I'm sure this has happened to you: you find a charming restaurant, get all excited about the menu, the ambiance, the "there's something about them" staff and decide to dine at the establishment. Then you're hit with the cash-only edict that you missed earlier. If you really want to eat at that restaurant, an ATM run is usually the next step. Do you ask that they accept your payment via credit card? I have never witnessed someone try to convince a cash-only restaurant to accept their credit or debit card. Perhaps it's happened but I've never been privy to that. Once you've agreed to enter into a business relationship with that restaurant you pay according to their terms.
If your boss told you, "I'm not comfortable signing your checks so I will pay you with a gift card", would that go over well with you?
Didn't think so.
After sending an invoice, I had a potential client ask if they could pay their deposit with an Amazon Gift Card. Their reasoning was they don't know how to use PayPal (it was a Square invoice) and they are uncomfortable using their debit credit card online. Can I understand being a little uncomfortable using a debit or credit card online? Yeah... a little... but with the new chip cards, not so much.
The point is I think it's more common for freelancers (I'm using that as an umbrella term for freelancers, independent contractors, entrepreneurs, individual service providers etc) to have to deal with customers or clients who think they can adjust the terms of payment. I may be an individual but I am running a business and I appreciate when my terms of business are respected the adhered to.
You may not walk into a brick and mortar to receive my services or purchase my products but that doesn't mean our contract - money for services/products - is made up as we go along. I set my terms so that my life is easier and so the IRS will leave me alone and also to protect you, the customer. It's bad enough that some people balk at the prices freelancers charge. Now they don't even wanna pay in "money".
Seth Godin has instilled in me how important it is to find my clients. Not every one will be your client. We all have clients who find us, love us, hire us. Those clients are wonderful and we love them too.
Offering to pay me hundreds of dollars on a gift card is insulting. I can't give a gift card to my landlord, ya dig?
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