Tips to make your holiday gift returns quick and easy

If you didn't like the gift Santa gave you, you're not alone.

Americans return nearly $90 billion worth of gifts over the holiday season, and the day after Christmas is usually when shoppers make their returns.

Retail analysts suggest waiting a few days, or even next week to return those bad gifts.The bonus, experts said, is that there could more discounts if you hold off.

On Tuesday, ABC11 visited Crabtree Valley Mall where we found many shoppers who did not want to wait.

"We're headed out of town on the 28th, we'd just like to get it done," said Lindsey Danforth, whose husband was at Crabtree returning a few items while she shopped for ornaments.

Girlfriends Martika Leathers and Layonna Harris said their strategy to beat the crowds was to arrive when the mall opened at 10:00 a.m.

"We got here as soon as the mall opened," said Leathers. "Early bird gets the worm."

"So we can catch the sales still going on for Christmas," added Harris.

Here are some tips to make sure your returns are quick and easy:

First, make sure you check the company's return policy and deadline for returns. You may be eligible for returns with free shipping.

According to the National Retail Federation, more than a third of retailers offer free shipping on returns.

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For the most part, if you have a receipt or purchased with a debit or credit card, you'll receive a full refund. Some stores offer store credit.

At Target, if you have a receipt, items can be returned within one year. Unopened items in new condition may be returned within 90 days.

Most items sold at Toys "R" Us qualify for a 90-day return period. But items like cameras and video game hardware must be returned within 30 days.

Walmart's policy varies depending on the item. Some fall under a 15-day return window, while other items can be returned within 30 days.
Also, keep an eye out for sales. Many retailers are starting their post-Christmas sales.

You can expect major markdowns on bedding, electronics and exercise equipment.