National Gift Card (NGC)

National Gift Card (NGC)

Commodity: Gift Cards

Preferred Contract Supplier for Gift Cards

NGC is the world’s largest, independently owned gift card company exclusively serving the business-to-business loyalty, rewards, and incentive marketplace. They offer gift cards from most major US retailers using the highest levels of security, quality, and speed. From bulk ordering to individual fulfillment, NGC offers the industry’s largest gift card service. Their product list consists of 500 retail partner brands in the US, Canada, UK, and Europe. NGC is an ISO 9001 certified organization with a quality-focused environment and culture.

Gift cards are only authorized to be purchased, as follows:

  1. Gift cards are only allowable on C&G funds (550 fund code), Non-Sponsored Programs Research Foundation Account funds (544 fund code), and Foundation funds (599 fund code).
  2. Gift cards can only be purchased as research participant incentives if they were included in the approved IRB protocol related to the non-sponsored project OR if they were included in the approved budget and IRB protocol for the sponsored project.  
  3. Effective December 1, 2020, all gift cards distributed for research participant incentives must be purchased through the SpearMart catalog under the supplier National Gift Cards (NGC). Employee Cash Advances will no longer be processed for the purchase of research participant gift cards.  At no time should gift cards be purchased on a Pcard or a Payment Request Form.

NOTE:  Gift cards are considered taxable income to the recipient by the IRS.  The Principal Investigator is therefore responsible for collecting the IRS Form W-9 information and reporting it to the Controller’s office for any research participant receiving more than $599 in a calendar year.


For instructions on how to shop using the Punch-Out Catalog in SpearMart – see the “Shopping from a Punch-Out Catalog” at the link below.

For information on the eCodes please access:

Overview of Punch-Out Order Process:

  • Requestor places order through SpearMart
  • Order ships within 1-3 business days
  • Plastic card orders are invoiced upon shipping
  • Digital card orders are invoiced upon receipt of PO
  • Requestor receives shipping confirmation email for physical cards
  • Requestor receives an “Order Ready” email from NGC for digital gift card orders
  • Once an order has been placed and a correct invoice is received by FSU from NGC, customers only have ten (10) business days to “receive” on the PO in OMNI so that payment can be made to NGC.

Supplier will notify the customer whenever an ordered product is out-of-stock to determine if the customer wishes to back order the product or cancel that order.

No minimum order is required.

Order Changes:  No substitutions with alternate items for products ordered will be permitted. NGC shall not substitute and/or interchange a different brand or generic product or package size. Instead, the customer must cancel that order and place a new order through the punch-out catalog.

Order Cancellations: PO may be canceled as long as the cards have not yet shipped.

Funding Source & Reconciliation:  Gift cards cannot be expensed on a sponsored project until the cards have been distributed to the research participants.  As such, gift cards should be purchased on an SRAD (550) account, Non-Sponsored Programs Research Foundation (544) account, or a Foundation (599) project.  Once the gift cards are distributed to the research participants, the department should prepare a DOL to transfer the expense from the SRAD account to the respective sponsored project. If the funding source is a Foundation project, the department should prepare a DOL to record the expense and alleviate the advance on the respective Foundation project. The DOL should only be for the amount of cards that were distributed for that project and must include the Human Subjects log as backup (deidentifiable logs are allowable when required by the IRB protocol).  The DOL should be submitted to Sponsored Research Administration (SRA), the FSU Foundation (FSUF), or the FSU Research Foundation (FSURF) for review and approval within 90 days of the date the cards were distributed to the research participants.

Link to Human Subjects Log here.

If for any reason the gift cards are determined to be unallowable on the sponsored project, such as the gift cards being distributed without the appropriate approved IRB protocol or failure to provide the required backup documentation, the DOL will be denied and the cost of the gift cards will remain on the departmental SRAD account.  If the department is unsure whether the gift cards are allowable on their sponsored project, they should contact SRA or the FSURF PRIOR to purchasing the cards.


NGC offers two delivery methods for gift cards – electronically, via a secure portal, and physically, via standard ground, 2 day, and overnight delivery methods.  The option for signature required upon delivery is available for a fee. The shipping fees for physical cards will appear as a separate line item on the invoice. There is no shipping charge for electronically delivered cards.

Shipping rates:

UPS Ground - $9.99

UPS Second Day - $15.99

UPS Overnight - $21.99

Signature Required - $5.25

All orders (physical and electronic cards) will be processed upon receipt of PO and will be shipped within 1 to 3 business days.

NOTE: All gift cards will be active upon receipt

Delivery Method for Electronic Cards (e-Cards):

  • NGC’s eCode Management System (EMS) is a secure SFTP site where the codes are stored until retrieved by FSU, and is designed to make the eCode order delivery process secure and convenient to use. With NGC’s EMS, FSU can check order status, download available eCode order files at any time, keep track of eCode order file downloads, and run eCode order reports.

