Zara Return Policy: Let’s Muddle Thru The Confusion

Updated January 19, 2024 by Kyle James

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.

Zara Return Policy: Let's Muddle Thru The Confusion

How Many Return Days Does Zara Allow?

30 days.

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?

You do.

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.

See Also: 45+ Retailers Offering FREE Shipping with NO Minimum

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.

See Also: Here’s Exactly How the Zappos Return Policy Works (Plus Hacks for Success)

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.

See Also: Ulta Return Policy: We Untangle It and Answer ALL Your Questions

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.


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If I still have the tags but they have been cut off, may I still return an online purchase?


Actually, we just left Zara tried to return a pair of pants my daughter bought. The dressing room was closed when we purchased so we got home she cut the tags off bc they are the size she wears and found out the zipper was broke. Manager wouldn’t let us return them bc since the tag was cut off they were considered “damaged” I tried to explain they were damaged no matter what and that the dressing room was closed when purchased. Didn’t matter. Wouldn’t listen so we are stuck with a pair of pants with a broken zipper.

Kelvin Felix

If I bought the item from Zara online but want to do an in-store return.. item is a handbag and has never been used but price tag (label) is off .. I don’t need a refund just want an exchange .. is this possible ?


Hi, how i return two different purchases in one package? which label i put on box/inside box?

Julie Windass

What about Xmas purchases ? I bought something for my daughter for Xmas in November , my daughter has unknowingly bought it for herself and I can’t return mine !!!


Terrible shop… they are rude how they speak to you. Tried to exchange a pair of shoes which were a present so had no receipt. I only wanted the size changed and they refused

Janet Ann armstrong

I had a terrible experience today in the Guildford store. I wanted to return 2 items. One was purchased by myseld and i had receipt so card was just refunded. The 2nd was bought for my daughter by her grandmother. The top was too small, we had a receiot and we asked for a credit note to come back another day as the store was packed. We were told by the chief cashier andby the manager that we could nit have a credit note as the receipt was the normal receipt and not a gift receipt. They asked me to produce the debit card. I said i do not have my mother in laws card. I was told a credit note couldnt be given and we would have to accept an exchange. I disagreed saying how is a normal receipt worse than a gift receipt. I was then told by the manager that because it was less than £20 they couldnot offerva credit note. I asked where could i read about this ‘£20 rule’. I asked to speak to another managercas this didnt sit right. 5 mins later another manager came over, didnt look at me or talk to me but asked the cashier to give me a credit note forthe £11.99. She walked off. Once done, i went and spoke to this manager. I asked agsin what this £20rule was and why the amount mattered re credit note or exchange. She also advised me it was an unofficial rule. This was the Guildford store. Anyone else heard of this and if so, shouldnt staff make consumers aware. It was a real battle to fet what we felt was the right outcome.


Zara Canada, Metrotown Centre location has probably the most inexperienced and unprofessional Manager. I had my receipt and asked for the item to be priced adjusted within the 30 days, cashier said its their policy and don’t do price adjustments. I said okay then please return the item full price which I have purchased not 2 weeks ago and I will repurchase it. Cashier say’s “No, our policy is to hold onto the item for 24 hours to do a quality control on the item” I asked show me where on the back of the receipt it says that.

She points out to “Returned items will be available for sale only after a quality control is completed in the normal course of business”. I said okay please have the Manager view the unworn item, with the tag on and put it back on the floor and I will then purchase it. Still she refused and said no we need 24 hours for this and tomorrow to come back.

I was completely shocked at the effort in trying to avoid a customer sale by not allowing me to buy this item again. It almost seemed spiteful. I say this because while I was in the Return & Exchange line I saw this same cashier return clothing, put a security tag on it and pass it off to the Associate to put back on the floor.

I said to her to call the Manager and when the Manager came he did the same thing. He said “No, its our policy to hold it 24 hours”. I told him, I live far away and to hold an item only to stop me from getting a price saving which was being unprofessional on his part. He refused and regurgitated the policy which is not the case on the receipt.

Well guess what, 30 minutes later the same item was on the floor, and I got someone else to buy it. In turn this experience was horrible and reflects on who Zara Canada hires for their Managers, how they train them, how to train these Managers in Customer Service, problem resolution methods and overall who’s representing their brand image.

Extremely disappointing experience and shameful on this Manager who is representing this National Corporation. This was not a policy issue rather a Manager who choose to avoid selling a item to a customer who wanted to save money. This was his personal choice and not Zara policy. This is who you have running your Flag ship store in Burnaby, BC, Canada.

Either train him properly or hire someone else who understands what Customer Relationship Management means.


I feel the same I used to shop a lot at zara this is exactly why I am now avoid to shop at zara.


I have just had an online chat, first obviously with a robot, then finally to a person who seemed not to be able to understand that I simply wanted to know where the drop off points where as the so called drop off point attachment that I was told would come with my QR code return label simply was not there. Finally after a long and frustrating and very obtuse conversation the chat person finally said that I ‘could also get the label printed and drop off at the local Royal Mail office’. Heaven knows what the ‘also’ in the sentence might have been about because Royal Mail was the only place I was given.
WHY THE BIG SECRET, ZARA? Do please get your act together in regard to this (hoping someone important from Zara will read). Thank you so much for this blog. Exactly what we needed.


Hi, after purchasing items from Zara i wanted to return two items however I couldn’t find the receipt. The day after purchase I tried to exchange but found that I was meet with a resolute no from both assistant and manager. After much discussion I was advised to phone customer service which I did. I was asked for product codes, total cost, method and date of payment and store location. Today I received by email a copy of my receipt.
So I advise anyone having problems to contact customer services.


I returned 2 packages worth $270 via USPS and tracking shows it’s stuck in Fontana California for more than 30 days so Zara won’t give me a refund. I could have insured my purchase or used FEDEX but I relied on their mail service. What are my rights?


Did you pay with a credit card? If yes, file a charge back with your issuer.

Margie Gough

Bought an item in Zara Belfast whiles visiting .. Got home and the item doesn’t suit as well as not fitting probably. Tried to change it in Athlone , no way because it was purchased outside the state .. Is there anyways around this ? Thanks


Any information on receiving perfumes in perfect mail packaging but with zara perfume box seal broken and scratched bottles?


bought gifts for christmas and chanukah in November to insure delivery and then when I had to exchange an item after christmas they said no. Thirty days only. All my recipients are so upset as well as I am. Who can believe that when people shop in November for the holidays there is a time limit. No other store does this. This is so unethical. Will never shop here


Just had the same experience in Leeds. Mother in law bought me a coat for Christmas on 3 Dec and it turned out it didn’t fit. Tried to take it back today (11 Jan) and they refused any kind of exchange, never mind refund. Absolutely abhorrent. I work at a hospital and was basically given Christmas week including Bank Holidays to return it (my nearest store is 60 miles away). I travelled that 60 miles to receive this resolute no. So angry, the coat was £120!!!


I just tried to exchange items received as gifts for different sizes. I have order number and a gift receipt. I was hung up on twice. Finally tried chat and was told I could only exchange in store. I have no Zara locations in my area. Only the purchaser can exchange. What’s the point of a gift receipt? I really don’t want the purchaser to feel bad about the sizes and I hate to waste the clothes bur this company has nothing in place for the gift recipients. Beware if you are purchasing gifts!

Helen Odam

Zara lakeside has the worst sales assistants. When being asked to exchange a gift without a receipt they are rude unhelpful and dismissive.
Would not recommend this store to family or friends