Amazon is paying out instantly for all video game and video game accessory trade-ins. In the past, if you were trading in a video game you had to wait ten days (minimum) for Amazon to receive your game, make its assessment, and then give you your credit. Now as soon as you confirm your trade-in the money is yours! Here's how it works.
First you'll need to look up your item on Amazon. Let's say you want to trade in your copy of Sonic Boom: Fire & Ice having already beat the game. You'll do a quick search for it on Amazon and, when you see it listed in the results, on the right side of the listing you should see something that says "Trade in this game for an Amazon gift card." Click that sucker.
In the case of Fire & Ice, Amazon is currently offering up to $19.69. That's more than GameStop's offer of $17, so you're going to go for it. All you have to do is answer a few basic questions. Does the game work perfectly? Are there any scratches? Is anything missing? As long as everything is in order, you should be able to confirm your trade-in. At that point, you're instantly given the $19.69 in Amazon gift card credit. Amazon even gives you a pre-paid shipping label to print and use when you drop the game off at the UPS store.
There is a catch, though. If your game really isn't in perfect condition, and there are some scratches or missing components, Amazon will downgrade the trade-in value and charge you for the difference. That might not be a big deal with a $19 game where you lose a few bucks, but if you trade in a "perfect" condition PS4 that actually has been banged around, you could end up losing about $50 or more, so be careful about how quickly you spend your money.
Otherwise this is the perfect opportunity to get some spare cash for your holiday shopping. Or you can spend it on yourself! A Nintendo 3DS XL trades in for about $96, and the New 3DS will be on sale on Black Friday for $99, so you could essentially upgrade to a New 3DS for free by trading in. Looking to get a PS4 Pro? Your old 500GB PS4 could trade in for up to $170, bringing the price of the Pro down to about $230. These trade-ins could bring a lot of great hardware into impulse-buy territory, so start looking around your house or apartment and see what you wouldn't mind parting with!