Holiday Giveaway: Enter to win $250 to shop from Serve by American Express

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Happy Holidays! Enter our Giveaway to Get Festive

Back in September I shared with my readers how I was going to be evaluating the Serve card from American Express.  At that time, I shared how Serve had offered me $250.00 to do my holiday shopping.  Since then, I’ve used the Serve card just like I would use my American Express card to buy items at retail stores. I’ve even used it at airports to upgrade my boarding time (from Group 4 to Group 1) or buy dinner on board.   Serve is a prepaid digital and plastic debit car that also allows members to send and receive money quickly and make purchases online, offline and via mobile. Serve is accepted everywhere American Express is (in the United States), with 24/7 customer service and no fees.  With Serve, because it’s not a credit card, there are no finance fees.

Now, as I promised, I am going to share the holiday shopping joy with all of you.. plus wait for it…a  prize of a $250.00 American Express gift card. With an American Express Gift Card, you get the full amount on the card, there are no fees or service charges, so all $250.00 will really be at the winner’s disposal.  This is a super prize for one lucky reader!  Serve by American Express is accepted at millions of shops and restaurants around the world, so the options for spending & fabulous finds are almost infinite.  The winner will be able to use their Serve card loaded with $250.00 to shop all the great New Year’s sales.

How to Enter
You must leave a comment here on the blog to enter sharing your ideas on what you would do with $250.00 in 2013 . Would you:

  • Go out for a special celebration with friends
  • Buy that special dress or handbag you’ve been lusting for
  • Go on a home decorating spree to update a room in your house
  • Invest in a special vacation in the New Year

Show us all what a smart shopper you are by dazzling us with your shopping genius! 🙂  After you have left a comment, you can receive additional entries by sharing the contest on Twitter, following @Recessionista on Twitter and liking us on Facebook. You can  Tweet daily to receive additional contest entries, just Tweet from the widget here in this blog post so we can count all your Tweets. That makes it easy for you to get one extra entry for each Tweet.

This giveaway will run until 11:59 EST /8:59 PST on Sunday, Dec. 30th, so enter quick!  This giveaway is being conducted using the Rafflecopter widget.  Hit the Read More Link to enter via the widget.  If you don’t see the widget here, just leave a blog post comment with your email address so you can be entered.  Just hit the comment button (look for the Post a Comment link under this post.) This giveaway is open to only US residents so please take that into account when you submit your entry.  Stay tuned, more giveaways to come.   This giveaway is now closed.  Congrats to our winner Laura!
a Rafflecopter giveaway




Since 2008, Mary Hall has been the author of The Recessionista Blog, which is read by thousands of regular readers in over 160 countries. An internationally recognized expert on the art of the living the good life for less, she has been a commentator on local, national, and international radio and TV shows. Her advice has been featured in over 2,000 media outlets, including The New York Times, Reuters, Life & Style magazine, ABC News, NBC News and now The Huffington Post, among many others.


  1. Andrea Darst

    December 18, 2012 at 4:51 pm

    I’d pay some bills, honestly. (I’m a little afraid to enter this contest because I still haven’t received my $100 from the last contest.)

  2. kristi

    December 18, 2012 at 4:54 pm

    I love this blog! Because of the Recessionista I joined Rent the Runway and was able to find the perfect dress for NYE 2013! Thanks for all the news and give-a-ways!!!

    • kristi

      December 18, 2012 at 4:57 pm

      I would use the gift card to pay for my NYE Gown!

  3. LaNeisha Shelton

    December 18, 2012 at 5:02 pm

    If I answered this question a few days ago I would’ve stated that I would buy more gifts but today I’d send flowers to Newton, CT!

