Stores prepare for returns after the holiday

Author: Tim Pulliam, General assignment reporter, tpulliam@wjxt.com
Matt Kinzig, Photojournalist, weekend assignment editor, mkinzig@wjxt.com
Published On: Dec 25 2013 07:45:42 PM EST   Updated On: Dec 26 2013 07:17:49 AM EST
Holiday shopping returns
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -

To keep or not to keep? That is the question many are asking as stores and consumers are preparing to tackle the long-standing issue of gift returns.

Some retailers like Wal-Mart are opening as early as 5 a.m. Thursday with bargains aimed at getting you in the doors. Some have even prepared for those holiday returns, which shoppers say is just part of the season.

Thursday will be another busy day for retailers, but this time with two types of shoppers.
Those looking for even bigger discounts along with folks trying to get rid of their Christmas gifts.

"I believe that if you have something that you know that you are not going to use, you should return it," says shopper Bettie Mcleod. 

But don't be surprised if there's a bit of a hassle.
According to the National Retail Federation, retailers expect to lose $3.4 billion dollars from returns this holiday season.
In an effort to fight frivolous returns and fraud, Marketing professor Miro Copic says some retailers are creating a database for "chronic returner's."

Copic said, "Stores now require you to show ID. If you've returned over a certain number of items over say a 90 day period or 120 day period, the next time you won't be able to return."

Some shoppers say that those policies are unfair.

Copic says the measure could stop thieves from returning stolen merchandise and creating new price tags in order to receive bigger refunds.

Analysts say retailers may also have shorter time periods to return items and there may even be a restocking fee.

The best thing to do is before going to the store, review the return policy either online or on the receipt.