3 On Your Side: Holiday Gift Return Advice

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jim-donovan-web Jim Donovan
Jim Donovan is a 13-time Emmy Award-winning consumer reporter w...
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By Jim Donovan

PHILADELPHIA (CBS)–Did you end up with a holiday gift that’s not exactly a perfect fit?  If so, you’d better pay attention to those return policies or you could get stuck with that gift.  As 3 On Your Side Consumer Reporter Jim Donovan finds, after the holiday shopping rush, comes the holiday return dash.

Not every gift is a perfect fit, and stores understand that.  Still, many retailers have adopted stiffer return policies that consumers encounter only once per year.  So it’s become even more crucial for consumers to read the fine print on a gift receipt before heading to the store.

– Consumer Reports suggests looking for the length of the return window, and whether holiday gifts get an extension.

– Certain items carry a restocking fee, common for electronics.

– And be mindful that some things like video games and movies can’t be returned once opened.

Target and ToysRUs have a 90 day return policy, although many electronics and computers have to be returned within 30 days.

Walmart’s 90 day return policy excludes some electronics computers too, they have to be returned by January 10th.  While big lawn care items must be brought back by January 25.

Best Buy gifts may be returned through January 15.

Kohl’s and Macy’s have no return deadline.  And Amazon?  Most items need to be returned within 30 days of delivery.

Kiplinger’s Personal Finance also reminds returning shoppers to bring their state-issued ID to the store.  A retailer may ask for it, especially if you don’t have the receipt.  It’s just one step stores are taking to identify repeat return offenders.

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