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

Updated September 16, 2021 by Kyle
236
comments

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

Comments

Subscribe
Notify of
guest

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

236 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Toni

I bought an I watch 4 (non cellular) for my husband and he’s not sure he will wear it. I told him to open it and try it for a week and then he can return within 14 days but he’s afraid that once it’s been opened and activated he won’t be able to return if it turns out he doesn’t like it. Will there be a restocking fee?

Rachel Anne Deppe

Hi I bought a laptop about a month ago maybe a few days shy … And I absolutely hate it… what are my options.. what do you think I should do.. thank you.. I appreciate it.

Frank Rizzo

Hello, Kyle. Thank you very much for this article. Can you please expand on your reasoning as to why, if it has been after 15 days, it is smarter to NOT give them your receipt at the time you attempt to return an item for a store credit?

I imagine you are suggesting this so that they cannot tell how long it’s been since the product was purchased, correct? However, by showing them the receipt, I wonder if that would be better for the customer’s return company database status (The Retail Equation) because it might mitigate BB’s/TRE’s suspicion that they are taking back potentially stolen merchandise.

So, that said, which do you think is better – to show the receipt so that it potentially mitigates the suspicion that you are returning stolen merchandise and hopefully not have that negatively affect your return status with The Retail Equation or don’t show the receipt so that they don’t know how long ago you bought the product?

Thanks again!

Frank Rizzo

Thanks, Kyle

Candace

Good evening Kyle. I bought 2 Firesticks for our TVS on 6/26/19. I have the receipt but it’s been 21 days now. Do you think there is a chance they will take them back and give a refund since it’s only a few days after the “15 day” return policy or would my best bet be is to just return them without the receipt and receive a store credit? I would most likely use the credit around Thanksgiving but I’d rather have the money back. Thanks for any help you offer.

Nicki

I bought a $350 Bose Bluetooth Speaker using my credit card. I have since maxed it out. The Bose is still in an unopened box. I need to return it but do not want to put the return on the credit card I used. Can I get a gift card. I really need to get my dog meds, so I need to get a gift card that I can sell. I cannot have the return go in my credit card. Is this doable?

Jayce

Can I return a damaged tv? It’s been 3 days since purchase. I didn’t purchase insurance

Tom

Hi I purchased a camera about 20 days ago. The camera sold to me does not meet my needs and I would like to return it. I would gladly accept a store credit as I am going to buy anther camera. However the manager at the Augusta Maine store told me no returns as past 15 days. period. Do I have any recourse? Thank you

Kya

I bought surface pro trying see how long I have I can return it acts up

Brad Shelley

We bought a 3 ds mine craft game for my boy. He has a 2ds. His electronic says it will play 3ds games on it. He put it in and it says it’s not compatible. Doing some research we find out you have to buy a brand new device for this new game. Best buy won’t take the game back because it is opened. Just frustrating. Don’t really have the money to go buy a new device.

Offie Pascual

I just bought a 65″VIZIO smart TV from Best Buy in Modesto, last Friday Sept 6th by 6PM.
We did not get to install until Sat night the 7th by 10PM.
When it was plugged in, there were shooting lights across the screen, like fireworks (pixels). No image, except these dancing lights. No damage on the screen as well.
We put it back in the box and headed to the store as soon as it opened at 11AM, Sunday.
We were given a hard time. Was told after they examined the unit that it was NOT DEFECTIVE but DAMAGED by us! That it was caused by putting a lot of pressure on the screen. I have never encountered that kind of damage by anyone, like we were superman with a lot of force to make this type of damage internally only.
So, in short, we were told, NO Exchange, NO refund of my $600.30 after 41 hrs !!!, not even 2 days. Was also asked if we bought their protection plan, and since no, tough luck. I know it is under mfr warranty for 1 year. So, don’t understand what the problem was.
Called all the numbers I was given (corporate, store in Tracy, and back to Modesto) the run around. Nobody can help me resolve this matter.
In the end, was told if I want to pursue this further legally, then I would have to deal with their lawyers.
This is NO fault of mine/ours. I don’t understand why Best Buy is doing this to their customers. The supervisor was also very rude, trying to brush us off by even saying she is VERY knowledgeable about TV’s and what is defective or damaged by the customer.
Now, mind you, who I their right mind would not be very careful handling their new unit? And how in the word can any person put pressure that hard to cause the damage inside the scree without any visible damage to the screen itself?
We were dismissed in not so many words to leave with the new, unused tv with the parting words….take it back. It’s your tv and you paid for it.
I am definitely pursuing this resolution to where ever it will take me. I don’t have the kind of money to just toss out as garbage as I am on limited income.
I hope someone out there can help me out before I file a small claims against Best Buy and see about facing their tirade of lawyers for a measly customer like me who knows I am in the right and not at fault for this defect.
Please help.
Thx much.

Bob

Purchased a new MacBook Air Retina 9 days ago. Realized yesterday after turning on laptop….the screen has lines going down the right and bottom sides of screen. We did get the Apple care but I would like to return for a new laptop and not fix this issue with AppleCare. Will they return with no issues? I would think so.

Lisa

My Mom in hospital across street from Best Buy. While she was in ICU my phone died & I didn’t have my charger so my brother walked over & bought me one.I used 1x that night then packed it back in original packing, no harm to it because I got a ride home to grab alli needed for a very longstay. As a matter of fact I’m still at hospital. My brother had to fly back to Carolina & told me to return& get $ to help me with food. Total cost was $31.20. But I just looked at receipt, he paid with credit card. Can I get cash refund considering the circumstsnces?

K Dee

If i purchase something while visiting family at BB USA …if it is faulty or something can i return it to BB Canada once igetback home?

Michael

Hi, I bought a 1,200 dollar laptop about two months ago but I just saw that the newer model that’s usually 1,400 is on sale for 900, would there be any way in which I could return my laptop for store credit to buy the newer one? I also bought a one year accidental damage warranty if that makes any difference.

Jon

Because of the holidays you have until January 14th to return purchases made in November or December.

Brent

Hey, I purchased a Samsung watch on Black Friday. I just opened the box about 3 days ago. I have worn it only 2 times. I just don’t like it. I know that it has been past 15 days. I still have the box and everything and the receipt. Do you think that I could still return it and get a store credit or at least exchange it for a different watch?

Jon

Because of the holidays you have until January 14th to return purchases made in November or December.

181 Shares
Share20
Pin161
Tweet