As the coronavirus pandemic rages on, Target is joining Walmart and will close on Thanksgiving Day.
Businesses and local governments have enacted policies to limit large crowds to prevent the spread of COVID-19. But retailers are determined to make holiday lucrative for their bottom lines — storeowners are launching holiday deals earlier than ever and making digital a priority.
“The investments we’ve made in our business and our team have enabled us to move with flexibility and speed to meet guests’ changing needs during this global pandemic,” said Target CEO Brian Cornell in a statement. “This year, more than ever, a joyful holiday will be inseparable from a safe one, and we’re continuing to adjust our plans to deliver ease, value and the joy of the season…”
While it will be closed on Thanksgiving, Target said it will launch holiday deals — both in store and online — in October, earlier than ever before.
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Target’s move follows Bentonville, Ark.-based Walmart’s announcement last week that it would keep all U.S.-based Walmart outposts dark on Thanksgiving Day. Sam’s Club locations will also be shut for the day, as they have in previous years.
“We know this has been a trying year, and our associates have stepped up. We hope they will enjoy a special Thanksgiving Day at home with their loved ones,” Walmart U.S. president and CEO John Furner said in a statement. “We are certainly thankful to our people for all of their efforts.”
For Walmart, Target and many other retailers, Thanksgiving had become a prime shopping day, with consumers rushing out to get deals as a post-Turkey tradition. Even before the coronavirus dramatically impacted shopping traditions, many retailers made the decision to close to give their employees the day off.