7-Eleven Plays Santa for Time-Crunched Customers

DALLAS -- With less than a week before Christmas, convenience retailer 7-Eleven Inc. is offering gift solutions to on-the-go holiday shoppers that are both convenient, inexpensive and valuable.

"As always, most 7-Eleven stores will remain open around the clock throughout the end-of-the-year holidays," Alan Beach, 7-Eleven vice president of merchandising, said in a statement. "Historically, Christmas Day is one of the busiest shopping days at 7-Eleven. And one of the days we sell the most Big Bite hot dogs, too. Wow and ho ho oh thank heaven!"

One gift idea available at 7-Eleven stores is DVDs of "The Simpsons Movie," which garnered the chain loads of attention when it converted a dozen of its stores in North America to the series' Kwik-E-Mart convenience store. The suggested retail price is $21.99 for the DVD. Shoppers can also package the movie with a dozen pink Sprinklicious donuts that have returned to stores, the company reported.

For the third year, 7-Eleven has offered customers a chance to donate to the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital through the purchase of a plush teddy bear. This season, the black, curly-haired bear sports a green St. Jude logo monogrammed on his paw and a matching green ribbon around his neck, the company stated. For every bear purchased, 7-Eleven will make a $3 donation to St. Jude's, according to the company. While the bear is a gift all in itself, it can also serve as a gift-card holder, the company stated. The suggested retail price is $8.99.

For the gamers on the Christmas list, 7-Eleven stocks prepaid Nexon gift cards in $10 and $25 denominations for teens and 'tweens who play games such as MapleStory, Audition and KartRider, the company stated. Using the money, players can purchase items to customize their online characters.

7-Eleven's also offers two phone options through its proprietary SpeakOut Wireless Phone program. The latest program provides unlimited nationwide nights and weekends, 200 anytime minutes and 5-cent two-way text messaging for $40 per month. To add more minutes, $5 fill-up cards are available with 10-cent-per-minute rates for anytime voice calls, according to the company. Another wireless option is a prepaid program with a lower per-minute rate at 15-cents a minute for nationwide anytime calling and 365-day expiration.

Customers will also find wireless accessories including wireless phone chargers and a three-in-one cross-functional charger for wall, car, and 9-volt emergency charging in one device.

For music lovers, 7-Eleven's has selection of seven iPod accessories for $9.99. Items include FM transmitters, foldable speakers, a home and car charger, radio receiver and USB Cable, all of which are compatible with the new iPhones.

Customers that don't know what to get can find a solution with an expanded gift card selection featuring 20 different cards offering options for online music, game stores, electronics, department stores, electronics, sporting goods, home improvement, household stores, restaurants and entertainment. The cards are available in denominations from $7.99 to $50. The latest cards include a new "Black" 7-Eleven gift card with key fob functionality, a Gamestop $25 card and an iTunes $25 card.

7-Eleven is also offering an exclusive holiday music CD called "The Christmas Album," and features artists such as All-4-One, Fourplay, Al Jarreau, Natalie Cole and Vanessa Williams. Three other holiday CDs are available, including holiday hymns and carols by Willie Nelson, Amy Grant and "Christmas Classics on Piano." For every CD sold, a $1 donation will be made to the Feed the Children organization, the company stated.

Stores also stock Sonoma Crest Cellars, 7-Eleven's proprietary wine, for holiday celebrations. The wine -- created by a family-run winery in California's Sonoma wine country -- is available in three varietals -- chardonnay, merlot and cabernet sauvignon -- priced at $9.99.

For all the gifts, 7-Eleven offers gift boxes, bags and tags, as well as small stuffed animals to present gift cards. In addition, postage stamps and two sizes of bubble-wrap mailers are available for shipping gifts at some stores.
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