Top 13 gift cards that can be used internationally

International gift cards unlock opportunities for both the giver and the recipient. Inside and outside of work, the importance of thoughtful gestures that transcend borders and cultures is rising. At the forefront of this transformation is the rise in popularity of international gift cards. 

What are international gift cards?

International gift cards are prepaid payment cards accepted across different countries all over the globe. They offer recipients an easier way to make purchases and access services without the difficulties of currency conversions or the restraints of standard gift cards. 

For example, instead of gifting a friend a traditional gift card, giving them an international gift card is a creative way for them to explore different markets and products they don’t normally have access to.

The benefits of international gift cards

Using international gift cards has plenty of benefits to both the sender and recipient. Here are some advantages of using international gift cards:

Convenience, flexibility, and wide acceptance

The flexibility of international gift cards stands out as one of their biggest advantages. These cards empower recipients to pick from a wide array of options. Whether their interests are in fine dining, outdoor adventures, or cutting-edge technology, international gift cards allow individuals to select gift cards that match their tastes and preferences.
International gift cards also eliminate the struggles of shipping physical gift cards to different countries, making them convenient for long-distance gifting. Recipients can easily receive their gift cards via email and redeem them online. This saves time, effort, and shipping costs for the sender.

Increasing employee performance, motivation, and company success

In today’s global workforce landscape, companies are expanding and hiring across the world. That being said, the need for fostering a positive company culture in various locations is increasing too. One simple, yet effective way to do this is by building a global rewards and incentives program.

When it comes to implementing a global rewards program, one tool that can be very impactful is international gift cards. Here are three benefits of using these cards and how they can unlock the full potential of your global rewards and incentives program:

  • They’re globally accepted: International prepaid cards are accepted at millions of locations worldwide, including online retailers, brick-and-mortar stores, and ATMs. This global ensures that employees in different locations can easily access and use their rewards and incentives.
  • They’re easy to send: Sending international prepaid cards to employees is simple. Cards can be easily loaded with a monetary value and distributed electronically—eliminating the need for physical distribution and reducing administrative conflicts.
  • They have enhanced security: International prepaid cards are equipped with security features such as chip and PIN technology, making them secure and protected against unauthorized use. This provides peace of mind to both companies and employees, knowing that their rewards and incentives are safe.

With international gift cards serving as a powerful tool, they can enable companies to unlock the full potential of their global rewards initiatives while fostering employee engagement and satisfaction on a large scale.

High perceived value and customization

As one of the most convenient options for gifting and rewarding, international gift cards also have a higher perceived value than cash rewards, which makes them more effective at increasing employee motivation. In fact, 60% of employees who received a gift card as a reward reported that the experience positively affected their work outcomes.

International gift cards can also be tailored to meet recipients’ specific needs and preferences. Senders can customize the gift cards per their company logos, colors, or other branding, which can help increase awareness of their brand and build a sense of community among recipients.

Top international gift cards for global gifting

Here’s a list of the top international gift cards for global rewards and gifting. From Visa to Spotify, these prepaid cards and gift cards can please any recipient, no matter where they are in the world.

Commonly recognized cards

Visa: A popular choice for gifting because it offers recipients the flexibility to choose their own gift or make purchases wherever Visa is accepted. Recipients can use it for shopping at preferred stores, dining out, or arranging travel accommodations. It’s important to note that there may be activation fees or expiration dates associated with these gift cards.

Mastercard: Prepaid gift cards by Mastercard are globally accepted, and are safer than cash. They’re accepted in over 200 countries worldwide, and can be used online or in-person at various locations.The card can also be personalized with a custom message or image, making it a thoughtful and unique gift.

American Express: American Express gift cards are widely accepted all over the globe and their funds do not expire.

Retail and entertainment cards:

Amazon: International Amazon gift cards are versatile, allowing recipients to buy an array of items like electronics, books, apparel—and even groceries. These cards carry a pre-set value and can be exchanged for products and services offered by Amazon.

Spotify: For music lovers, a Spotify gift card is an ideal present. Spotify gift cards grant access to a library of over 70 million songs, ad-free listening, and the option to create personalized playlists.

Sephora: For those beauty gurus in your life, the Sephora gift cards are renowned as one of the best international gift cards. With physical stores spanning the globe, recipients can indulge in purchasing quality makeup, skincare, and fragrances using this card.

