Consolidate Starbucks gift cards to save wallet space

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One of the inconveniences of a rapidly changing credit card strategy is the inevitable bloated, “George Costanza” wallet one will likely end up with. The holiday season does little to alleviate this space crunch when you are looking for a home for those Starbucks gift cards you received in your stocking.

Starbucks provides an easy online interface to consolidate your gift card balances onto a single card to save that precious wallet share. The My Starbucks Rewards program accumulates stars on registered cards only so it makes sense to consolidate all your balances onto one card while you are already registering your cards online. I am sure this has been around for awhile but I feel this could be helpful for some at this time of year.

Consolidate Starbucks gift cards

1. Head to Starbucks

2. Sign into your account. Register if you don’t already have one.

3. Click on My Cards

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4. Use ‘Add a Card’ to add all of your newly received Starbucks Gift Cards one by one.

5. Choose the Gift Card that you are currently using to accumulate stars. If you are not collecting stars in one place, select the card with the coolest design! This is the card you will transfer all your funds onto.

6. Click on a card along the top with a balance and choose Transfer Funds on the left tab.

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7. Select ‘Transfer From’. The ‘Transfer To’ option requires the number on the card to be typed in again while this option gives a more convenient dropdown.

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8. Select your chosen card from the dropdown and follow the prompts to transfer the balance.

9. Repeat steps 6-8 until all your balances are on one card.

10. Cut up the other cards and let your wallet breath.

I was able to quickly consolidate all my small balances onto a single card. I actually found that several of my older cards had orphan balances that I was able to transfer onto my new card.

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About alex

Alex loves to travel and does so a lot. Logging 100,000 flight miles each year over the past 4 years, Alex uses points and miles to power his passion. Alex is continuously striving to experience the far reaches of the globe. In his day job, Alex is a Management Consultant frequently on the road advising Technology organizations. I love thinking about, reading about, and talking about all things travel. Feel free to reach me at pmmalex@gmail.com

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Comments

  1. You could also use your Starbucks Card with an iPhone or Droid, and cut cards out completely. You pay with your phone, just like a mobile boarding pass, and your stars and balance are tracked online.

  2. If the cards have at least $5 on them, there’s a better way to do it that actually earns you stars. Register all the cards you want to transfer balances from first (obviously as well as the card you want to transfer balances TO–we’ll call it your gold card for the sake of argument). Make sure they have at least $5 on them. If you want to be super helpful to the barista, jot down the balance available on them on a post it or something to each card (but if you don’t do this, it’s pretty simple for them to look it up on the POS in store).

    Go into a Starbucks when it’s quiet (late afternoon or evening is a good time). Ask the barista at the register to help you get all the cards onto your gold card. They’ll be able to transfer your balances by processing a reload on their POS–but it acts just like a regular purchase for the card you’re loading from, so you get a star towards your next free drink or food for each card you empty (because you’ve made sure they’re all registered and all cards on your account aggregate the stars). Say that you have six orphan gift cards laying around, that’s halfway to a free drink or food (assuming you’re gold, of course). It does take a little more time than the online method but if you’re going to Starbucks during a quiet time anyway, it’s not a bad payoff. The baristas will likely be happy to help you as long as there’s no line as each transaction counts as a customer, which ups their labor allotment. Just make sure to be nice and slightly apologetic about it and maybe throw a buck into the tip jar (but you were going to do that anyway, for your drink, right?)

  3. Good tip; or, you could just transfer the balance to your Starbucks Gold card. All you have to do to qualify for the Gold card is use your registered (see their website) Starbucks (gift) card thirty times within one year. Then, you get free drinks every dozen purchases. All and all, it’s a good deal. Ultimately, folks should make their purchases using only one Starbucks card to qualify.

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  5. I have 3 stars already on one gift card and 10 stars on the another gift card, how can I combine them so I can have 13stars in only one card ?

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