Family First » returning your gifts Servings Families Online since 1998 Fri, 02 Oct 2015 20:25:31 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Holiday Gift Returns Made Easy Mon, 26 Dec 2011 16:26:26 +0000 post thumbnail

The frenzy is over. The chaos complete. Now, comes the returns…

For most stores, they try to make returning as easy as possible. Here are the top retailers and their return policies made simple:


You have 90 days for most items to be returned in new and unused condition. The website states that if you have an item bought through the mail, you need to have the original packaging and accessories packed with the item. Of course, there are exceptions and you should check the receipt for specific instructions.

For certain items, you only have 45 days – Computer Hardware like tablets and eReaders, camcorders and cameras, gift cards, prepaid cell phones, or any other prepaid cards such as those for music or games.

NON-RETURNABLE ITEMS include: music, movies, video games and software. These items may be exchanged.

If you bought an item on-line, you can, in most cases, return it to the store as long as you have the packing slip or the credit card used for purchase.

If you return something you were given as a gift and don’t have a gift receipt or packing slip, you will be given a Target gift card for most items. Some exceptions apply – you’ll need to check with the store.

Please check the Target Return Policy website for further details.


With Walmart, you also have 90 days to return items.  They have extended their return policy for Christmas. Any exception that normally has a 15 or 30 window purchased from November 1st to December 24th will be counted from December 26th forward, not the date of purchase.

These items include TVs, computers, camcorders, digital cameras, digital music players, e-tablets, e-readers, portable video players, GPS units, video game hardware, pre-paid cell phones, and post-paid cell phones.

If you bought an airbed (maybe for a visiting relative) and decide to return it after it was used, you can only get another airbed or equal or greater value so it’s probably best to keep it. If the airbed was defective, you have 90 days to return it.

If you bought someone a swimming pool, chainsaw or compressor (among other like items), you only have 30 days to return those items.

You have 90 days to return music, movies and games if they haven’t been opened for either a refund or an exchange.

If you got anyone a tree, shrub or perennial, you have one year to either get a refund or an exchange on that.

Walmart will give refunds without a receipt – for items $25 and under, you can get cash. For items over $25, you get a Walmart shopping card of the value of the item or you can do an even-up exchange.

You can return 3 items within a 45 day period. If you try to return more than that within that time frame, you’ll get flagged and a manager will have to approve the transaction.

Please check Walmart’s Return Policy page for more details.

Best Buy

Best Buy is also offering extended holiday returns through January 24th, 2012. Of course, their normal stipulations apply such as non-returnable items so please check their policies specifically if you have a question.

You must have a receipt, gift receipt or packing slip and if you are returning to a store, a photo id is required for all returns.

You have 14 days for items such as desktop and notebook computers, tablets, monitors, projectors, camcorders, digital cameras, radar detectors, DJ equipment and lighting, pro audio and home recording equipment.

All other items are allowed 30 days for returns, unless you are a member of their Reward Zone® Premier Silver program and then you are lucky enough to have 45 days.

They have a long list of restricted items you cannot return, such as the soda you purchased after standing in line to check out. You also can’t return earbuds, microphones or harmonicas, understandably. If you lost pieces, broke something or had something etched or personalized, you will not be able to return it.

Like the others, you cannot return opened music, movies or games but you may exchange them for a like item.

Again, please check the returns website for specifics on any items you might be wondering about.

Happy Return Shopping!

Marijo Tinlin is the Editor in Chief of Family First, one of the oldest family-oriented websites on the internet. She is also the author of the new book about patriotism and teaching our children to love this country. It’s called “How to Raise an American Patriot, Making it Okay for Our Kids to Be Proud to Be American” and features 13 interviews with patriotic Americans including Ed Meese, Erick Erickson and Jackie Gingrich Cushman. It’s available at

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