A gift card caution after local salon closes without warning

CONCORD TOWNSHIP, OH– Closed for business….permanently.

It’s only been a few days since Jack Arra’s Salon and Spa in Concord Township abruptly shut its doors. There are delivered packages left untouched at the front door.

A patron told FOX 8  that she purchased a $200 gift certificate last Friday at the salon as a birthday gift to her son. Later the day, the business was no longer in business.

Sue McConnell, President & CEO of the Better Business Bureau in Greater Cleveland says, "Gift cards are also a risk at times because if the company that is going to honor the gift card abruptly closes you basically have a gift card that is probably worthless."

McConnell says consumers are simply stuck with a gift card that will most likely never be redeemed. But she says there may be other options.

"Sometimes a neighboring store in the same line of business may step up and say 'I'll honor them'," said McConnell.

And that’s exactly what’s happening at Oscar Giovanni Hair and Spa, just a stone’s throw away from its former competition.

Three stylists from the shuttered salon have now been hired here and a percentage of some gift cards from Jack Arra could be honored here.

Owner Oscar Flynn, in business now for twelve years, says it’s all about the local economy.

"This community has been pretty great to me, and the more business we attract to the area as well, is great. As far as the gift cards, I said I will leave it up to the ladies, I said I would take 50 percent of what the value is," says Flynn.

As far as the now defunct salon, the Better Business Bureau says if the owner sold the card knowing he would close later that day, the Ohio Attorney General could take legal action.

As for advice to consumers, McConnell says,"If you're going to buy a gift card, your best bet is to buy it from a local store that has been established for a period of time with a good reputation. If you receive a gift card, it's a good idea to redeem it as soon as you can."

Fox 8 reached out to the owner of Jack Arra’s for comment. Our calls were not returned.