Best Buy Return Policy: 8 Things You MUST Know (Plus a Few Hacks Too!)

Updated September 16, 2021 by Kyle
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I’m not gonna lie, the Best Buy return policy is kind of confusing. Different lengths of time to return stuff, different ways to return items, and some products that you flat-out can’t return. Because of all these factors, I figured it was time to put the fingers on the keyboard and straighten it all out for my readers. Here’s everything you need to know about their return policy, plus a few hacks to make it work even better.

Best Buy Return Policy: 8 Things You Need To Know

Holiday Policy Update:

Best Buy has extended their return policy for items purchased between October 13, 2020 – January 2, 2021.

You now have until January 15, 2021 to exchange these items.

How Does the Best Buy Return Policy Work?

Here’s the skinny so you can actually make the Best Buy return policy work for you.

In-Store Return – You can return an item bought at Best Buy or BestBuy.com directly to any brick & mortar location.

To make the return go smoothly bring in your receipt or packing slip, the credit card used, and a valid photo ID.

Return by Mail:

Do-It-Yourself – You pick the carrier, use the included Return Form on your packing slip, and pay for the shipping yourself.

No packing slip? Print this blank one and fill it out. Refund will be processed with 2-3 business days of receiving your item.

Use the Prepaid Return LabelPrint a prepaid return label, pay nothing upfront, and send your item back to Best Buy for a refund via UPS.

Expect the cost of the return shipping to be deducted from your refund unless the return is a result of a Best Buy error.

To avoid any possible return shipping fees, it’s definitely worth the effort to try and make your return in-store.

See Also: The Best Buy Price Match Policy: Tips To Help You Save BIG

How Many Days Do I Have to Return Something?

Cell Phones and Devices with a Carrier Contract – 14 days for everyone.

Wedding Registry Items – 60 days from date of purchase.

Everything Else (like 99% of the stuff they sell) – 15 days for regular Best Buy customers. 30 days for Best Buy Elite members. 45 days for Elite Plus members.

In case you were wondering, and who wasn’t, a Best Buy Elite (and Plus) membership is earned via their free Rewards Program.

You have to spend at least $1,500 for Elite status in a calendar year and at least $3,500 for Elite Plus.

How Do I Return a Gift to Best Buy?

If you return a gift bought at Best Buy by walking into a physical store, you’ll get store credit for the purchase price.

For gifts returned via mail, they’ll credit the gift purchaser and notify them via e-mail.

What Can’t I Return to Best Buy?

There are some products you can’t return to Best Buy. Here they are:

Final Sale Items – These are clearance products marked as “Final Sale”. If you’re not sure if item is Final Sale, ask an employee before you purchase it.

Special Orders – You’ll only get 85% of the original price refunded. These are items that are typically ordered directly from the manufacturer and not stocked by Best Buy.

Digital Content – This includes games and software that can be downloaded.

Prepaid Cards – This includes prepaid cards from Nintendo, AT&T, Verizon, eBay, and Disney.

Gift Packaging – Pretty obvious. This would be really hard to return.

Membership Costs – This includes the annual Geek Squad membership. Update: Thanks to employee Kristy who says Geek Squad memberships can be returned within 14 days of purchase. After that they will pro-rate it.

Completed Services – This refers to services that Geek Squad has completed for you.

Opened consumable items – This includes batteries, ink and 3D printer filament, and items returned that are damaged, unsanitary or missing major parts.

See Also: Newegg Return Policy: A Very Complicated Policy That We Make Sense Of

Do I Have to Pay Re-Stocking Fee on Certain Items?

Yes, unfortunately you’ll have to pay a re-stocking fee on these items.

DSLR Cameras and Lenses – 15% re-stocking fee.

Smartphones – $45 flat re-stocking fee.

Drones – 15% re-stocking fee.

Projectors – 15% re-stocking fee.

Rideables – 15% re-stocking fee.

Special Order Products – 15% re-stocking fee.

What If I Don’t Have a Receipt?

If you don’t have a receipt, be prepared to show a valid ID when returning something to Best Buy.

They do this to try and cut down on return fraud in their stores.

They reserve the right to refuse any return without a receipt if they feel it’s fraudulent.

See Also: 7 Insider Tips to Save Money at Best Buy

What If My Return Has Been Opened?

No worries, just pack everything back up as well as you can and get a full refund as long as your still within the return period.

Make sure you don’t forget any manuals or instructions that can with the item.

What If My Return is Missing Parts?

Don’t let that stop you from returning something to Best Buy.

From their site, “If you do not have all the original packaging or accessories, that’s okay too. We can process a return with a nonrefundable deduction on your refund for what is missing.”

What About a Cash Refund?

Keep in mind that if you pay with cash, and your order is over $800, you’ll have to settle for a corporate check as a refund.

You’ll get the check in the mail within 7-10 days.

Stores don’t keep a lot of cash on hand and so they won’t be able to refund you with cash.

The same applies when you spend $250 by check or by a debit card without a major credit card logo.

Can I Return Refurbished Items?

Yes.

The regular return policy applies to refurbished, open-box, and pre-owned products.

Can I Return an Unopened Video Game?

I had someone in the comments ask if they could return an unopened video game they bought 2 months ago.

I wasn’t sure of the answer so I hit up Best Buy Live Chat and was told YES, it’s returnable for store credit since it is unopened.

I then asked if the original purchase of 2 months ago would be a problem and was surprisingly told…NOT a problem.

What if I Used a Gift Card to Make the Purchase?

