The season is supposed to be NOT about what you need or want only. Getting what you want should not be top on your agenda, but for too many of us, it is. A GIFT is something FROM a person to you, and when it's money that is just not really a gift. It's an excuse. I suppose that people don't like gifts anymore, so that is why the giftcard is better, so people can get what they WANT without actually seeing that they have traded someone's thoughfulness and choices to gift them with the actual money. You want the money option? Fine, then look at the cash. Look at the money. I find it insulting that you trust my taste so little that you don't want a gift, but whatever. Have the cash. I consider you a bit less human, respect you a bit less, and see you as a bit less mature for it, but have the money.
So, you NEED money or things? That isn't what a gift is about. A gift is supposed to have some meaning, not just be useful or how you supplement your budget.
If I'm on your list don't bother getting me giftcards unless it comes with a date to go WITH YOU to use them. I have had lots of fun when the person has gone with me to get something. I DID like that. I want experiences and/or something you want to GIVE me, not just your money. File this under another reason why I'm old.