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Buy a gift card, get a freebie at these restaurants, businesses  1 Month ago

Source:   USA Today  

Gift cards make great gifts, especially when the card encourages your recipient to go out and have an experience instead of just buying more stuff. And you can find some great savings on restaurant gift cards right now.

Through the end of the year at many popular restaurant chains, when you buy a gift card, you can get an added bonus, which is basically like getting a free meal.

According to the National Retail Federation's annual survey, gift cards are the most popular item on wish lists for the 12th year in a row and 60% of those surveyed said that's what they asked for above clothing, accessories, books, movies, electronics, and more.

Just remember, the bonus cards and certificates usually can’t be used until January, and they have various expiration dates and exclusions. So be sure to read the fine print before you buy.

We have rounded up the best gift card deals for you so if gift cards are on your holiday shopping list, why not get a little something for yourself while you’re at it? Plus, find other gift ideas for everyone on your list at gifts.usatoday.com.

Unless otherwise noted, these offers are available through Dec. 31 while supplies last. Some offers are only available online, while others are available at participating locations and other conditions may also apply.

Abuelo’s Mexican Restaurant: For every $50 in gift cards purchased, get a $10 bonus card to redeem Jan. 1-March 31.

Applebee's: Through Jan. 6, buy $50 in gift cards online or at participating restaurants and get a $10 bonus card, which expires March 3.

Bad Daddy's Burger Bar: With a $50 gift card purchase, get a $10 promo card.

Bahama Breeze: Through Jan. 2, buy $50 in gift cards and get two $10 bonus cards to redeem Jan. 1-March 31, excluding Feb. 14.

Baker's Square: Buy a $25 gift card and get a $5 bonus card to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 8.

bd's Mongolian Grill: Buy $25 in gift cards, get a $5 bonus card or buy $50 in gift cards and get a $15 bonus card. The bonus cards can be redeemed Jan. 1-March 31.

Benihana: For every $50 in gift cards purchased, get a $10 promotional card to redeem Jan. 2-March 31.

Bertucci's: For every $25 in gift cards purchased, get a $5 "Thank You" bonus card to use Jan. 1-March 31.

BJ's Restaurant & Brewhouse: Buy a $50 gift card and get a $10 bonus and 20% off VIP card or get a $25 bonus and the VIP card with a $100 gift card purchase. The bonus and VIP cards can be redeemed Jan. 1-Feb. 13.

Black Angus Steakhouse: Buy a $50 gift card and get a $10 bonus card.

Blaze Pizza: Buy $25 in gift cards and get a free pizza pass redeemable Jan. 1-Feb. 28.

Blimpie: Get a $10 bonus card with a $40 online gift card purchase.

Bob Evans: Through Dec. 24, get a $10 bonus with $50 in-store gift card purchase.

Bonefish Grill: For every $50 in gift cards purchased, get a $10 coupon to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 10.

Boston Market: For every $25 in gift cards purchased, receive a $5 bonus card to redeem through Jan. 31.

Bravo! Cucina Italiana: Get a $25 bonus card for every $100 gift card purchased. Bonus cards can be redeemed Jan. 1-March 15.

Brio Tuscan Grille: Get a $25 bonus card for every $100 gift card purchased. Bonus cards can be redeemed Jan. 1-March 15.

Bruegger’s Bagels: Buy $25 in gift cards and get $5 bonus card to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 28.

Buca di Beppo: Buy a $50 gift card and get a $10 bonus card to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 28.

Buffalo Wild Wings: Buy a $25 gift card and get a $5 bonus card to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 28.

BurgerFi: Through Dec. 25, receive a free $5 bonus card with every $25 gift card purchase, in-store only.

California Pizza Kitchen: Through Jan. 1, get a $20 promo card when you purchase $100 in gift cards to redeem Jan. 7-Feb. 24.

California Tortilla: Purchase $25 in gift cards and get a free entree coupon.

Capriotti’s Sandwich Shop: For every $25 in gift cards purchased, get $5 in Caps Cash that can be redeemed through the end of January.

Carrabba's Italian Grill: Buy $50 in gift cards and receive a $10 bonus card.

Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen: From Dec. 17-24, buy a $30 or more in gift cards and get a coupon for a free sandwich or Scratch Burger served with one side. The free meal is redeemable Dec. 24-Jan. 31.

Cheesecake Factory: For every $25 in gift cards you buy, get a “Slice of Joy” card for a free slice of cheesecake or layer cake to redeem Jan. 1-March 31.

Chili's: Get a $10 bonus card with a $50 gift card purchase to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 6.

Chuck E. Cheese's: Through Dec. 25, get a $10 bonus card for every $50 gift card purchased. Maximum four bonus cards per customer to be redeemed Dec. 26-March 31.

