I somewhat agree with the "cop-out" concept. It is true, that if you don't know someone well enough, you'd probably get them something generic, like a GC. At the same time, even if it is someone you know, a GC is not such a bad idea. I personally like receiving GC's since I can get what I want, when I want. How many times have you had that gift you thought you'd try out some day, but it's still sitting in the box back inside the closet? Stores like CVS, Walgreens, or most large grocery stores make it easy to pick up almost any GC you can think of. I would have to say a GC is a little more personal than say one of those one-time credit cards, or a check. At least you hopefully know what store they like to shop at.