  4. mara zamora

    December 18, 2012 at 5:10 pm

    I’d buy my daughter and myself some clothes and i would also pay my montly hospital bill from when i was in there for the miscarriage i had 🙁

  5. Bree Cooley

    December 18, 2012 at 5:12 pm

    Thanks for offering a great giveaway! I would take a weekend cruise to Mexico! I need some forced relaxing down time. It’s been a tough year and I’m craving it. Happy Holidays! 🙂

  6. Rust

    December 18, 2012 at 5:29 pm

    I would use it help pay off medical bills. I can’t go shopping just yet. 🙂

  7. bradley howard

    December 18, 2012 at 5:40 pm

    i would Go on a home decorating spree to update a room inmy house

  8. Alexis L

    December 18, 2012 at 5:41 pm

    I’d use the money for my first date night with my husband post the arrival of our son 3 weeks ago.

  9. ruby reis

    December 18, 2012 at 5:55 pm

    buy my hubby some of his favorite wines for our 10th anniversary….

  10. Becky Cook

    December 18, 2012 at 6:10 pm

    •Go out for a special celebration with friends

  11. Tabathia B

    December 18, 2012 at 6:31 pm

    I would help my daughter with her college tuition

  12. Ashley Hatten

    December 18, 2012 at 6:35 pm

    this would go into our vacation fund! thank you!

  13. ellen beck

    December 18, 2012 at 7:08 pm

    I would use it to get another cat neutered and shots- pretty exciting huh? 🙂

  14. Zan

    December 18, 2012 at 8:24 pm

    I would redecorate my bedroom! Boy does it need it!!!!!

  15. Amber

    December 18, 2012 at 8:43 pm

    We are planning a trip to California for my birthday in March, so I’d LOVE to put this cash toward our trip! 🙂 Thanks so much!

  16. Jessie C.

    December 18, 2012 at 9:17 pm

    I’d use it to get a new washer.

  17. Roni

    December 18, 2012 at 9:29 pm

    I would do some redecorating around my house.

  18. Lewis F

    December 18, 2012 at 9:48 pm

    My friends are having a reunion of sorts. The prize would help me get there.

  19. Amanda Sakovitz

    December 18, 2012 at 9:49 pm

    I would have a spa day! It’s been way too long 🙂

  20. Thomas Murphy

    December 18, 2012 at 10:08 pm

    I would buy a new TV

  21. Bethany Templeton

    December 18, 2012 at 10:09 pm

    I would buy a new outfit for NYFW! Or finish some Christmas shopping!

  22. Nataly Carbonell

    December 18, 2012 at 10:41 pm

    Traveling! I love traveling!

  23. Lynn

    December 18, 2012 at 11:28 pm

    I want to go into the new year debt free, this holiday is blowing a hole in my credit card so much to pay for. hopefully i can start the year financially stable.

  24. Wendy T

    December 18, 2012 at 11:42 pm

    I’d put that money away. I’m saving for a new (used) car and that would help a lot.

    Thank you.

  25. chani

    December 18, 2012 at 11:46 pm

    i would use the 250 on a night out with my husband and spend the rest of it on shoes 🙂

  26. Elena

    December 18, 2012 at 11:56 pm

    I would buy a new laptop

  27. Mami2jcn

    December 19, 2012 at 12:21 am

    I would use it for a weekend getaway hotel stay this winter!

    • Mami2jcn

      December 19, 2012 at 12:22 am

      I entered on the rafflecopter as Mary Happymommy.

  28. Tina M

    December 19, 2012 at 12:35 am

    Road trip with my family

  29. Kelly D

    December 19, 2012 at 1:43 am

    We are planning to take my kids to Disney World in the spring, so this could go towards travel expenses.

  30. Jennifer Marie

    December 19, 2012 at 1:55 am

    I would buy my kids some new winter clothes!

  31. ella

    December 19, 2012 at 2:38 am

    I would buy textbooks, and furniture for my apartment.

  32. Barbara Montag

    December 19, 2012 at 2:44 am

    This would go into my vacation fund – it’s been way too long!
    Thank you.

  33. Tammy S

    December 19, 2012 at 3:22 am

    I would use the money to buy a plane ticket to see my family in the new year.

  34. Chele

    December 19, 2012 at 7:09 am

    I’d save some and spend the rest on some great deals from the post-Christmas sales.

  35. courtney b

    December 19, 2012 at 1:14 pm

    i would get some new clothes for me and my daughter

  36. stephanie

    December 19, 2012 at 1:50 pm

    i would buy a new hang bag!!

