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Better Use That Commissary Gift Voucher Before It's Too Late

At the slim chance that you still have a commissary gift voucher -- the paper gift certificate precursor to the current commissary gift card program -- at home, you better go and redeem it before it's too late.

Why? Because after August 31 of this year the commissary will no longer honor them, officials said today in a press release.

The Defense Commissary Agency (DeCA) started offering the current gift card program about six years ago, officials said, and stopped selling the paper vouchers. Still, they say even six years later there could be shoppers still out there with a voucher sitting at home, unused ... kind of like how I've had an IKEA gift card in my desk since 2011. (Yes, really.)

Does that sound like you? Then you have until September to use it or forever hold your peace.

If this discussion has you wondering how long a commissary gift card from the current program is good for, here's the answer: five years. You can buy them in the store and online, although those will carry a shipping and handling fee. They can also be used in every DeCA store stateside and overseas.

And commissary officials say they have a pretty awesome redemption rate. The industry gift card redemption rate, they said, is usually around 75 percent. But about 90 percent of commissary gift cards sold have been redeemed. That means fewer gift cards chilling unused in forgotten drawers at home.

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