Quick question for ya this Boxing Day morning: was what you were given for Christmas turn out to be what you wanted for Christmas? Did your spouse/kids/pets feel the same way? Are the sizes and colors just right? If so, please feel free to skip this article. Otherwise, keep reading. Maybe we can make your returns happier.

First of all, do your gift recipients a favor; if you haven't already, don't throw away receipts. The person you gave that sweater to might need to take it back [Heck, he or she may want to take it back. Did you see that color combination under natural light?]. Any return goes faster with a receipt. (Of course, if you find you received a gift you just don't want, you should tactfully ask whomever gave it to you if s/he still has the receipt. Yeah, it's awkward. But getting what you really want makes you think more kindly of the person who gave you the original item.)

Know the store's return policy. Surprisingly, stores have no legal obligation to take returns just because you don't like something [they're only required to take returns of defective or misrepresented products]. Follow the store's rules, and the exchange will probably go more smoothly. For instance, do you need a receipt? (see above) Can you get a cash refund, or only in-store credit? The more you know your store's policy, the less you'll be disappointed with what the store will offer you.

Gift cards can usually not be returned. You may find a third-party website that will buy them, but usually at reduced value. Try setting up a gift card exchange at your job or in your neighborhood.

Be polite, be persistent and, if all else fails, file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau [it's your right].

[Original article from GoErie.com]