WARNING: Happy Gift Cards Come With Amazing Discounts, But Be Aware of This HUGE Potential Security Flaw

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Happy Cards Warning Information Security

Happy Cards Warning Information Security

Earlier today I covered an Office Depot 20% off deal for discounted Happy Gift Cards. We have also covered similar in-store deals for these cards at Safeway/Von’s/Albertson’s and Stop & Shop/Giant. You can find the full list of cards and which merchants they are good at in my Office Depot post.

Great Discounts

With these cards selling at a 10-20% discount, they can be quite tempting to purchase. While some of the merchants aren’t great, others are fantastic. For this reason you MIGHT want to buy some Happy Cards, but before you do there is one HUGE thing you need to be aware of.

Seemingly Not Secure

Earlier today I went into Office Depot to purchase a Happy Gift Card. During my visit I discovered that the packaging does not conceal any card information. The following information is completely visible without opening the packaging:

  • Full Card Number
  • Expiration Date
  • CVV Code

Here is a picture I took of a card at Office Depot. I have blurred some of the card number and cutoff the expiration date and CVV, but I assure you it was all there unconcealed. Also keep in mind that Office Depot keeps their cards in the back of many of their stores and I wasn’t questioned when taking this picture. The card shown is one I purchased and have already used, but no one seemingly would have stopped me from taking photos of all of the cards.

Happy Cards Warning Information Security

How To Stay Safe

While these cards don’t seem to be secure, there is one way you can protect yourself. After purchasing my 20% off Happy Cards, I went to a merchant where they were accepted and bought that merchant’s gift card with the Happy Cards. I plan to use that merchant’s gift cards anyway and now I don’t have to worry about my Happy Cards going bad.

Keep in mind that despite these essentially being credit cards, some merchants may see them as gift cards and thus won’t allow you to purchase a gift card with a gift card. If the merchant can get past that, then these cards should process just like any other credit card. I wouldn’t buy too many Happy Cards without a plan to use them quickly.


I am a bit baffled as to why the makers of Happy Cards didn’t decide to better secure the card number and other important information. Perhaps they have some sort of additional security I don’t know about, but it seems to me that once those cards are activated, someone who previously saw the number could use them.

Have you had any issues with Happy gift cards purchased in-store? Let us know in the comments.

Shawn Coomerhttps://www.milestomemories.com
Since 2007 Shawn Coomer has been circling the globe with his family for pennies on the dollar. He uses that first-hand knowledge and experience to teach others how to achieve their travel dreams for the least amount of money possible.

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  1. The first Happy Card I bought I tried to use at Burger King. The cashier tried everything to make it work. The manager gave me a free meal. Then, at another BK, the cashier tried and tried to make it work. Finally, she ran it as credit and it worked fine. Since then, I have no ZERO issues. I tell them to run it as credit and it works.

  2. I got some Happy Gift cards to give for gifts. But decided to go ahead and use one myself at Panera Bread. I tried to use it, but it wouldn’t go through. Finally a mngr came & after several tries of manually trying to key in every single #, she unlocked the register & made it work sonehow. It had a few $ credit left & luckily I saved the receipt with remaining credit on card because my next trip into Panera…….. same thing happened again.
    So one day last week I tried to use another Happy gift card at Panera Bread. Same thing again. This time the employee & manager only tried a few times to make it work & had no luck. They told me that they were sorry & to contact whomever I got the cards from & let them know.
    How embarrassing this would have been if I had given these cards as gifts!!!!
    I will NOT be getting anymore Happy gift cards in the future!

  3. Tried to buy iTunes for $25 excepted it said would email instructions on how to redeem but never received an email when calling happy cards said it had been redeemed contacted I tunes they can’t help without a16 digit co de so what do I do now .Lose the &25

  4. Since they can apparently be used online, I guess it’s a moot point; but the card number on the magstripe is slightly different than the one printed on the card.

  5. I have $75 in happy gift cards. Tried using them at Buffalo Wild Wings and they didn’t work.
    So annoyed with these Happy cards.
    I’m done buying them .

  6. we got the happy guy gift card and it SUCKS!!! we cant use it at home depot, or Buffalo Wild Wings… and Auto Zone. we have 40 dollars that we can’t even use!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THIS SUCKS

  7. to be honest i’m so unhappy with this gift card. we got the Happy guy and so far Home Depot, Buffalo Wild Wings and AutoZone do NOT WORK!!!!!!!!!!! i have over 42 dollars and cant even use it!! so frustrating.

    • Same here! I tried to use it at American Eagle. I have a $20 balance on the card but the salesperson couldn’t get it to process. Crappy card.

  8. WORST CARD EVER!!!! You are unaware of what merchant you can purchase online until your order is declined. You call Happy Card Customer service and they have a ten day hold on your funds and will do NOTHING to release the funds for you to use.

  9. I guess you can make a class action lawsuit against them, using the logic of the people who are suing Walmart. Remember, their argument in their lawsuit was since other companies make gift card where the numbers are concealed in the package, Walmart should have done it too.

    That is why I think the logic in the Walmart lawsuit makes no sense; you will always find someone else who does something different and then claim everyone else should do that.


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