The Best Return Policies

As you get older, you learn things about yourself. And I, have learned one very important thing about myself and my shopping habits … it’s about return policies.

I’m pretty strategic about the things I buy. I research, I price compare, I hold my breath, and save. When it comes time to spend my hard earned money I want my purchase to be quality. If something goes wrong, or if it arrives and isn’t what I expected, I want to be able to return it. And if it breaks after normal wear within a reasonable about of time – you better believe I get in touch with the store. And no, I don’t want there to be a 30 day limit or a “you must have your receipt, tracking number, thumb print and firstborn child” as evidence that I indeed purchased it and should be allowed a refund in my original form of payment. 

I could share some pretty sad stories of returns gone bad. But, instead, I figured I’d highlight the winners out there! Positivity folks, it goes a long way! These shops will receive my business again and again because they’ve got one thing figured out right, and that’s customer service! I heart them big time and I know you will too. Shopping with peace of mind, especially around the holidays, is a big deal – so check those return policies and shop responsibly :) 

The Best Return Policies-2

First up … Costco! This probably comes at no surprise. I think it is pretty well known that Costco has a divine return policy. They’ll take back anything. There is a window for electronics, but that makes sense. Although, they do waiver on that it seems. I know from experience since our XBOX 360 debuted the star of death about a year after buying it. Simplest exchange ever. Thank you, Costco. I’ve also returned a couple food products that have expired before their expiration date without a problem. Don’t have a Costco near you? No problem, is great too!

Nordstrom. Oh, Nordstrom how I adore you. They may just be better than Costco, maybe. Example 1 – On our honeymoon, Dominic packed his bottle of cologne. It leaked. Everywhere. When we were back home I visited Nordstrom and explained. They offered to exchange it for a full bottle. And, they said next time we traveled to just pop in and ask for a sample spritzer to avoid future problems. Awesome, right? Most recently, I returned a pair of pants that stretched too much between washes leading me to need a different size. These were definitely worn, but they understood and were happy to swap me out sizes. 

Best of all, over Black Friday there was a sale on an item I had purchased the previous week. I live chatted them through their website and they credited me the 20% savings! I didn’t even have to visit the store with the item to save money. Yep, Nordstrom lover for life right here.

Similar to Nordstrom is Anthropologie. I don’t frequently shop there, and when I do, it’s always part of a big sale. My favorite being when they have an extra 50% off sale items. Over they years though I have accrued a handful of clothing and housewares. Last year I had a quilt get really lumpy in the wash. I think it was my fault :( I had previously washed it in a front loader and without thinking washed it in a top loader with a middle post thing. It ruined it. I was heartbroken. They no longer had the same style in stock, but after I explained my misfortune they looked up my purchase on my Anthro card (not a credit card, just the club card) and refunded me! When they had another sale I was able to pick out a new duvet. They told me there policy was “anytime, any reason”, or something to that tune. Which. Is. Amazing.

— 2018 Update — So sad that many Toys R Us locations are going out of business! Here’s to hoping Target gets a little more return friendly!

Lastly, let’s talk about baby registries. If you can, avoid Target. They’ve got the most strict return policies with day/amount limits and all that jazz. Toys R Us and Babies R Us on the other hand, has a much looser policy. As long as the item is in stock and you’ve got your ID, they happily accept returns. Usually on a gift card if you don’t have the receipt, but that’s fine by me! Mamas can always use a little extra money for birthdays, Christmas, and baby supplies, right?

Are you a stickler for customer service issues like return policies? Where have you had good experiences?

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  1. says

    Yes, I definitely check returns policies before making purchases. Being an international buyer, the time limits are something I take particular attention to. There is no point in a 30 return policy if it takes that long to get here.

    • Gretchen says

      International is a whole new ball game I’d guess!