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Selling coupons

Fatwaa ID: 612

السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته
What is the ruling on selling coupons for say 95% of their value? For example, if someone has a $100 coupon for only a specific store and they decide to buy/sell it for $95. Would this be impremissible, ie do coupons serve the same function as maal in this case despite them being limited? Jazakallahkhair

The coupons are something we use at my university, some people sell them.
They expire after one graduates, it can be spent at a pharmacy, a convenience store, a travel agent, a rent-a-car office and on-campus diners.

Some more detail for brother Vaso’s question:
The university gives each student a certain amount of coupons called “campus dollars” each semester. They cannot be redeemed for cash directly, and can only be spent at the vendors on campus as mentioned in the above message. They can be transferred between students. So some students sell their leftover coupons to other students who may have run out. Since the redeemability is limited to the campus only, their perceived value is less than the dollar equivalent. The question is whether it is permissible to buy or sell them at the market price, for e.g. $90 for $100 worth of coupons.

In the Name of Allaah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.
As-salaamu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullaahi wa-barakaatuh.

We take note of the details of your query. We understand that the coupon is issued by the university to provide students perks and discounts at select venues. It is not redeemable for cash nor is it regarded as a form of legal tender. Furthermore, this coupon expires. Accordingly, it will be permissible to sell the coupon in reference for less than its face value. This will not constitute ribaa.

It should be noted that this is different from selling pre-loaded gift cards at price other than its face value. You may refer to the following for details on that:

And Allaah Ta’aala knows best.
Mufti Muajul I. Chowdhury
Darul Iftaa New York

07/26/1444 AH – 02/17/2023 CE | AMG3-3373

وصل اللهم وسلم وبارك على سيدنا محمد وعلى ءاله وصحبه أجمعين


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