Not a problem. If you bought the item with a Best Buy gift card, you’ll get a full refund back to that same gift card.

If you don’t have the gift card anymore, no worries, just call Best Buy at 1-888-237-8289 with your order number and they’ll re-issue you a new gift card.

BONUS: Best Buy Return Policy “Hacks”

Like any store’s return policy, there are some clover hacks and tips that savvy shoppers need to be aware of.

Over 15 Days Hack – If you have your receipt, but it’s been over 15 days since you made the purchase, you’re often better off returning the item without your receipt and accept the store credit.

Look for Extended Holiday Return Time – In past years, almost anything bought in November and December could be returned right up until January 31st.

This Holiday return policy extends until January 30th for Elite members and February 14th for Elite Plus.

Best Buy’s Error? – If you’re returning something to Best Buy via mail, and the reason for the return is an error on Best Buy’s part, they’re on the hook for the return shipping charges.

Always Opt For In-Store Return – When returning an item bought from BestBuy.com, always return it to your local store if you can.

Not only will you avoid any return shipping charges, but you can also take advantage of an instant exchange.

Ask the Reader: Have you had success taking advantage of Best Buy’s return policy? Any issues I need to add to this post that I may have overlooked?


By Kyle James

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Kathy

I bought a Samsung washer it doesn’t work right. It leaks also. its been a little over 30 days I think. Can I still return it and how?

Roy A

Do you know why Best Buy doesn’t give you a cash refund when you purchased something with a debit card???

Mike Martinez

I purchased a Samsung curved 1080p HD monitor from best buy 20 days ago and I went in last night to return it. I was looking for higher resolution for my mac on my monitor and was told I only had 15 days to return it. I had no idea, I guess since I don’t shop Best Buy too often and sent my receipt to my email I didn’t pay attention and was not told about this 15 day policy. Every other place I buy electronics TV’s, Computers, Speakers I have at least 30 days to return. They basically said sorry we can’t help you. I now have a $350 monitor that I don’t like and I’m pretty much stuck with. I purchased a 4k monitor somewhere else and it works great and is just what I was looking for. Any way around this return policy? If not it’s going on ebay for much less than what I paid for it.

Carlos

The scanner I bought 75 days ago ago shows vertical lines on the pdf document. Can I at least get an exchange?

HEE

Hello, I purchased my new macbook September 1st. Now, my laptop has some problems. It doest not work sometimes. No damage on it. Can I exchange it? I am not a special member.

Lisa

What about returning a washer and dryer within a week of purchase? did not like the way they work.

JEN

Shit I don’t know what’s wrong with me, I had brain injury and mental illness and emotional trauma and overspent on things I didn’t need and didn’t use and couldn’t store or had no space for. Shit I don’t think they will care that this is a legitimate problem in my brain or health that I’ve beeen having :(…?

Ok, I purchased a vacuum, dehumidifier, air purifier because I am OCD and I thought I needed it until I got chewed out by the property manager going WFT what’s all that bulk and am at risk of losing the place.

What makes it worse, I just needed a dam AC, cuz I’m sweating bullets cuz the dehumidifier made the room hotter, not cooler, shit! I was misinformed on the product by an employee I don’t remember the store or name 🙁 cuz my memory problem.

Do they care if it’s been past 15days? One is opened obviously, the other is opened but intact or untouched, the third is sealed. Do they allow flexibility for people going through trauma or confused in decision making or misinformed (no proof of who it was)?

Should I just say I lost my receipt?

If I show the receipt (past 15days, like 2mos), what will they tell me?

Laura D

I bought a vacuum that I never used. Too many parts to the vacuum and I didn’t care for it. But life, summer, work took over abd it’s been 6 months since I bought this vacuum. Not used at all…not even turned on. I have the packaging and everything. Can I return it to the store or should I make the attempt to return it by mail? I have a record at Best Buy of all my purchases so I am sure they can look up my info without my receipt…. Actually I know they can. What is my recourse since I really dislike this vacuum? Thanks!

Tucker D

Do we know what the holiday return policy is for 2018 yet? I assume Nov1 thru Dec 31st, but I’d like to know. I’m planning on purchasing two new cellphones but want to watch for the deals …

Bob

I walked in to a Best Buy store and ordered a camera to have it ship to my house. The camera I bought is only on display at the stores so you have to order it online. I went to another store closer to my house with my receipt and an employee told me that I cannot returned the camera at their store. I had to go back to the store where I ordered it.

Richard

I bought a gaming mice and headset, there were in promotional since was blackfriday, but I found a better offer and bought it. I don’t want anymore the other things that I bought it first, but I already open the pack and used the things, can I still return? And I can return in 14 days or on January since is November?

Cory mauch

So we bought our daughter a computer but we bought it a couple of months before Christmas. This is a Christmas gift that she just opened yesterday. Turns out it is not a very good computer at all. Your better off doing a book report on you’re watch phone. So how is this gonna work.

Diana B

Hi, I purchased my tv a little less than a year ago, and also opted for the warranty. It’s had connection issues since the beginning but I always thought it was my hdmi cable. Just figured out it’s not. Can I still return? Purchased with Best Buy Credit card and am an elite member.
Thanks!

Kyle

I bought a keyboard from bestbuy a few months ago and some of the keys are broken. I got a replacement from the manufacturer but now want a different brand. Can I return the brand new replaced keyboard for store credit?

Jessica

Great post thank you. What if I bought a brand new Hp desk top and I have had it less than 30 days and want to exchange it for an apple desk top? Is that possible

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