Every month, new names are added to the list of stores that offer gift cards. So far, we have discussed Walmart gift cardsRoblox gift cardsRedbox gift cards, and much more! Where most of these companies let you buy gift cards online or in-store, queries have been piling up about where you can purchase gift cards at self-checkout.

You can buy gift cards at self checkout lanes at Walmart, Target, Kroger and Safeway. These retailers allow for automatic activation of the card when you pay at the self checkout counter. You may require employee assistance with purchase of gift cards that need manual activation at the time of checkout.

Is It Possible To Buy Gift Cards At Self Checkout?

Gift cards require activation at the checkout. That is why most stores do not let you purchase gift cards at the self-checkout kiosk. Instead, cashiers help you activate the card manually at the regular register. 

However, some stores now let you buy gift cards at self-checkout. These terminals have introduced automatic activation of the cards, so you don’t have to wait for the store’s employee to help you out. Some of the places that you can check out include:

1. Walmart

Walmart hosts a self-checkout lane for gift card purchases. If you are buying a gift card requiring you to specify an amount, you have to scan the card and enter the amount before the transaction and activation can be completed.

Purchase of prepaid gift cards is more straightforward. You have to scan the card and pay! The checkout counter will take care of the activation itself.

2. Kroger

Kroger is another retailer where you can buy gift cards and complete the purchase at the self-checkout kiosk. Both types of gift cards, the ones with a pre-determined amount and the others without, are available for self-checkout here.

If you are buying a gift card with the pre-determined amount, the checkout will proceed smoothly, and the card will be automatically activated once you complete the transaction. On the other hand, when purchasing a gift card that requires you to specify an amount, you must enter the figure after scanning the card. In this case, the card is activated automatically.

3. Target

Can you buy gift cards at Target’s self-checkout?

Target was one of the first stores to introduce self-checkout lanes where customers could scan and pay for their products without relying on a cashier. Consequently, it integrated gift card purchases at self-checkout as well.

However, buying a gift card through the cashier lane would still be preferable. The self-checkout lane will put you on hold until a Target employee gets there to help you.

4. Safeway

Safeway sells prepaid gift cards and cards that require you to specify the amount at the time of purchase. Both of these can be purchased at self-checkout lanes.

You can pay for the gift cards without relying on a cashier. Moreover, the card would be activated automatically once the transaction is complete.

5. BJ’s Wholesale Club

BJ’s Wholesale Club is one of the few stores with completely self-automated checkout lanes. If you wish to purchase a gift card here, scan the card at the checkout and pay using any accepted payment method.

You can also choose the amount you want to load onto the card. There is no need to activate the card. It would be activated automatically once the transaction is complete.

6. The Home Depot

Home Depot majorly offers gift cards that have no set amount. Therefore, when you are in the self-checkout lane, it will prompt you to enter the amount you wish to transfer.

Some prepaid gift cards here are automatically activated once you scan and complete the payments.

7. Lowe’s

You can proceed to buy gift cards at Lowe’s by self-checkout. You can carry out almost all the processes until you get to the part where you must finalize the transaction. 

Lowe’s employee will come to the desk and help you complete the money transfer to purchase the gift card.

8. WinCo Foods

So, the last name on our list of self-check gift card stores is WinCo Foods. However, this is a partially self-automated store requiring a self-checkout attendant’s assistance.

This means you can get gift cards at self-checkout here, but there are some parts of the process in which WinCo Foods staff can help you out. These include scanning the card for the activation procedure.

What Other Stores Do Not Offer Gift Card Purchase At Self Checkout?

As you can see, several stores now let you complete gift card purchases at self-checkout. However, not all retailers and significant stores have introduced this feature yet.

These stores still demand that the cashier handle the transaction, and you need help to complete the activation. 

Some of these stores include:

  1. Kmart
  2. Whole Foods
  3. Sam’s Club
  4. CVS
  5. Food Lion
  6. Top Friendly Markets

Please keep in mind that store policies vary from one place to another, and you must check with the customer support service to ensure that the self-checkout option is available at the outlet you plan to visit. 

How Do Activation Works For Gift Cards Bought At Self Checkout?

Stores had added self-checkout lanes long before gift cards were made available there. That is because gift cards require activation, which, in most cases, had to be done manually. 

To understand which stores now allow for gift card purchases at self-checkout, it is essential to check how activation works with different gift cards. 

Prepaid gift cards, for example, are most accessible to buy at self-checkout. These carry a pre-determined amount of money and are mainly automatically activated when you pay for them at the counter. Only in some cases do you need to call the company and request activation. Visa and Mastercard typically issue prepaid gift cards

If going for over-the-phone activation, you must provide the activation code at the back of the card. The rest of the procedure may be explained over receipt or packaging details.

Visa and Mastercard also issue gift cards with no set amount. You can load them with the balance of your choice, but typically up to $500. These cards require manual activation, but in some cases, you may be allowed to enter the amount yourself and complete the activation at self-checkout.

The last available option is store gift cards. These gift cards can be purchased explicitly at a store and may be prepaid or with no set amount.

Buying and activating these gift cards would be the same as the two methods discussed above. The difference only lies in which type of card you are getting. 

How Can You Check Your Gift Card Balance After The Purchase?

Got your gift card and can’t wait to confirm that you have enough balance on it to start shopping around? It is an excellent practice to keep the card amount in check. However, the method to do that may vary depending on your own gift card.

The most reliable method, and the one that always works, is to get in touch with the company’s customer support team. They would ask you to provide the security code for the card. Then, you can inquire about the balance. You can also visit your local store and check the balance at the gift card kiosk. 

Before You Go!

To our relief, there are many stores now with self-checkout kiosks. You can find them in various grocery and retail stores. Even if the gift card purchase is not fully automated, little help from the cashier should take less time than standing in long queues to wait your turn.

If self-checkout is not an option, there are other ways to buy gift cards that you must explore! For example, you can buy Visa gift cards with Venmo now or purchase gift cards online with a checking account. It is also possible to buy now and pay later for gift cards so you don’t break your pocket!

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