Return trip: local stores on the day after Christmas

By The Mercury

The day after Christmas is not just for enjoying your new gifts and finding any excuse to show them off. For many, it’s also a day for returning or exchanging the gifts you received that were just not quite what you wanted, and Monday was no exception here. 

Managers at Kmart, Hastings, Target and JC Penney all reported that business was heavier than usual Monday with customers either returning or exchanging unwanted gifts or redeeming their gift cards and taking advantage of post-Christmas sales.

Dustin DeWitt, manager at Kmart, said the turnout wasn’t quite what they were expecting but business was still better than last year. He said that they were expecting more exchanges in electronics, but that most returns seemed to be clothing pieces, a lot of which were just being exchanged for different sizes.

She also said employees saw a lot of Black Friday items returning, particularly the items that were cheap but not high in quality.

A manager at JC Penney echoed the sentiment that a lot of the returns were size-swapping, but, he said, for JC Penney, clothing returns are always the most common.

He theorized that people were generally happy with their gifts, but it was just the sizes that were the problem. He said that the day following Christmas has turned into a really great shopping day for customers, who can redeem their gift cards.

Dave Houston, a manager at Target, said the store had a lot of traffic on Monday because of holiday and sales clearance items, and that children’s toys and electronics were the main returns, since they were the highest sales areas for Christmas.

Not surprisingly, there was a high return of books and video games at Hastings, which also sells music, movies, electronics and miscellaneous items like posters and t-shirts. There, a manager said people were allowed to return items bought at other stores, so long as Hastings carries the item as well, which increased the number of returns.

She said on a normal day, the store’s refund report is generally two pages long, but it was 17 pages on Monday.

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