Cotton Patch Café: For every $25 gift card purchased, receive a $5 Café Cash card to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 28.

Culver's: Through Dec 30, buy $30 or more in gift cards and get a free Value Basket to redeem on your next visit through Feb. 28.

Daphne's: For every $30 purchased in gift cards, get $5 Daphne’s Dollars to use each in January, another $5 bonus to use in February and a third bonus to use in March.

Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House: Through Jan. 1, get a $20 bonus card for every $100 gift card purchased, which can be redeemed Jan. 1-March 31. Offer also valid at Del Frisco’s Grille.

Del Taco: Through Jan. 1, buy $30 in gift cards online and get one free small combo meal or buy $100 in cards and get four small combo meals. With an in-store promotion, get a coupon for two free grilled chicken tacos when you buy $15 in gift cards or get two coupons when you purchase $25 in gift cards.The free food coupons expire March 3.

Denny's: Through Dec. 25, buy a $25 gift card and get $50 in coupons.

Duffy’s Sports Grill: Buy $100 worth of gift cards and get a $20 bonus, which will be added to your Duffy's MVP loyalty account. You have 90 days after gift card purchase to redeem the bonus.

Einstein Bros. Bagels: Buy a $25 gift card and get a $5 bonus card to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 28.

El Fenix: For every $25 in gift cards purchased, get a $5 bonus certificate.

Farmer Boys: Buy $25 in gift cards and get a $5 voucher or buy $100 in gift cards and get $25 in vouchers. The vouchers can be used on a future visit and expire Jan. 31.

 

Fazoli’s: For every $20 in gift cards purchased at participating locations get a $5 voucher.

Firehouse Subs: While supplies last, buy a $25 gift card and receive a voucher for a free medium sub to use on your next visit.

First Watch: Buy $100 in gift cards and get a $20 bonus card to use Jan. 1-Feb. 28.

Fogo de Chão: For every $150 in gift cards purchased, get a $25 holiday bonus card to redeem Jan. 1-March 31.

Freebirds World Burrito: Through Jan. 6, get a free entrée or bottle of Death Sauce for every $30 spent on gift cards or for every $50 in gift cards get two free bottles of Death Sauce or a free entrée and a free bottle of Death Sauce. Death Sauce and Free Burrito cards valid through April 15.

Genghis Grill: Buy a $25 gift card in person or online and get a $5 bonus gift card or get a $15 bonus with purchase of $50 in gift cards. Bonus cards can be redeemed Jan. 1-March 31.

Grimaldi’s: Through Dec. 30, buy a $50 gift card and get a $10 bonus card or buy a $100 card and get a $20 card. Bonus cards expire Jan. 31. Gift and bonus cards not accepted in New York, New Jersey or Connecticut.

Hooters: Buy a $50 gift card online and get a free $10 gift card.

Hopdoddy Burger Bar: Get a bonus card for a free burger for every $30 purchased in gift cards that can be redeemed Jan. 1-March 31.

IHOP: Buy a $25 gift card at participating restaurants and get a $5 bonus coupon to use through Jan. 31.

Islands Restaurants: For every $25 gift card purchase, get a $5 bonus card to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 28.

Jamba Juice: Buy $25 in gift cards and get a $5 bonus card to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 28.

Jimboy’s Tacos: Buy $25 in gift cards and get a $5 bonus card. Load $25 onto the chain's Taco Nation mobile app to get an extra $5 credit.

Landry’s restaurants: Through Dec. 24, with gift card purchases at select Landry’s restaurants and properties, get free rewards cards to redeem Jan. 1-May 31, except for Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day. Learn more at www.landrysinc.com/giftcards. Offers vary and include:

Lettuce Entertain You: Get a $25 bonus card for every $100 in gift cards purchased. The bonus can be redeemed Jan. 2-April 10.

Logan’s Roadhouse: Through Dec. 19, get free $20 in bonus cards with a $50 online gift card purchase. Bonus cards, which are not valid in North Carolina, South Carolina and Augusta, Ga., cannot be used on day purchased and are valid through Feb. 13.

Maggiano’s: For every $100 gift card purchased, get a $20 bonus to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 27.

Metro Diner: Buy $50 in gift cards and get a $10 bonus card. In-store only.

Miller's Ale House: For every $50 in gift cards purchased, get a $10 bonus card that expires Feb. 28.

Mimi’s Cafe: For every $50 gift card purchase, get a $10 bonus to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 28.

Newk’s Eatery: Buy a $25 gift card and get $5 bonus or get a $10 bonus with purchase of a $50 gift card. Or buy a $100 gift card and get a $20 bonus.

Noodles & Company: For every $25 in gift cards purchased, receive a $5 bonus card that’s valid through Jan. 15.

