Support local businesses with Belfast city gift card

  • Photo: Glenn Ross' business is part of the Minehead gift card scheme in England

    Fintech, Miconex has launched a new 'Spend It' campaign across over 60 of its Town and City Gift Card programmes in the UK and Ireland, including Belfast.

    The campaign hopes to encourage consumers to get out and spend local gift cards to support businesses reopening after the latest lockdown.

    The gift card can be spent in a variety of businesses, from retail to leisure to hospitality.

    Miconex is asking consumers to share where they have spent their local gift card on social media for a chance to enter a prize draw to win a £100 Town and City Gift Card of their choice.

    You can like or follow Town and City Gift Cards on Twitter or Facebook and tag them and the company you have spent your gift card in to be in with a chance of winning,

    Overall retail footfall in the UK in the week to 24 April 2021 was 80% that of the equivalent week in 2019, according to reports from the Office of National Statistics (ONS).

    Northern Ireland footfall saw a 6% increase between the weeks ending 17 April and 24 April.

    RELATED: New Belfast City Gift Card launched to encourage support for local businesses

    Over 47,000 Town and City Gift Cards were purchased in 2020 and Miconex said their popularity is attributed to the rise in use of multi-store gift cards and local shopping.

    The Gift Card and Voucher Association found that retail spend fell by 3.6% in 2020, the biggest drop in 50 years.

    Gift cards, however, remain popular. 76.3% have purchased a gift card in the last three years and uncertainty in UK retail has increased the popularity of multi-store gift cards, at 39.4% of gift cards in March 2021 vs. 32.4% in December 2020.

    Self-gifting of gift cards is on the rise, with 31.8% purchasing a gift card for self-use over the past three years.

    17.1% of gift card purchasers said supporting local businesses or the high street was a reason for them buying a gift card for themselves, increasing to 25.2% for 25-44 year olds.

    RELATED: Holywood man creates Support Local NI business site

    Colin Munro is the managing director of Miconex and commented: “Customers have taken the first step and purchased a local gift card, now is the time to spend it.

    "A Town and City Gift Card is a piece of potential. The potential to support a small, independent business who has struggled through the last year. The potential to keep money locked into where you live and the potential to safeguard jobs, livelihoods and the vibrancy of where you live.

    “Your local gift card can stay in your bag, wallet or in a drawer at home, or it can be turned into drinks with friends at your local, fish and chips on the seafront, a new outfit for the warmer weather to come or a long awaited haircut. Now is the time to get out and spend locally.”

    You can order a Belfast gift card here.

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