Airbnb: For those who love to travel, an Airbnb gift card can be a great present. With this card, recipients can reserve stays at accommodations globally, ranging from cozy apartments to lavish mansions or villas. Its value can be applied to any Airbnb booking without an expiration date, ensuring your recipients can use it whenever they're ready for their next adventure.

iTunes: For music, movie, and TV show enthusiasts, iTunes gift cards are an outstanding choice. Recipients can use them to purchase and download their favorite content from the iTunes Store. The card can also help pay for Apple Music subscriptions. 

Google Play:  For Android users, the Google Play Gift Card is an excellent choice. It grants recipients access to download their preferred content from the Google Play Store. These cards can be redeemed online or in-store, and are offered in a range of denominations from $10 to $100. They can also be redeemed on any Android device, whether it’s smartphones, tablets, or smart TVs.

Steam: Gamers will appreciate a Steam gift card, offering access to an expansive library of thousands of games, including popular titles like Minecraft. This digital gift card is bound to bring joy to any gaming enthusiast.

Specialized cards:

eBay: eBay gift cards are a great way to make purchases for items like clothes, gadgets, kitchen items, and furniture. They’re also one of the most popular gift cards in the United States. There are no extra fees or hidden charges attached to eBay gift cards. 

PlayStation: Recipients can purchase anything on the PlayStation store with their gift card. This includes video games, downloadable content, extras, video game subscriptions (common with MMOs), and more.

Xbox: Xbox gift cards simplify the process of adding digital credit to Microsoft account balances, purchasing games, movies, apps, and other content from the Xbox online store. They’re available digitally or in physical form, with codes delivered via email or SMS for digital cards. The credit on these cards never expires, so funds remain in recipients’ Microsoft accounts until redeemed.

Whether you're using international gift cards for your global rewards program or sending gifts across borders, these gift cards offer flexibility and convenience, ensuring satisfaction for recipients worldwide.

Using digital gift cards for international gifting and rewards

Digital cards are simple to acquire and use. Here are the steps to order them:

Purchase process

  1. You can purchase digital gift cards online through an online portal
  2. Select your desired funds and international gift cards.
  3. Customize the card according to your recipient's preferences and country of residence.
  4. Enter your recipient’s information.
  5. Add your payment details to complete the transaction. Be mindful of possible transaction fees.

Upon payment, the system sends a confirmation email to the purchaser, while notifying the recipient about the gift card.

The role of gift cards in sales incentives and employee rewards

A company’s culture lies in the connection it shares with its employees. International gift card incentives and global rewards can be channeled to enhance trust and staff engagement in key areas:

Compensation: Improve compensation packages with gift card rewards to affirm employee value and contribution.

Benefits: Better benefits packages by incorporating gift cards that empower employees with flexibility and choice.

Recognition: Celebrate employee accomplishments or acknowledge their work and dedication with personalized gift card rewards.

Appreciation: Express gratitude to cultivate positive morale and reinforce desired behaviors through thoughtful gift cards.

Loyalty: Use gift card rewards to increase employee retention and foster a cohesive and committed workforce.

Engagement: Boost workforce engagement through personalized gift card programs, to align incentives with individual interests and preferences.

Training: Recognize and incentivize skill development and professional growth with gift card rewards.

Beyond their role in sales incentives and employee rewards, it's important to consider the practical aspects of international gift cards.

Practical aspects of international gift cards

It's important to assess the user-friendliness of the international gift cards you send to recipients. Make sure it’s a simple process to check the balance of the gift card and understand the restrictions of its use. Some international gift cards can’t be redeemed in certain countries.

Redemption issues add friction and take the joy out of receiving a gift card. If your recipients have trouble accessing or redeeming their gift cards, you need to ensure that the gift card platform or distributor you’re using has accessible, quality customer service. 

Lastly, the customizable options offered by gift cards can significantly enhance the recipient's experience when receiving their gift. Make sure to review customization options before you send gift cards to make getting a gift card a much more enjoyable, personalized experience.

Choosing the right international gift card

Making sure you’re sending the right gift to your recipient—and sending international gift cards—can be daunting, especially with so many options and denominations available. But choosing the right international gift card doesn’t have to be difficult. Here are some useful tips to help you find the right gift for your recipient.

Factors to consider:

Recipient’s needs: What currency should the gift card be in? Are they planning a trip soon? What are their hobbies? Answering these questions could help you find the gift card that will excite them the most.

Applicable fees: Some gift card distributors will charge you activation or shipping fees depending on the gift cards and countries you’re purchasing them in. Review your distributor’s terms and conditions in order to determine if it’s the right fit.

Card features: Review the countries where the international gift cards can be used and if there are any options to customize the card before you send it. 

Prioritizing these factors is essential for maximizing international gift card effectiveness and ensuring recipients can fully enjoy their benefits across borders.


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