Gift cards under scrutiny

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasury David Bradbury MP announced at the Consumers 2011 conference on 7 June 2011 that the Commonwealth Consumer Affairs Advisory Council will undertake an examination of consumer problems in relation to gift cards. In announcing the inquiry Mr Bradbury noted

As the popularity of gift cards has grown, so too have complaints from consumers about the terms and conditions that are attached to them, particularly expiry dates. As a product that is traded as a consumer item but that has the underlying properties of a financial product, gift cards have presented some interesting issues for regulators and policy makers. This CCAAC inquiry will look at how we can better manage these issues and ensure that consumers are getting the product they thought they paid for.

The topic of gift cards was discussed at the 3 June 2011 Ministerial Council on Consumer Affairs where it was referred to CCAAC – here is a link to the communiqué from the MCCA meeting.

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