Celebrate 'National Returns Day' with friction-free gift exchang - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Celebrate 'National Returns Day' with friction-free gift exchanges

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BY MIKE BRUNKER, NBC News

(NBC News) - Happy National Returns Day, when too-tight pants, misshapen sweaters and self-help books are most likely to be dispatched back from whence they came.

The creation of UPS, the "holiday" is actually the busiest shipping day of the immediate post-Christmas/Hanukkah/Festivus season. Consumers are expected to ship more than a million packages back to retailers on Wednesday alone, and UPS expects to deliver more than 5 million return packages by the end of the first week of January -- - 500,000 more than last year.

UPS, which is celebrating its best holiday shipping performance after several years of snafus, says that even with all those returns -- a trend accelerated by the rise of online shopping -- the cycle of shopping continues on a smaller scale as those unwanted gifts make their way back onto the shelves.

A recent UPS Pulse of the Online Shopper study found that 45 percent of consumers say they have returned a gift directly to a retailer that originally sold it, but 42 percent of those said they made a new purchase during the process.

If you plan to celebrate National Returns Day by sending back an item or two, pay heed to the advice we published last week: Be sure to read the retailer's return policy to find out how long you have to send it back, whether you'll need a receipt, whether there are any restrictions, etc.

TODAY.com also got some advice from Retailmenot that may help make your return experience - whether online or in-store - friction free.

If you need some help with packing your gift before shipping, we've got you covered there as well with instructions on the "nesting" technique.

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