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Returning Christmas gifts? Here are 3 rules to follow

Bring your ID and save those receipts

Returning Christmas gifts? Here are 3 rules to follow
Returning Christmas gifts? Here are 3 rules to follow

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The shopping madness that is part of the holiday season is not over.

In fact, the three days after Christmas are estimated to land in the top 10 busiest days for retail traffic.

When you should hit the stores really depends on what you’re looking to buy or return.

When it comes to returns follow these three rules:

  • Don't open the box. Keep the original packaging intact otherwise retailers may charge you a restocking.
  • Keep those receipts. Having one will ensure you get a full refund otherwise, you'll likely get store credit.
  • Bring your ID. Some stores use computerized return systems that detect abuse, so you may be required to show identification

If you do need to make some returns, big merchants usually allow up to 90 days for most items to be returned, but they may have far shorter periods for certain goods so make sure to check that now. During the holidays, however, some retailers will extend their deadlines, often until late January.

If you’re looking to stock up on items like wrapping paper and Christmas décor for next year it’s recommended that you head to the sale racks immediately as there won’t be much of a selection if you wait.

Discounts on sweaters and other winter clothing are about 50%, similar to Black Friday, it’s best to wait till after January 1 for those deals. As for electronics hold off until the annual Consumer Electronics show the second week in January. That will help retailers decide which older products to discount.

About the Author:

Lauren Verno anchors the 9 a.m. hour of The Morning Show and is the consumer investigative reporter weekday afternoons.