Join the debate. Vote Now on the Dear Abby Poll of the week.

by Abigail Van Buren

Birthday Present Is a Bust When Spa Goes out of Business

DEAR ABBY: My question has to do with a present I bought for a friend's birthday. It was a gift certificate for a spa. Unfortunately, when she went to use it, the doors were locked and the place had shut down. I was very upset and embarrassed. Should I have replaced it even though I didn't have the money? -- UPSET AND EMBARRASSED

DEAR UPSET: You bought the gift certificate in good faith. It wasn't your fault that the spa went out of business, and you shouldn't feel guilty.

I do not think people should spend money they don't have, and you shouldn't feel obligated to do so. Explore any possible recourse for getting reimbursement for the gift certificate. If you paid for it with a credit card, your provider may credit you back the money.

Read more in: Etiquette & Ethics | Money | Holidays & Celebrations