(Karen_Chappell)

7 Roadblocks To Returning Gifts

Sure, right now is the season of gift-giving. But soon enough, we’ll change gears and consumers will be lined up to return some of the things they’ve been given. So there are some things you should be aware of before Dec. 26. [More]

Nothing says "I just realized today is Feb. 14" like a pink stuffed bear.

Forget Christmas. This Kmart Has Already Moved On To Valentine’s Day

By now, you’re all familiar with Christmas Creep, the insidious inching of the holiday shopping season earlier and earlier into the year. But there’s a lesser-known holiday creep that is already showing up on the shelves of at least one retailer. [More]

Postal inspectors are using photocopies and scans of packages to figure out which items are missing.

Hundreds Of FedEx Packages Missing After Driver Kicks Them Out Of His Truck

If you live in the area of Papillion, Nebraska, and you’ve been waiting on a FedEx package for a couple weeks now, you’re not alone, after a driver for the delivery service decided to simply dump hundreds of parcels in the road. [More]

(Plaszloc)

Here’s Another Reason To Avoid Giving Gift Cards

By this point, we’ve probably all given or received gift cards during the holidays. But most consumers don’t know how easy it is for scammers to steal value from these cards, and what a pain in the butt in can be to get that money back. [More]

(analogkid281)

Home Depot Glitch Gives Unexpected Gift To Online Shoppers — Free Orders

If you were doing some shopping on HomeDepot.com yesterday morning, you should check your order summary because you might have been the beneficiary of an oopsy by the home improvement retailer that allowed some customers to place orders they didn’t get charged for. [More]

(frankieleon)

1-In-5 Americans Dreads Buying Gifts For The Holidays

If you’re avoiding looking at the calendar because you have yet to buy anyone on your list a gift this holiday season, you’re not alone. According to a new poll, a full 20% of U.S. shoppers simply dreads the experience of gift-buying at this time of year. [More]

No more e-mail customer service for Best Buy.

Best Buy No Longer Wants Customers Contacting It By E-Mail

Best Buy has never been the best at dealing with customer e-mails, but rather than invest in improving that facet of customer service, the retailer has decided to pull the option from its contact form on its customer service page. [More]

Not the Santa from this story.

‘Bad Santa’ Isn’t As Fun In Real Life, Gets Fired From Mall Gig

Dealing with throngs of little kids, parents, and holiday shoppers must require a high annoyance threshold, but one mall Santa in Maine is without a job because he apparently missed the memo mandating that Old Saint Nick be “jolly.” [More]

(mandyann74)

These Best Buy Customer Service E-Mails Would Be Hilarious If They Weren’t Real

On Thanksgiving, Consumerist reader Tom tried to buy a TV combo deal from Best Buy. This was just the beginning of a trip through a parallel universe where orders turn into ghosts that charge your credit card and customer service reps repeatedly use the phrase “Good day!” while reminding you of your duty to check BestBuy.com more frequently. [More]

(Alan Rappa)

New Survey Shows Why Amazon Has Bricks-And-Mortar Retailers Worried

Many bricks-and-mortar retailers claim Amazon has an unfair advantage because it is not — in most states — yet required to collect sales tax on purchases, or that Amazon can offer huge discounts because it doesn’t have the overhead associated with running a retail store. But a new survey shows that people might just like Amazon more than other retailers. [More]

(lungstruck)

JCPenney Was Fastest To Answer Customer Calls On Black Friday Weekend; Costco Slowest

With Black Friday weekend being the busiest shopping spurt of the year, it’s also the time when customers call up retailers to complain or ask questions. But a new survey of 25 top retailers shows that consumers waited anywhere from 22 seconds to 12 minutes just to speak to customer service. [More]

(bclinesmith)

Shoppers Are Not So Thrilled That Toys R Us Is Cancelling Orders And Not Answering Calls

Toys R Us went after customers in a big way this holiday weekend, opening early on Thanksgiving to compete with Walmart and Target, and offering deep discounts on coveted items. But the company may have overextended itself, as shoppers are complaining about canceled orders and having to wait ridiculously long times just to speak to a human. [More]

Youtube

Why I Left Best Buy After Waiting In Line For Two Hours On Black Friday

Like many people in his Connecticut town, Consumerist reader RC thought he would pop by Best Buy when it opened at midnight on Black Friday to see if he could land a deal. But either the store management grossly underestimated how many customers would show up or they have no idea how to manage the checkout process. [More]

(Alan Rappa)

Remember To Send Us Your Black Friday Photos And Horror Stories

Given the sheer number of people who will be out and about this weekend, it’s inevitable that some of you will have experiences ranging from the ridiculous to the horrifying to the horrifyingly ridiculous. But don’t just keep them to yourself, share them with Consumerist. [More]

(Wayne Gunn)

7 Things To Keep In Mind When Shopping This Weekend

Though some of us plan on spending this holiday weekend the traditional way — hiding in our room, away from the shame of being caught drinking directly from the gravy boat — some of you will be out shopping and spending. And like any risky expedition, it’s best to go into Black Friday sales fully prepared. [More]

(Spidra Webster)

Calculate The True Cost Of Credit Card Purchases Before You Buy

This is good advice any time of the year, but since many of us are about to launch into spending sprees in the oncoming days, it’s as good a time as any to remind shoppers to think long-term about how much they are actually going to pay for an item purchased with a credit card. [More]

(Great Beyond)

Small Businesses Hoping To Cash In On Big Box Stores’ Early Black Friday Openings

While Walmart, Target and other huge national retailers make the headlines every year for opening earlier and earlier for their Black Friday sales, a growing number of small businesses are following suit in the hopes of picking up the stragglers who are looking for things other than $79 laptops. [More]

(Courtesy Change.org)

3 Reasons Why 350,000 Signatures On A Petition Won’t Change Target’s Mind About Opening On Thanksgiving

For the second year in a row, a Target employee has managed to secure hundreds of thousands of names on a petition asking Target to rethink its plans to start its Black Friday sale on Thanksgiving night. And for the second year in a row, Target is politely declining the suggestion and moving ahead as planned. [More]