O'Charley's: Through Dec. 24, buy a $25 gift card and receive $10 in rewards or bonus cards that can be redeemed Jan. 1-Feb. 13 for $5 off a $10 or more food purchase.

Olive Garden: Through Dec. 30, for every $50 you spend on gift cards, get a $10 bonus card to redeem Jan. 2-Feb. 10.

Ono Hawaiian BBQ: With a $30 gift card purchase, get a $10 bonus card to redeem Jan. 1-March 15.

Outback Steakhouse: Buy $50 in gift cards and get a $10 bonus card to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 10.

Panera Bread: For every $50 in gift cards purchased or reloaded, get a $10 bonus card to redeem Jan. 1-22.

PDQ: Get a $5 bonus card with every $25 in-store gift card purchase to use through Jan. 31. 

Penn Station East Coast Subs: Get a coupon for a free six-inch sub for every $25 purchased in gift cards. The free sub coupons can be redeemed on your next visit through Feb. 28.

P.F. Chang’s: For every $100 in gift cards purchased, get a $20 bonus card to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 28.

Pollo Tropical: For a limited time, for every $25 in gift cards purchased at participating restaurants, get a $5 bonus card to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 28.

Portillo's: Through Dec. 24, buy $50 in gift cards and get a $10 promo card to redeem Dec. 26-March 31.

Potbelly Sandwich Shop: Get a free sandwich with $25 gift card purchase at participating locations.

Qdoba: Buy a $30 gift card and save your receipt for free chips and queso to redeem Jan. 1-28.

Quaker Steak & Lube: Buy $50 in gift cards and get a bonus scratch-off card, which is a mystery bonus ranging from $10 to $20 off a future meal purchase Jan 1.-Feb. 28. A few will win a $500 Visa gift card. Through Dec. 24, get two bonus scratch-off cards with a $50 gift card purchase.

Red Lobster: For every $50 you spend on gift cards, get a $10 bonus card to use during a visit in January.

Red Robin: Buy a $25 gift card and get a $5 bonus card to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 28.

Rock & Brews: For every in-restaurant $10 gift card purchase, get a scratch and win card. Participating locations only.

Rubio's Coastal Grill: Get a $5 bonus card for every $25 in gift cards purchased to redeem Jan. 1-13.

Ruby Tuesday: For every $50 in gift cards purchased, get a $15 bonus card to redeem Jan. 2-March 5.

Ruth’s Chris Steak House: Purchase $250 or more in gift cards and get a bonus card for 10% of the total value you spent. The bonus card can be redeemed Jan. 1-March 31.

Scooter’s Coffee: For every $25 gift card purchased at restaurants, get a $5 bonus card.

Seasons 52: Buy $100 in gift cards and get a $20 bonus card to use Jan. 1-March 31.

Sharky's Woodfired Mexican Grill: Through Dec. 24, buy or reload a Sharky's Gift + Rewards card with $25 or more and get a free $5 bonus card valid Jan. 1-March 1.

Sizzler: Buy a $50 gift card online and get a $10 bonus or buy a $100 gift card and get a $25 bonus. Bonus cards can be redeemed Jan. 1-31. Limit three bonus cards per order.

Smoothie King: Get a free 20-ounce smoothie with purchase of a $25 gift card. In-store only, some restrictions apply.

Starbucks: Through Dec. 20 or while supplies last, buy a $10 or more Starbucks eGift Card using Masterpass, get a $5 Starbucks eGift Card. Limit one per customer.

Steak 'n Shake: Buy $20 in gift cards and get a free $5 gift certificate, valid Jan. 1-Feb. 28.

Sweet Tomatoes/Souplantation: Buy a $50 gift card and get a $10 bonus card valid through April 30.

Taco Bell: Through Dec. 17, buy a $10 gift card online and get a $5 bonus card, which can be redeemed through the app or website for food purchases through Dec. 24.

Taco Cabana: With a $25 gift card purchase, get a free $5 Guest Appreciation Card to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 28. 

TacoTime: Get a $10 bonus for every $40 gift card purchased online.

Texas de Brazil: Through Dec. 21, get a $25 bonus certificate with every $100 gift card or a $10 bonus with every $50 gift card purchase.

Texas Roadhouse: For every $30 in gift cards purchased, get a $5 bonus gift card. 

TGI Fridays: Get $5 in Bonus Bites bonus card for every $25 you spend on gift cards to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 28. When you purchase $50 or more of Fridays gift cards at locations also get a FandangoNOW movie code.

The Melting Pot: This isn’t a traditional gift card promotion but The Melting Pot is having a fundraiser to raise money for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Through Dec. 24, for every donation of $10, get a $20 Donate and Dine card to be used on a future purchase of $50 or more Jan. 2-Aug. 31.

Tijuana Flats: Buy a $25 gift cards and get $5 bonus bucks to redeem Jan. 2-Feb. 28.

