Shoppers head back to area stores for returns, exchanges and post-Christmas sales

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Shoppers visit Parkway Place Mall the day after Christmas

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – Christmas dinner had barely been cleared away, when retailers headed back to work.

They were preparing for the crowds of post-Christmas shoppers. Many malls and larger stores opened early Friday.

Some shoppers came looking for deep discounts. Stores often slash prices by 30-70% after the holiday.

Other customers were in a hurry to return or exchange unwanted gifts.

A study by the National Retail Federation found the average person returned nearly four gifts last Christmas.

The NRF also found holiday return fraud will cost retailers $3.8 billion this year.

Because of this, many retailers require some form of identification before accepting returns.

In addition to bringing your ID, the Better Business Bureau has the following recommendations for a smoother return process:

  • Return the item as quickly as possible. Many retailers only allow returns within a certain time period. Remember, this ‘return clock’ usually starts when the item is purchased, not when it’s given.
  • Keep the packaging. Some stores will only accept an item if it’s in the original packaging.
  • Understand restocking fees. There can be restocking fees, especially for big-ticket items such as electronics.
  • Bring the receipt. Some stores will not accept returns or exchanges without one. Those that do will usually offer you the lowest mark-down price, not what the buyer originally paid. It’s also common for stores to refund gift receipts with store credit, rather than cash.


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