Returns and exchanges amount to year’s second busiest shopping day

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NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) – Holiday shoppers again packed area malls and specialty shops. Friday the focus was on returns and after Christmas sales.

WGNO’s Darian Trotter spoke to shoppers taking advantage of both opportunities.

Adults are off from work and kids are out of school.

It’s the day after Christmas and a perfect time to pack area malls, looking for deals, and returning that Christmas gift that wasn’t quite right. Such was the case Friday at Lakeside Mall in Metairie.

“We’re just hanging out at the mall. Enjoy the hanging out at the mall. Enjoying the little sales that are going on and got some shopping done here and its fun. It’s fantastic,” Sandy Vlackden said.

Shoppers who return items with gift receipts, in good condition, and with original packaging have an easier time at the register.

Retailers like it because, after returns most shoppers take advantage of the after Christmas sales.

“50% off deals, you shop around, buy one get one half all.”

Jane Maranto says she wasn’t especially pleased about the perfume her husband got her.

“I’m returning and I’m getting another kind,” she explained.

Cornell Hankton is getting a price adjustment on his purchase at Macy’s.

“When I bought it, it was one price. Now, I find out Macy’s have a sale on it. So, I’m coming back to get the difference,” Hankton said.

Consumers are winning; but there is a dark side for retailers.

The National Retail Federation estimates 3-point-8 billion will be lost to return fraud. It’s when stolen merchandise is returned without a receipt.

“Us taxpayers suffer for that, you know. We have to make up for that and the stores have to make up for it. It’s a loss for everyone really,” Vlackden said.

Shoppers who headed out to Lakeside Mall admit they couldn’t help but think about the deadly shooting at Oakwood Mall on Christmas Eve.

But they didn’t let it stop them.

“I’m happy to see that security is heightened everywhere and I mean it’s sad. It’s really sad,”Tabitha Wofford said. “It can happen anywhere and just pray to god it’s not going to happen again.”

The day after Christmas was projected to be the second busiest shopping day of the year behind Black Friday.

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