Is it safe to use Toys R Us gift cards this holiday season, after the company declared bankruptcy?

It's a rite of the holiday season: shoppers rushing the doors of Toys R Us on Black Friday.

But will those doors open this year, following the company's bankruptcy?

Some may be looking looking warily at the store, now that the retail giant (and its sister store, Babies R Us) has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Is using gift cards or creating baby registries still an option?

Store responds to concerns

The retailer says everything will be normal for the 2017 holiday season. It is reorganizing -- not going out of business, despite some online and Facebook rumors.

The chain is reassuring shoppers by saying:

  • All stores will be open this holiday season.
  • No store closings have been announced.
  • Gift cards will be sold and honored.
  • Return policies will not change.
  • Layaway will be open once again this holiday season.

Some short supplies possible

However, there is a chance you may find some expected items missing.

According to a report in the New York Post, some Toys R Us suppliers are holding back shipments until they get paid.

Reuters says makers of fidget spinners, slime kits and other novelty items are holding back sending new stock.

As a result, some shelves may be a bit emptier than usual this year.

So it's fine to give a gift card, but you may want to be sure that Junior uses it soon ... just in case.

To protect yourself with any retailer, use a gift card as soon as possible. Don't tuck it away in a drawer for months, where it may be forgotten.

That way you don't waste your money.

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