Tony Roma's: Purchase $50 in gift cards and get $15 in Roma Bucks to redeem Jan. 1-March 22.

TooJay's: Through Dec. 24, for every $25 in gift cards purchased at restaurants, receive a $5 bonus card to redeem Dec. 26-Feb. 28.

Tropical Smoothie Café: Buy a $25 gift card and get a free 24-ounce smoothie at participating restaurants.

Twin Peaks: The chain is offering bounce back cards on gift card purchases including $5 back on a $25 gift card, $10 back with purchase of a $50 gift card, $20 back with $100 card purchase. Bounce back cards will be valid Jan. 1-31.

Uno Pizzeria & Grill: Through Jan. 1 for every $25 worth of gift cards purchased, get a $5 bonus voucher to use Jan. 2-Feb. 13.

World of Beer: Buy $50 in gift cards and get a $10 bonus card to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 10.

Yard House: For every $50 in gift cards purchased, get a $10 bonus card to redeem Jan. 1-Feb. 28.

Zoës Kitchen: Buy $25 in gift cards and get a $5 bonus card. 

Brooks Brothers: Through Dec. 24, buy a $150 gift store in-store and get a $25 bonus or get the same promotion online through 3 a.m. ET Dec. 26.

Dave & Busters: Buy a $50 gift card and get $10 free game play to redeem Jan. 1-March 31.

DSW: Through Dec. 26, get a free bonus card with select gift card purchases. With a $50 gift card, get a $5 bonus or get a $20 bonus with a $100 gift card or a $30 bonus with a $150 gift card purchase. Bonus cards can be redeemed Jan. 4-26.

eBay: The e-commerce giant has several gift card deals.

Guitar Center: Through Dec. 16, for every $100 gift card purchased, get a $20 promo card to use Dec. 26-Jan. 31.

Half Price Books: Through Dec. 24, get a $5 bonus card with each $25 gift card purchase to redeem Jan. 1-31.

J.C. Penney: Through Dec. 24, with a $100 in-store gift card purchase, get a $25 off $25 or more coupon to redeem Dec. 26-Jan. 31.

MAC Cosmetics: Through Dec. 26, with any eGift Card purchase totaling $50 or more, get a $10 reward card good to use on a future online purchase of $50 or more at www.maccosmetics.com.

Main Event Entertainment: For every $25 gift card purchase, receive $10 in free arcade play to redeem Jan. 2-March 26. Offer is valid in-center only.

Nordstrom: Through 11:59 PST Christmas, buy $300 in gift cards and get a $50 bonus or get a $20 bonus with a $150 gift card purchase. Bonus card can be redeemed Jan. 3-31.

Raise.com: Buy discounted gift cards or sell unwanted gift cards for cash at the online marketplace. Discounts vary by card.

Regal Cinemas: Buy $50 in gift cards at theaters and a free $10 bonus concessions card that can be redeemed Jan. 1-Feb. 28.

Soma: Through Dec. 24, for every $100 gift card purchased, get a $20 money card coupon to use Jan. 8-Feb. 2.

Stein Mart: Through Dec. 21, buy a $100 gift card and get a $20 bonus or a $30 bonus with a $150 gift card purchase. The bonus cards expire Jan. 1.

Target: With a Target REDcard, save 5 percent on specialty gift cards year round. Some exclusions apply.

The Children’s Place: Through Dec. 25, get a $10 bonus card with a $50 gift card purchase, a $15 bonus with a $75 gift card purchase or $20 when you buy $100 or more in gift cards. The bonus cards can be redeemed Dec. 26-Feb. 2.

Walmart: Look for gift card displays for bonus gift card deals. Selection varies by location and supplies are limited.

Wayfair: Through Dec. 26, buy a $100 gift card and get a $20 free card that will be emailed seven days from date of purchase.

Wholesale clubs: Look for discounts on gift cards at BJ's Wholesale Club, Costco and Sam's Club.

The fine print: Read the card's terms and conditions. Pay close attention to whether the card is redeemable only at a certain store or location.

Fees: Some state laws, bar service fees and expiration dates on store gift cards, but the rules on cards branded with the name of a credit card company are stricter. These cards cannot expire for at least five years and cannot have a service fee deducted unless it has not been used in 12 months.

Bonus cards: If you received a bonus gift card, sometimes called bonus bucks, most of these will expire.

Protect your card: Some gift cards can be registered as credit cards on websites listed on the card, which can protect them against theft or loss. Also take photos of the front and back of the card or write down card details as some companies will replace lost or stolen cards if you can provide specifics. Receipts with card information are good to hold on too.

Unwanted gift cards: If you get an unwanted card, you can sell it for cash or buy discount gift cards at sites like Raise.com.

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