4 Walmart Return Policy Tips To Keep In Mind
Founded in July 1962, Walmart has grown to be one of the largest companies in the world by revenue and a staple in the United States. As common as shopping at Walmart is, the need to return an item is also normal.
Familiarize yourself with Walmart’s return policy for a smoother process if you purchase something you don’t need or find to be defective later.
Walmart’s Holiday Return Policy
Thanks to deep discounts on popular products, Walmart is a popular holiday shopping hub. On the other hand, with limitations on return windows, you want to shop for gifts at the right time of the year.
The new Walmart return policy for holiday purchases states that the company will accept gift returns until Jan. 31. Walmart will only accept holiday returns if you purchase the items between Oct. 1 and Dec. 31, and any items purchased before Oct. 1 are subject to the standard return policy.
Walmart’s Standard Return Policy
The Walmart return policy stipulates that you typically have 90 days to return items, though there are some exceptions. These tips will help you understand the ins and outs of returning items to Walmart.
1. Understand Walmart’s Electronics Return Policy
Electronics are one exception to Walmart’s standard return policy. Shoppers must return their electronic purchases within 30 days of the purchase date to qualify for a refund, and you must have your receipt. These include but are not limited to:
- Cell phones
- Digital cameras
- Digital music players
- PC components
- Portable video players
- GPS units
Prepaid cell phones have a shorter return period than other electronics — they must be returned within 14 days for refund or exchange.
Good To Know
A few other items have return timeframes that differ from both the electronics and standard return policies. Notably, hearing aids and prescription glasses or contacts must be returned within 60 days with the receipt for an exchange or refund.
2. Keep Your Receipt
You can return many items to Walmart without a receipt, but it is subject to a verification process. If you don’t have your receipt, Walmart may be able to look up the transaction if you have the debit card, credit card, email or phone number associated with the purchase.
If Walmart is not able to find your transaction, you can only get a cash refund on items under $10 and will receive a Walmart gift card for items worth more than $10.
To return electronics or anything else that has a return window other than the standard 90 days, you must have the receipt.
3. Know What You Can’t Return
Although you can return most items to Walmart, the policy has some exclusions. In particular, the company won’t accept the following items as returns:
- Firearms and ammunition
- Pepper spray
- Certain medications
- Gas-powered vehicles
- Gift cards
- Diabetic supplies — unless defective
- Test kits
- Used tires
- Precious metals
- Trading cards
- Hygienic medical equipment
If your item is not on the list above, chances are you’ll be able to return it, as long as you meet Walmart’s timeframe requirements. It’s important to know, however, that some items are only eligible for exchange, not a refund — like open drones, cell phones and air mattresses.
4. Understand Holiday Return Exceptions
Walmart’s holiday return policy applies to all items traditionally eligible for a return, regardless of the typical timeframe requirements. However, there are some exceptions.
Any item excluded from Walmart’s standard return policy — like firearms, trading cards and the other items listed above — are also excluded from the holiday return policy, regardless of whether you purchased them as holiday gifts or standard purchases.
Walmart’s Marketplace Returns
You can return Walmart marketplace purchases as long as you do so within 14 or 30 days of receiving the product. The 14-day return policy applies to electronics and luxury items, while the 30-day return policy applies to all other return-eligible products.
There are some limitations. You may have to pay for shipping when you return a marketplace item. Moreover, marketplace returns have similar exclusions to in-store ones, so you won’t be able to return used tires, gas-powered vehicles, firearms or other items on the exclusion list.
The good news is that you won’t pay restocking fees. Walmart removed those from marketplace returns in 2019.
How To Return an Item to Walmart
You have three options to return an item to Walmart:
- Bring the item you plan to return to the customer service desk at your local Walmart location.
- Contact Walmart customer support to return products you purchased online by mail.
- Take advantage of Walmart’s curbside returns.
Exchanges and Refunds
You can exchange any product you purchased at Walmart for a similar item as long as you do so within the company’s return timeframes.
If you’d like a refund on your purchase, Walmart will apply the refund to your original form of payment. That means you can only return an item for cash if you paid for that item in cash. If you don’t want the money for the purchase returned to your original payment method, you can do a return without the receipt and receive cash for purchases under $10 or a Walmart gift card for purchases over $10.
You can return the vast majority of items you purchase at Walmart easily. The same goes for gifts you receive from people who purchased them at Walmart. Need to return something now? Go to your local store or call customer service to start a return that falls within these guidelines.
FAQFind the answers to the most common questions about Walmart's return policy below.
- What are the rules for returns at Walmart?
- The general rule of thumb for returns at Walmart is that you can return your items within 90 days of the transaction for a full refund. On the other hand, some items have shorter return cutoff times, and there are exclusions to consider.
- What items cannot be returned to Walmart?
- Although you can return most items to Walmart, the rule has some exceptions. For example, you won't be able to return firearms, ammunition, used tires and other items listed above.
- Can you still return items to Walmart without a receipt?
- You can return most items to Walmart without a receipt, but a manager must verify the return, and you'll only receive cash for items valued under $10. Any items falling outside the standard 90-day return policy also require a receipt to return.
Information is accurate as of Nov. 17, 2022, and is subject to change.
Editorial Note: This content is not provided by any entity covered in this article. Any opinions, analyses, reviews, ratings or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author alone and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any entity named in this article.
Our in-house research team and on-site financial experts work together to create content that’s accurate, impartial, and up to date. We fact-check every single statistic, quote and fact using trusted primary resources to make sure the information we provide is correct. You can learn more about GOBankingRates’ processes and standards in our editorial policy.
- Fortune. "Walmart."