How to return Amazon items

It's more hassle-free than you might think to return unwanted gifts.

How to return items on Amazon

by Lorna White |

We've all ordered things online that we've wanted to return for one reason or another. Whether it's a plant pot that was a lot smaller than it looked in person, or a gift from a loved one that you already have, returning unwanted items is often a chore none of us looks forward to.

These days, however, returning goods online is a lot easier than you might think, especially if you're returning something on Amazon. Here's how you can return Amazon gifts you've received, in exchange for an Amazon gift card and return Amazon items you've bought yourself.

How to return gifts on Amazon

Firstly sign into your Amazon account or set one up if you don't have one.

1. Go to Amazon's gift return centre on your browser

2. Type in the order number

The order number or Order ID is a 17-digit code found on the packing slip that came with your item(s). It can also be found on the email gift receipt that was sent to your email address with your item. If you're struggling to find it, contact Amazon here.

3. Select the items you want to return

Enter the total number of items, and select your reason for wanting to return from the dropdown menu. If your item came from a third-party seller, you will need to submit a return request as in some cases, the seller wants to review your reason for the return before accepting it.

4. Select a shipping option

Next you'll need to choose how you want to return your gift. This will provide you with a returns label for your package. You'll need separate returns labels for different gifts/orders.

At this point, you might be asked to print out your returns label and a returns authorisation if required. If you don't have a printer on hand, Amazon can email you a link to your label for you to print later. Alternatively, you can send this to someone who has a printer.

5. Package up your item

Once you've got your returns label, package up the item you're returning, making sure the parcel contains the item you're wanting to return in its original condition (plus the returns authorisation if needed), then secure the returns label to the front of the parcel.

Once Amazon receives the item, you'll be sent a refund in the form of an Amazon gift card, added onto your Amazon account, ready to spend on something else.

Will the sender know if I return a gift?

The best thing about returning a gift to Amazon this way is that the sender won't be notified that you've returned their gift so you won't have to worry about any embarrassment the next time you see them!

How long do I have to return an item?

Usually, you get 30 days to return your item from the date it was shipped. Over the Christmas period, any items shipped between October 1 and December 31, can be returned until 31 January.

How to return Amazon items you've bought

If you're looking to return other items, you should follow the same steps starting from this page here. The difference is, when you've bought the item yourself, you'll receive a full refund back to your bank account rather than a gift voucher.

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