  37. Christina Brundick

    December 19, 2012 at 3:12 pm

    my son is having a 2 day inpatient medical procedure so I would use it for our related parking/food costs

  38. Wild Orchid

    December 19, 2012 at 3:39 pm

    I would use it as a gift to my mother-in-law who just graduated college!!

    wildorchid985 @ gmail dot com

  39. Celeste

    December 19, 2012 at 6:15 pm

    I’d actually give it to my dad, so he could purchase more items to create fly fishing rods (his new hobby that he loves!).

  40. Anne W.

    December 20, 2012 at 12:53 am

    I would use it toward groceries and bills. Thank you for the giveaway!

  41. Stefanie Gladden ( A

    December 20, 2012 at 2:35 am

    I would buy a new winter outfit!!

  42. Xenia

    December 20, 2012 at 4:56 am

    I would buy a bag!!!!!

  43. Erika Larson

    December 20, 2012 at 6:26 am

    I would go on a home decorating spree so that I can finally finish decorating my new apartment! Moved into a new place this summer and have been wanting to decorate, but haven’t had the extra money to do it. This would help me finally get it done!

  44. Marie Young

    December 20, 2012 at 9:54 am

    I would definitely do some redecorating around my home!

  45. Shannon

    December 20, 2012 at 1:48 pm

    I’d spend it on a weekend with my husband!

  46. Tian A.

    December 20, 2012 at 3:58 pm

    I would love to buy my own laptop, thank you.

  47. Deirdre

    December 20, 2012 at 5:05 pm

    I’d like to take my mom out for a girls day — she needs it and deserves it!

  48. Courtnie

    December 20, 2012 at 5:55 pm

    I’d buy textbooks.

  49. Emily

    December 20, 2012 at 6:28 pm

    I would use it to have a romantic weekend with my boyfriend

  50. Ashleigh

    December 20, 2012 at 8:41 pm

    Yesterday I became an Aunt and last month a god mother! And, it would only be appropriate to shower these two additions to the world with gifts from their loving Aunt and god mother =) I’d also get my bf a gift for dong well on his Law school finals!

  51. Sonya Morris

    December 20, 2012 at 8:51 pm

    Pay off some of these doctor and dental bills!

  52. naomi c

    December 20, 2012 at 9:00 pm

    maybe a mini road trip with the fam after christmas!

  53. Tiffany Winner

    December 20, 2012 at 9:18 pm

    i’d buy some cute maternity clothes and new shoes

  54. amy pugmire

    December 21, 2012 at 12:21 am

    I would use it towards a disneyland trip

  55. Molly Bussler

    December 21, 2012 at 2:29 am

    I would throw a party for myself, “SHOPPING”

  56. GP

    December 24, 2012 at 10:16 am

    I would spend it on a fabulous meal!

  57. Lisa Carr

    December 24, 2012 at 3:57 pm

    I would use it to update my home. More specifically, I’d paint. We haven’t painted here in 14 years, it’s way overdue.

  58. Petunia

    December 24, 2012 at 8:43 pm

    With the gift card, I will:
    tithe 10% or $25 to my fav local animal charity
    get a fabulous hair cut and maybe a few highlights at my local small bizness salon

    happy holidays!

  59. Meghan

    December 25, 2012 at 2:32 am

    pay bills or put towards rent

  60. Tammy Leonard-Bruton

    December 25, 2012 at 7:15 am

    Right now I’m temporally homeless. I ‘d rent a trailer I’ve had my eye on in January. Or get a cell phone. Merry Christmas !!

  61. Keily Owens

    December 25, 2012 at 9:03 am

    I would get my wedding ring fixed so I could where it again I have been married 11 years and I want to be able to where my ring but I am unable too because I don’t have the money. This would make it Happen!!

