truly) are turning to gift cards for their tough-to-buy-for dads. This year, the National Retail Federation expects Father’s Day spending to reach a record high of $14.3 billion, with approximately $2 billion to be spent on gift cards. Fifty-five percent of CashStar survey respondents reported having given a gift card as a Father’s Day gift. What was even more interesting is that 36 percent of that group have given a gift card every year for the past several years.

We also learned that more than 40 percent of people purchase Father’s Day gifts every year. The reasons for showing appreciation include:

Fathers Day Gift Cards Graph

Most Popular Categories
But what kind of gift cards are people buying for their dads? We found that the most popular categories for purchases of Father’s Day gift cards are restaurants (39 percent), home improvement (28 percent), sports/outdoor (25 percent), department stores (23 percent), electronics (23 percent), and my dad’s favorite: movies/entertainment (20 percent).

As it so happens a number of our clients in these categories are leveraging the CashStar Commerce platform to power gift card promotions for Father’s Day, including:

  • Brooks Brothers – Beginning June 11 through June 19, receive a $25 eGift Card reward for $150 or more spent in eGift Cards
  • – Through June 20, receive a $20 Shutterfly code for $100 or more spent in eGift Cards
  • Kona Grill – Through June 19, receive a $10 ecard for every $50 worth of plastic or digital gift cards
  • Nordstrom and Nordstrom Rack – are offering a personalized Father’s Day gifting option by enabling shoppers to upload their child’s artwork onto an eGift Card
  • Pei Wei – Through June 26, receive one $5 Bonus Card with the purchase of $25 or more in Pei Wei eGift Cards
  • P.F. Chang’s – Through June 19, receive a $10 P.F. Chang’s Bonus Card for every $50 purchased in P.F. Chang’s eGift Cards
  • Shula’s – Through June 19, receive a $25 bonus card for $150 or more in eGift Cards
  • Studio Movie Grill – Through June 23, receive $5 ebonus card for every $30 gift card purchased online at
  • TGI Fridays – Through June 30, receive a $10 Bonus Bites Card for every $50 worth of eGift Cards purchased
  • Tony Roma’s – Through June 21, receive $15 in Roma Bucks for every $50 in eGift cards purchased
  • Check out our site for many other great gift card promotions that your dad will be sure to enjoy!

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