How to return Amazon items without problems

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Amazon

Buying items on Amazon is as easy as it sounds, but it’s not always that simple to return Amazon orders. So here are the best ways: whether you’ve made an impulse purchase on Prime Day or Black Friday or need to return an Amazon order without a box.

There are several ways to return items from Amazon, including gifts, damaged items, wrong clothing sizes, accidental purchases, or something you no longer want. You can easily do Amazon returns if you don’t have a printer, and in many cases you probably don’t even need a box or ribbon. Amazon lets select retailers do all the legwork for you.

How to return an Amazon order

Amazon

Amazon offers hassle-free returns on most items, but unsurprisingly, there are exceptions. As long as most things aren’t used and you haven’t damaged them, you’ll be fine.

However, you usually cannot return personalized items, products with security seals or opened hygiene products. You also cannot return digital goods such as e-books, subscriptions, or apps. And finally, most items are eligible for return within 30 days of delivery. Notes: Holiday returns have a longer grace period.

To get started, open Amazon and sign in to your account. Click on Returns and Orders, then scroll through your history and find what you want to return. From here, click Return or replace items, select a reason, choose between return or replacement, then you’ll choose a refund and delivery method, and you’re all set. Well, mostly.

Amazon return options
Amazons, Cory Gunther

Now you’ll need to re-tape it, print a label, schedule a pickup, or bring the package to a nearby location and ship it. What a mess. Did you know that Amazon offers many other options that are very easy?

Depending on your address, Amazon offers several free return options. Then, if they’re not available or you don’t want to drive to a nearby store, UPS can pick you up, but that will cost you. You will still need to complete the entire return process on the Amazon site, then choose your return method. Again, these options vary by location.

Free Amazon returns without a box at Kohl’s

Amazon returns at Kohl's
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Surprisingly, many still don’t know that you can quickly and easily return Amazon orders and items at a nearby Kohl’s department store. And you will be rewarded for doing so. According to Amazon, customers can head to one of more than 1,150 Kohl’s locations in 48 states and return items completely free, without a box.

Kohl’s will take your Amazon purchase, pack it for you, apply the label, and take care of everything. It’s that easy. Most Kohl’s locations will even give you a $5 gift card to use at their store. We’ve even heard reports of users receiving a one-time 25% discount off an entire purchase coupon just for making an Amazon return through Kohl’s. Remember that your mileage may vary on the coupon and Kohl’s excludes many popular items in their stores.

Still, driving to a nearby department store is better than finding a box, tape, and printer and driving to the nearest shipping center.

Hassle-Free Amazon Returns at The UPS Store

UPS Store Amazon Returns
Ken Wolter / Shutterstock.com

Like Kohl’s, Amazon has a partnership with The UPS Store that allows for similar hassle-free returns. You can return an Amazon order for free at more than 4,800 UPS stores nationwide, and again, you don’t need a box.

The UPS store says “most items” are eligible, but depending on the size, you may have to pay for the box. As you saw in our screenshot above, Amazon has several UPS-related options available. Be sure to choose whether you want home pickup or the free no-box option at a store near you.

Amazon will list all of your UPS Store options on the site, based on where you live.

Whole Foods Grocery Stores

Amazon Box Office at Whole Foods
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Amazon owns the popular Whole Foods supermarket chain for those who don’t know, and some stores can even handle Amazon order returns. It appears that only specific Whole Foods locations accept returns, but those that do may accept boxed or unboxed items, even without a label.

During the return process on the Amazon site, all Whole Foods options will be displayed. According to Amazon, only select stores can handle items without a box. However, most Whole Foods now come equipped with Amazon lockers out front, some have Locker+ options, and more are coming soon.

So, if your Whole Foods location doesn’t accept unboxed items, the site should provide you with options to place your order in a locker for easy, hassle-free returns.

Physical stores and Amazon lockers

amazon locker
Amazon

And finally, you can also return items at physical retail stores and select lockers. There are only about 50 Amazon Books or Amazon 4-Star locations in the US, so this option only applies to a select few.

However, Amazon lockers are popping up everywhere. You’ll find them at hotels, gas stations, grocery stores like Smiths, Vons, Whole Foods, and more, plus various other places in most cities.

According to Amazon, customers can easily return eligible books or items to these locations. During the return process on the Amazon website, you’ll get a code or QR code, and that’s all you need. Returns are free at AmazonFresh Pickup and Amazon Hub Locker + locations, but you’ll need to bring the items in a box or pack them yourself. Then enter the code in the locker, a slot will open and throw it inside.

Keep in mind that most lockers are relatively small, so if you have a larger item, Kohl’s or The UPS Store is a better option.


Sure, some of these methods are a bit tricky, but they’re still much better than before. It’s convenient to be able to ship a return, drive to a nearby location quickly, and get a refund without a printer or checkout.

So if you went a little overboard on Prime Day, bought something you don’t need, or want to return something purchased through Amazon, these are the best options.