MIAMI (CBS4) – Retailers are hoping for another Black Friday like bump as thousands of bargain hunters hit the mall to use their holiday gift cards, search for heavily discounted deals and return unwanted gifts.
Nearly 40-percent of us will return holiday gifts this year. But some shoppers will find it tougher to get rid of those unwanted presents this year because many stores have tightened up their return policies.
The National Retailer Federation said 13% of retailers have tightened their rules this year on returning items that are not defective. Many stores have also shortened their return periods.
At Target, you will now have 45 days to return computers, camcorders, and cameras.
Best Buy shortened its return deadline by a week, giving you just 14 days to return certain items. Toys ‘R’ Us shortened electronics returns by 45 days and you can now only return unopened electronics.
At Sears you now have 30 days to return electronics and 60 days to return fine jewelry.
Some retailers, like Amazon.com have different policies depending on the product you bought. Amazon alone has 30 different policies.
Also, some retailers are getting tougher about tags. You will only be able to return many garments to JC Penny, Express, and Macy’s if the tags are still on them.
Some stores, like Sports Authority will not accept returns in person, if the items were bought online. You’ll have to return them through the mail. If that gift you’re returning was bought on sale, the return policy may not apply.
Also, don’t assume you’ll get cash back for your gifts. Many stores will give you only store credit. But of course you have many options besides returning a present you don’t want. You can re-gift it, swap your present with someone, or you can take your unwanted gift and do some good with it by donating it to charity.