Black Friday: Return policies, what to know before the big day

holiday packagesIt's easy to get drawn in by the crowds, rush and unbelievably low prices of Black Friday. But before shoppers go out spending hundreds on the big day, they should make sure that all Black Friday purchases are easy to return. Before hitting the stores on Nov. 26, double check the return policies at your targeted retailers.

Zappos and REI's return policies remain the same for any items purchased on Black Friday. A full refund to Zappos shoppers will be granted for any return within 365 days of the original purchase. Black Friday through Cyber Monday, Zappos will also offer a VIP membership for life. The membership guarantees free overnight shipping, an offer not usually available. REI continues to follow the 100% satisfaction guarantee return policy year round, including purchases made on Black Friday. Customers may return or exchange any item purchased at REI stores, website or REI outlets.

Target's return policy also remains the same for all items purchased on Black Friday. Any purchases may be returned within a 90-day window after the original buy, with a receipt. Shoppers without a receipt may return up to $70 of items within a one-year span. After the limit is reached, shoppers may exchange merchandise within the same department. No receipt is necessary for any purchase made with a credit card as workers can look up the transaction. Any purchases made on Black Friday will be refunded at the clearance price. A 15% restocking fee may be applied to some returned electronic items.

Sears stores extended the typical return policy for Black Friday and holiday shopping. Most purchases made between Nov. 11 and Dec. 12 may be returned for up to 120 days after the original purchase, a month longer than normal return period. Some items continue to have a shorter return time than most. The electronic return window has been extended from 30 to 60 days and fine jewelry must be returned within 90 days. Seasonal and holiday merchandise are excluded from the extended return window. Terms of the standard policy such as select no- returnable items, restocking fees and original packing rules do apply.

Like Sears, Walmart and Best Buy also have special holiday return policies that will benefit Black Friday shoppers. Return times for Items that normally have limited return windows, such as TVs, cameras, computers and DVDs, will be extended. When customers purchase these items between Nov. 15 and Dec. 25, the limited return period begins on Dec. 26. Anything purchased at Best Buy after Nov. 1 may be returned any time before Jan. 31 with the exception of computers that have a 14-day return window. These special policies for holiday shoppers will make Black Friday buys and returns simple and risk-free.
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