After the Christmas holidays are over, many people will be looking to return unwanted gifts. With the boom in online shopping, returning gifts has become even more complicated. The return of expensive electronic items has also become more restrictive.
To reduce the stress of returning items, first understand the return policy by asking yourself: 1) How long do you have to return an item? 2) Does the merchant only issue in-store credits? 3) Are there any restocking fees? 4) If the item is a gift, will the credit be credited to the donor or recipient’s account?
To get the most out of your return, consider the following tips:
- Receipts and ID required. Due to the increase in fraudulent returns, most stores require a receipt and valid photo ID in order to issue a refund or store credit.
- Bring a copy of the refund policy with you. Be sure to read the policy to understand the terms of a return, including time frames and location restrictions.
- Return electronic items first. These items often have more restrictions and a much shorter return window.
- Do not open the box. If you try to take back an item and the original packaging has been tampered with, stores may impose a restocking fee of 15% of the retail price. It has become more common when trying to return electronic devices.
- Discover the main online markets like eBay or Amazon. Instead of returning your gift, it may be more profitable to sell it, especially if the item’s packaging has not been opened or damaged.
- Non-eligible sale items. Keep in mind that regular return policies may not apply to sale or clearance items.
- Pantyhose shipping cost. Shipping charges may not be refunded and you may need to pay for return shipping.
- Make your returns after the rush. If you plan to return a gift in person, keep in mind that stores tend to be less crowded if you wait to make your gift returns after the post-Christmas sales.
To report a scam, go to the BBB Scam Tracker. To find companies you can trust, go to https://www.bbb.org.
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