FSU Customers will have their own unique log-in credentials and pin# in order to access the EMS platform.

An email from will be sent to first time users when they place an order with information on how to access this system.  The link will prompt the user to create a user name and password to access the EMS and retrieve your digital gift card order. As an added security measure, a PIN number is required to create your login credentials. Once you receive your “welcome” email, please call the NGC Customer Care Team at 888-472-8747 and NGC will provide it to the user immediately. *Please note – orders cannot be processed until the user completes this (one-time) step. The user will receive email notifications with your eCode order statuses: Posted, Pending and Ready. Once your order is processed (24-72 hours from placing order) you will receive an email notifying you that your order is “Ready” for download. Visit and log in with your EMS Username and Password to retrieve your digital gift card order and download the file. It is recommended to save as a password protected file.

Within the file there will be a column for the Retailers, a column for the Denominations, a column for the URL, and for a few select merchants, a secret code or challenge key is provided. Not all merchants require the use of a secret code or pin, but some do. This is determined at the merchant level. End users simply follow the instructions provided in the merchants template.

The URL (column E) is what you will distribute to the recipients. The end recipients will click on the URL link and it will open up to the Merchant approved template. From there, the end recipient can redeem online or print and redeem at a retail location.

  • For security purposes, NGC does not recommend the distribution of raw codes. The eCode is embedded into a secure URL link. When the end recipient clicks on the link, they are redirected to the landing page of the Gift Card Merchant where they can view, redeem or print the eGift card.

Rush Orders – NGC’s standard 1 to 3 business days on order processing applies to all orders, including any rush order requests. There is no special order processing time for rush orders. If an order is needed for rush delivery, you should select the appropriate expedited delivery method (e.g. overnight) or electronic gift cards. Delivery windows are determined based on the date the order is processed, not the date the order was received by NGC.  In this manner, an order placed with Overnight delivery will be received within 4 business days once the order is placed within the punch-out catalog – up to 3 days for order processing and 1 day for delivery.


NGC’s policy is that “All sales are final.” However, NGC is willing to consider a return on a case by case basis for extenuating circumstances. There are some card brands that do not allow for returns, such as the cards that expire down (e.g. Visa or American Express). For any returned card accepted by NGC, they will verify the card balance and issue a credit for the full remaining balance, minus a 15% reissue fee. FSU is responsible for the return shipping fee.  Return costs, including the reissue fee and shipping costs, will not be allowable on sponsored projects.  These costs will remain on the departmental SRAD account used to purchase the cards.  However, the benefit of purchasing these cards on SRAD funds is it allows unused cards from one project to be used on another project.


With the exception of Visa Reward Cards, American Express Reward Cards, and American Express Cards, the following applies:

  • All cards are sold at face value or card denomination value, i.e. a $10 Amazon gift card costs $10.
  • Gift card funds do not expire.
  • There are no activation fees, except as follows:
  • Visa Reward Card $2.95 USD (12 months expiration) per card
  • American Express Reward Card $2.50 USD (12 months expiration) per card
  • American Express Gift Card $3.25 USD (no expiration) per card

Special Charges:

  • Voided and Replaced Card Fee as follows:
    15% per card fee for all cards to be voided and replaced, unless otherwise noted.
  • No monthly service fee for card usage or inactivity will apply.


Cards must be safeguarded at all times and accounted for as if they were cash. The person accountable has primary responsibility for safekeeping, maintenance and proper usage and for advising faculty, staff or students of the proper handling policy and procedure. For grants, the Principal Investigator (PI) must maintain all records regarding the research participants.

The following controls are required at a minimum:

  • The person accountable holds custody over the cards and should always know where they are located. Custody may be transferred temporarily from the person accountable to other departmental personnel for disbursement purposes, but the person accountable still holds primary responsibility for the safekeeping of the cards.
  • Physical Cards must be secured at all times (e.g. in a locked cabinet or drawer) with limited access. They must not be taken home for safekeeping.

Once purchased, the control and safekeeping of the gift cards is the responsibility of the issuing department. Gift cards will be audited as part of the year end cash on hand reporting process.


NGC Customer Service Team:

  • The number for FSU is: 888-472-8747 and email is:
  • Client support will be available during the business hours of 8:30am – 6:00pm CT (9:30am – 7:00pm ET), Monday through Friday, except official University holidays.



National Gift Card Account Executive      

FSU Procurement Specialist

Nancy Knutsen (Primary)
779-994-4067 (Direct); 630-901-5659 (Cell); 888-472-8747 (Toll Free)

Jenny Schaefer (Secondary)

Karen Gibson

FSU Payables Contact:
Toia Furr


Contract Information

A competitively procured contract by University of California San Francisco RFP #FY2016-174 and Contract #C2017001SR.   

Term: Effective 7/1/2017 – 6/30/2022.