Unofficial 'National Returns Day' means long lines

Posted at 5:49 AM, Jan 02, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-02 07:50:39-05

Thursday is expected to be one of the busiest days of 2020 for courier services. January 2 is unofficially dubbed “National Returns Day” by shipping giant UPS.

UPS, FedEx, and the U.S. Postal Service will process millions of unwanted Christmas gift returns. UPS forecasts their locations will handle 1.9 million packages on Thursday alone. That’s a 26% spike from last year and the seventh consecutive record showing consumers are doing more online shopping.

Brick and mortar stores usually have an 8 to 10% return rate, while Shopify reports online retailers have a 20% return rate.

NATIONAL NEWS | The latest headlines from across the country

Before you go, check the weight of your package. FedEx and UPS used to charge customers extra if their packages weighed over 70 lbs. Now, they’ve reduced that to 50 lbs. If it’s heavier than that, expect to pay $24 for shipping.

If you don’t feel like standing in line, see what you can do ahead of time or what you can do to avoid going into a store at all. FedEx and UPS have drop boxes you can use for small packages if the retailer already provided you with a return label or allows you to print one from home.

If you’re not near a UPS location, the company teamed up with retailers like Michael’s and CVS. Those stores are access points where you can drop off packages with return labels.

If you’re going with USPS, you don’t even have to leave the couch in some cases. You can print out a label and pay for postage at home and schedule a mail carrier to pick it up. Just make sure you have a box. But, if you’d rather do it in person, you can skip the line by using the self-service kiosks.