You Won’t Be Able to Return or Exchange Anything at Target for a While

Target shoppers will not be able to return or exchange their products as the company heightens its efforts to help halt the spread of the novel coronavirus.

The big-box retailer has issued a temporary ban on in-store product returns and exchanges for the next three weeks — a measure implemented in addition to its previously announced initiatives aimed at keeping workers and customers safe amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The disease has infected more than 75,000 people in the United States.

Target added that it would honor returns and exchanges that expire during that time, extending their return dates to three weeks past the holding period. It will also ask customers who bring in reusable bags to pack their own items at checkout, while paper and plastic bags will be available (with local fees waived).

“We’ll make all these changes easy for guests with clear signs throughout the store. Our team members will be there to assist and answer any questions,” CEO Brian Cornell said. “And as we’ve been doing for weeks, we’ll keep evaluating other options.”

Yesterday, Target said that it was expanding its hours of operation for its “most vulnerable” guests, including senior citizens and those with underlying health issues. Starting next week, the first hour of its stores’ openings on Tuesdays and Wednesdays will be reserved for such shoppers — in addition to Wednesdays as previously announced.

It also suggested, in a separate press release yesterday, that it would focus its business on providing food, medicine, cleaning products, pantry stock-up items and other products to customers. The Minneapolis-based retailer reported comps that have been up more than 20% so far in March: Although its apparel and accessories department is down 20%, the essentials as well as food and beverage categories have seen sales jump upwards of 50%.

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