  62. Don

    December 25, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    I would use the extra money to take my wife on a better 2nd Anniversary cause our Honeymoon and 1st Anniversary I had to work… but I did take my beautiful wife with but wasnt what a Honeymoon or Anniversary should be 🙁

  63. Janni

    December 26, 2012 at 12:18 am

    I just bought a new house this month, but Christmas is the spirit of giving, so I would use half for things for the kitchen, and I would donate the other half to either the victims of the Sandy Hook tragedy, or the victims of the storm Sandy. Maybe both. Perhaps we could take a poll. I love your blog! Happy Holidays to you and all other readers !

  64. Dorothy Sandman

    December 26, 2012 at 12:37 am

    I would spend the money to help my son purchase a used car.

  65. JD B

    December 26, 2012 at 1:18 am

    I think I would put it towards a TV upgrade.

  66. Wanda McHenry

    December 26, 2012 at 2:12 am

    I would spend it on things for our new house, when we find one!

  67. Andrew

    December 26, 2012 at 2:13 am

    I’d use the money to pay some bills.

  68. Ellen B

    December 26, 2012 at 3:21 am

    I would buy a new pair of glasses so I can see better

  69. Carol Buchman

    December 26, 2012 at 5:45 am

    After I finished my “happy dance”, I’d make an apointment to get the dental work done that I’ve been putting off!!

  70. Angie PreciselyMine

    December 26, 2012 at 5:35 pm

    I’d use this money for some much needed clothes for myself.

  71. Amanda J

    December 26, 2012 at 5:43 pm

    I’d put it towards a long weekend snowboarding getaway with my boyfriend to Snowshoe, VA.

  72. Jeanna

    December 27, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    I would use it to refinish our kitchen floor!

  73. Jeanna

    December 27, 2012 at 7:58 pm

    I would use it towards refinishing our kitchen floor!

  74. Heather

    December 27, 2012 at 8:31 pm

    I’m road-tripping to NYC right after New Year’s day – this would be great for gas and food on the way up!

  75. laura j jenkins

    December 27, 2012 at 10:45 pm

    love to learn new information on things going on

  76. Jenna Parsons

    December 27, 2012 at 11:31 pm

    I would use it towards a new stove! The one we have is really creepy and old.

  77. Crystal Sell

    December 27, 2012 at 11:45 pm

    Using it towards going to visit my family for the new year.

  78. Michelle R

    December 28, 2012 at 4:01 am

    I’d use it to help with moving early in the new year!

  79. Michelle H.

    December 28, 2012 at 4:34 am

    I want to learn how to sew in 2013….I’d use it toward a new sewing machine to get me started.

  80. rebecca shockley

    December 28, 2012 at 5:54 am

    I would join Curves for women

  81. Ditto

    December 28, 2012 at 5:14 pm

    I’ve would save up to buy a new laptop. I really need one!

  82. Mel

    December 28, 2012 at 8:44 pm

    I would take my girls to the Great Wold Lodge!

  83. Melissa MAzzur

    December 28, 2012 at 8:44 pm

    I would take my girls to the great wolf lodge!

  84. Diana C

    December 29, 2012 at 2:02 am

    I’m starting a new job in 2013! I would use the money to get a new waredrobe to match the new job. Fabulous!

    Diana C

  85. amber p

    December 29, 2012 at 3:02 am

    have a party for my friends

  86. Lora Mccracken

    December 29, 2012 at 5:25 am

    I could add $250 to my vacation fund. I’m saving money to my Serve card…. Thanks!

  87. Julie

    December 29, 2012 at 9:11 am

    Paying for my college books

  88. Lisa Dion

    December 29, 2012 at 10:25 am

    I’d use it to pay some bills, and treat my parents to a date night, on me. They deserve some pampering

  89. Abby Kraynick

    December 29, 2012 at 3:50 pm

    I would use this to pay off some Christmas debt I made… And I would get a cool haircut to start the new year off with a BANG ♥

  90. Debra Hamilton

    December 29, 2012 at 5:41 pm

    I would use the giftcard to buy something for myself that I would normally not spend money on!

  91. Donna

    December 29, 2012 at 10:43 pm

    I’d use it towards our spring break vacation with the kids

  92. Jen-Eighty MPH Mom

    January 1, 2013 at 5:37 am

    I would definitely go on a home decorating/DIY shopping spree!