Book Sense Gift Certificates Go for the Gold

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The Book Sense Gift Certificate program continues to grow and gain national acceptance. Indeed, more gift certificates were sold on Web sites in December thancolo in the previous 11 months combined.

Begining this month, Book Sense will only offer the gold-colored gift certificate on -- with a space for a bookstore logo -- to bookstores that need to restock their Book Sense gift certificate supply. The original design (blue in color) is still valid and can be sold by stores participating in the Book Sense program until the store's stock is depleted. The blue design should continue to be redeemed in all stores with Book Sense. Because all Book Sense gift certificates are valid for two years from the date of sale, both designs should be redeemed regardless of which design a store is selling.

However, please note that expiration dates do not apply in California, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island. If a redeeming store accepts an expired certificate, Book Sense will reimburse the store providing criteria has been met for a valid certificate. Criteria include: the selling store's validation on the back of the certificate, all blanks on the face of the certificate are completed; and the redeeming store's validation, member number, and redemption date have been provided on the back of the certificate. Redeeming stores that have doubts about the selling store's status should consult the Book Sense Bookstore location directory. The printed directory (supplied for the gift certificate binder) is updated each quarter and sent in the white box. A state-by-state directory is updated each month and is available at It can also be downloaded by clicking here. Current locations can also be found online at

Any further doubts about the selling store's status becomes one of good customer service. Book Sense recommends that each store establish and post its policy about accepting gift certificates (whether or not the sale originated in your own bookstore). As long as the certificate is valid in every other way, and Book Sense can collect money from the selling store, Book Sense will pay the redeeming bookstore. In addition, if the certificates are stolen or lost from your store prior to being sold to a customer, notify ABA's controller, Ed Rush, immediately at (800) 637-0037, ext. 1244 or via e-mail at

Booksellers who have any questions about the gift certificate program can contact Jill Perlstein, (800) 637-0037, ext. 1283 or via email