- (Reuters/Joel Boh)
Starbucks has just introduced its new $450 gift card. Made of stainless steel, it will be available for a limited time only, although it's not in stores.
Mixing design with exclusivity, Starbucks has introduced the new, limited edition Starbucks card that is made of stainless steel. Each card has been specially etched and cost the company $50 to make, according to reports, meaning that the card is only worth $400.
The company has stated that it will only make 5,000 of the limited edition cards, which will be sold exclusively through Gilt.com, USA Today reported. The innovative idea is likely to set a trend, according to some market experts.
"I won't be at all surprised to see other retailers follow," National Retail Federation vice president of operations Daniel Butler told USA Today.
But others have ridiculed the card, suggesting that it is an over-the-top show of wealth.
"This is a card for the 1 percent," cultural anthropologist Robbie Blinkoff said. "It's all about status, and to tell you the truth, I don't know if I'd want to be seen with one of these."
The card will be made exclusively available to Starbucks members only on Thursday, giving loyal fans an entire day before the card will be available for purchase by everyone Friday morning.
"Some stores will never even see this card," Ryan Records, vice president of cards and payments at Starbucks said of the new steel card. Like other gift cards before that have sold to collectors for over a thousand dollars, the new card could spark a lot of interest.
Those who receive the card will be automatically granted gold star member rewards, which include free coffees and extras.
"Can Starbucks be any more pretentious?" one user asked on a Huffington Post blog.
"It's unneededly [sic] decadent and a total waste if money," another user added, "but even though I don't have $450 to waste I have to admit to being tempted."