After two ibuprofen and a couple beers, I’m starting to feel a little bit better after trying to understand the Zara return policy. Some of their policy is pretty straight-forward and other parts are a TOTAL head scratcher. Not sure if Zara ever asked a shopper what type of return policy they would like to see, but their policy on online purchases is crazy. Let’s break it all down for you.
How Many Return Days Does Zara Allow?
Specifically, for online orders you get 30 days from the “shipping confirmation date” to return items.
So don’t hesitate to open up your package and try the clothing on because in reality you only have about 25 days to return stuff bought online.
Who Pays for Return Shipping?
As of December 2022, you’ll have to pay $3.95 to return an item(s).
You can return multiple items from different orders in the same box or packaging and you’ll only be charged the $3.95 once.
Can Items Bought In-Store Be Returned Online?
According to a Zara chat rep I spoke with, “Items bought in store, can only be returned in store.” Wow, what a terrible policy.
But keep in mind that items bought online absolutely CAN be returned in-store and this is a GREAT way to avoid the $3.95 fee.
Are There Any Return Policy Exceptions?
Yes, there are a few you should be aware of.
– Swimwear: Can’t return swimsuits without the hygiene sticker still in place.
– Underwear: Underwear CANNOT be exchanged or returned. The only exceptions are tops, bodysuits, and vests from the kids’ department.
– Fragrances: Can only be returned in their original sealed packaging.
– Accessories: Original packaging needs to be intact.
– Cosmetics: Must be in original condition with original packaging.
– Customizable Items: These cannot be cancelled, returned, or exchanged.
Do I Need My Receipt?
What I mean by this is if you lost your receipt you CANNOT get cash-back or a credit to your original payment method.
BUT…they will let you do an even exchange of the item if all you need is a different size or color.
Keep in mind that “items must be in-season” in order to do an exchange or you’ll be out-of-luck.
Do I Need the Original Packaging?
For online returns, all they ask is that you return items “properly sealed” so they don’t get lost in transit.
For in-store returns, they ask that you bring back all original packaging and tags (if you have them), but tags can be off and packaging can be opened.
What Are Zara Return “Drop Points”?
Zara calls them “drop points” on their website but they just mean your local post office or whatever shipping service Zara uses in your country.
It looks like they use DHL or FedEx in some countries.
When you initiate your return, you’ll be given either a Return Label or a QR code.
If you get an actual return label, you will tape in on your box and follow the return instructions.
If you only get a QR code, you need to take it with you and the shipping company will scan it and THEY WILL PRINT the actual label that will be pasted on the box.
Kinda a pain in the butt.
When I asked Zara if there was any way I could print the label at home instead of getting a QR code, I was told, “Unfortunately, the label is generated by the system and that is the only way that we have to create it.”
How Do I Return 2 Different Purchases in 1 Package?
Your best bet is to hit up Zara live chat and they can actually create a single label for both orders.
How Are In-Store Exchanges Handled?
If you want to exchange the item for something else you must ask for a return and then make a completely new purchase.
If you simply want a different size or color just hand a Zara associate your original item and receipt and they’ll help you out.
What About Online Exchanges?
From the Zara website, here are the 4 steps for an online exchange:
1 – Access your order and select the item you wish to return and the size you would like to exchange it for.
2 – To return your original item, please consult the FREE OF CHARGE options in the section labeled RETURNS.
3 – The original items should be returned within 14 days of the request for exchange.
4 – If the deadline has passed and they have NOT received the original items, the value of the 2nd delivery will be charged to the same payment method as the original.
How Do I Return Items with a Gift Receipt?
Zara actually has a special webpage set up to handle gift receipt returns.
Just follow the instructions and you’ll be good to go.
How About Stuff Bought with a Gift Card?
Stuff that was originally bought with a gift card will also be refunded to the same gift card.
If it was an online purchase you’ll get a virtual gift card along with an email confirmation confirming the refund and your card balance.
If you lost the gift card, and are making a return in-store, Zara will give you a Credit Voucher instead of another gift card.
Ask the Reader: What’s been your experience with the return policy at Zara? Good, bad, or ugly…let me know.
By Kyle James
Photo credit to Mike Mozart.