Open letter to RedBalloon customers

by Naomi Simson

Gift cards have now become big business in Australia - a very different landscape to when RedBalloon was founded in 2001. Gift cards (including certificates, vouchers, coupons and tickets) have become an integral part of gift giving in Australia.

The toughest conversations I have ever had with any customer is in regard to expiry dates. Nobody likes them, including us. We had put in place a compassionate policy and extension program, and even reissued vouchers from time to time. But ultimately we, like everyone else, must expire them. But for a customer obsessed business, this has never been easy. (And especially not for me personally).

Most customers holding a gift card don’t realise that every retailer must have an expiry date for any type of voucher issued. Retailers must, at some point, remit the tax component of the voucher to the Tax Office. Tax is not paid until after a voucher is either used or expires. 12 months has long been considered industry standard.

At the end of the day, we want people to go on their experiences and have a wonderful time. And maybe do another one. After all, we’re all about #ExperienceGifting.

We are so excited that law has now passed in NSW requiring gift card issuers (or equivalent) to honour a voucher for 3 years from the date of issue. While the compliance date has not yet been specified for NSW, we believe it sets a precedent.

RedBalloon considers all customers equal, no matter where they live. As such we have toiled around the clock to ensure our systems are ready for this gifting season.

We are now offering 3 year expiry to every customer in Australia & New Zealand who purchases with us. In the spirit of what was intended, we will also ensure any voucher purchased since the bill was passed on 18 October 2017 will have a 3 year expiry.

To me as Founder this is wonderful - it’s music to my ears. There are thousands of RedBalloon customers out there currently holding vouchers with a 12 month expiry - I can only encourage you to use them before they expire.

And may I suggest that you subscribe to hear from us at and stay up to date with more news.

Kind regards,
Naomi Simson

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