holidays

What You Need to Know Before Returning That Gift

NBCUniversal Media, LLC

Returns and exchanges are a natural part of the annual holiday gift-giving cycle since the perfect present doesn't exist.

It can be difficult or uncomfortable to return or exchange an unwanted item, especially if it was given to you, but the Better Business Bureau has some tips to make things easier.

Research returns before you buy at the store

Learn the ins and outs of a store's return policy and how they might change during the holiday season. Store policies are usually posted at the check-out counter or on the back of receipts.

Bring your ID when you make returns

Many stores are looking to stop scammers by asking for your ID and original form of payment when returning an item. If the item is a gift, you may need the assistance of the gift giver.

Always keep the receipt

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Hanging onto the receipt makes returns much easier. Some stores might require you to have the original packaging.

Don’t forget to include a gift receipt with a present

Make a possible return easier for your friends and family by including gift receipts when you give out the presents

Don’t put off returns or exchanges

Almost all stores have a window of time that they accept returns, and this could change depending on the time of the year. Don't procrasinate.

Make sure you understand online store return shipping policies

If you're buying something that is coming from another country, you really want to look at their return policies in terms of their shipping. Who's going to be responsible for that return shipping fee? If you become responsible for that shipping fee, it means you may be paying more for shipping than what the product was worth.

Electronics and appliances comes with different warranties

Most all electronics and home appliances have warranties that go through the manufacturer, not the retailer. Look up how returns or repairs are handled by the company you buy from before you purchase to make things easier down the road.

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