Don't Waste Your Money: Gift receipts gain popularity with consu - News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Don't Waste Your Money: Gift receipts gain popularity with consumers

By John Matarese

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) – One reason gift receipts have soared in popularity in recent years is because the person you buy the gift for does not see what you paid. In theory if they need to return it they will get the full value.

Unfortunately, the process does not always work that way.

If you have a gift receipt, you are supposed to get the original purchase price for something you return.

But one woman who recently visited a Walmart says that is not what happened to her.

Carmen Rudd's daughter received two Lalaloopsy Doll sets for Christmas. Although Rudd's daughter loves the doll set, she does not need two.

"She obviously didn't need two, they're pretty large so we decided to take it back and get something else she wanted," said Rudd.

Rudd took her gift receipt and the second doll set back to Walmart for a refund. This is when the process became complicated.

"We had a gift receipt and it kept ringing up at $19.90. And the original price was $39.97," said Rudd.

Rudd says relatives told her they paid $39, not the markdown price of $19. But despite the gift receipt, Walmart would only offer her the current price. Rudd wonders how many other customers may have been shortchanged.

"I think there are so many people out there returning items after Christmas and if you have a gift receipt you think you're golden. Now I can understand if I went in there without a receipt," she says.

A spokeswoman from Walmart apologized and said they in fact do refund the original purchase price if the customer has a gift receipt. The spokeswoman also said the refund process works when it is done properly.

But Walmart has been the subject of several news reports and even one lawsuit in California because of this issue. The retailer says managers have been instructed to watch for this error.

Rudd thinks shoppers should too.

Walmart says the store finally did give Rudd the full $39 for the doll set and it is sorry for any inconvenience to her or anyone else.

To prevent losing money, shoppers should look out for themselves when returning merchandise.

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