Best Buy Return Policy


The Best Buy return policy is incredibly short — unless you've got a paid My Best Buy membership. But that's probably not the most earth-shattering news, as most electronics return policies tend to be on the shorter side.

Even the Costco return policy, famed for accepting returns from now through all eternity, sets a 90-day limit for electronics. And for cell phones specifically, Best Buy's return policy is identical to the Walmart return policy.

But it's still really short. There are also a lot of stipulations you'll have to follow, like keeping all the tags on everything and only returning items that are in like-new condition. That said, Best Buy can run some pretty great deals, and you can even invoke things like the Best Buy price match policy to ensure you're maximizing your savings. So don't let the return policy scare you away. Just get educated about it.

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1. How long do I have to return an item to Best Buy?

Oh boy, is that a loaded question. The standard Best Buy return policy window all depends on what you buy and whether or not you're part of the Best Buy membership program.

For most products, you get an incredibly short 15-day return window. But if you're a My Best Buy Plus or Total member, you get 60 days.

There's a separate return window for "activated devices." This includes any electronics that have to be activated by a cellular carrier, like cell phones, tablets that utilize cell service, and mobile hotspots. These items can only be returned within a 14-day timeframe — whether or not you're a My Best Buy member.

And then there's a whole separate treatment for Verizon cell phones. Verizon products actually have a 30-day return window — again, regardless of membership status.

Chart showing the Best Buy Return Policy window, which ranges from 14 to 60 days.

What is the Best Buy return policy after 15 days?

After the 15 days are up, there's actually good news. Your local Best Buy manager or customer service rep can make an exception.

Although Best Buy enforces strict return windows at a corporate level, if you try to make a return a day or so after the deadline, try to explain your circumstances to your local Best Buy store manager to see if they will make an exception for you.

Related: Here are all the stores with the best return policies, according to KCL.

2. What do I need to return an item to Best Buy?

You need all the things! All items must have their tags attached. Everything that came in the box must be in the box. Ideally, you'll also have your receipt, but that's not necessarily required in 100% of cases.

What happens with a lost receipt?

If you don't have a receipt, you may be still in luck. First, Best Buy will try to find a digital version of your receipt in their system. If you're a member of the My Best Buy rewards program, they can look up your order with your phone number. Best Buy can also look up your purchase with your credit card if you visit the in-store Customer Service desk.

If you have no way to show proof of purchase, you may be able to get store credit (minus the state sales tax) or do an exchange as long as the item is unopened and in new condition. You'll have to show your ID and provide your email address, and all your returns will be tracked.

3. Can I return an item that I used or opened?

If you're trying to return a used or open item, you'll definitely need your receipt. With your receipt in hand, an open return might be accepted — but used items won't. The return has to be in like-new condition. As long as everything's in the box and you haven't damaged anything, they'll likely accept your return.

4. Are there exclusions to the Best Buy return policy?

Of course! Final sale items can't be returned. You also can't return any of these items whatsoever — even if you're within that ridiculously short 15-day return window:

  • 3-D printer filament

  • Cleaning agents

  • Completed services

  • Custom or personalized orders

  • Digital subscriptions (including digital gaming, but excluding Microsoft Office)

  • Filters

  • Fuel

  • Health supplements and test kits

  • Home standby generators

  • Ink

  • Memberships

  • Opened batteries or other consumable items

  • Opened Legos

  • Opened SIM kits

  • Phone cards

  • Plumbing items including bidets

  • Prepaid cards

  • Sexual wellness products

  • Third-party gift cards

  • Trading cards (including Pokémon)

  • Vehicle replacement key fobs

TIP: Did you know that Best Buy has some of the best pricing on Pokemon cards? Even better pricing than Dollar Tree!

5. Does Best Buy charge restocking fees?

You won't have to pay any restocking fees if the product is unopened. But for certain open-box items you return, you'll be charged a Best Buy restocking fee of 15% of the total purchase price.

Items that may have a 15% restocking fee include:

  • Drones

  • DSLR cameras

  • Electric bikes

  • Electric mopeds

  • Electric wheelchairs

  • Leg and body recovery systems

  • Premium & Super scooters

  • Premium camcorders

  • Projectors & screens

  • Special-order products

This can get really expensive, really fast when you're talking about returning a $1,000 DSLR camera, which would have a restocking fee of $150.

For devices that you have to activate to use (think cell phones), Best Buy charges a $45 return fee instead of the 15% restocking fee.

However, if both the purchase and return are being made in certain states, you won't pay restocking fees at all. Those states are:

  • Alabama

  • Colorado

  • Hawaii

  • Iowa

  • Mississippi

  • Ohio

  • Oklahoma

  • South Carolina

6. What is the electronics return policy at Best Buy?

The Best Buy electronics return policy doesn't vary much by item. There are very few exceptions to Best Buy's standard return policy, but below are the details about the items most often returned.

How do I return a laptop to Best Buy?

Laptops and computers must be returned within 15 days. If they've been opened, they must be wiped clean of all personal data and in like new condition. There is no restocking fee for computers, not even for open-box items. But you do have to have the original box, and all components that came inside.

How do I return a TV to Best Buy?

Best Buy has a generous "Best Buy TV Promise." When you buy a TV that's 60 inches or larger, they guarantee it will fit in your space. If it doesn't, you can exchange it for any other model.

And Best Buy makes the exchange process for large TVs incredibly easy. You can do the exchange in-store, or they'll deliver your replacement TV directly to you for free, even if you didn't get the original TV delivered.

If you buy their mounting service, Best Buy will unmount the original TV for no charge and mount your new one.

There are no additional delivery fees for returns or exchanges either. Even if you live in an area that has extra fees, Best Buy will waive them for TVs larger than 60 inches.

TIP: If the price for the more-appropriately-sized model is lower than your original purchase, you can ask for a refund for the difference with the Best Buy TV Promise.

How do I return a cell phone to Best Buy?

You have 14 days to return an activated cell phone or tablet to Best Buy (or 30 days for Verizon products). And keep in mind that you'll be charged a $45 restocking fee when you do. (Unless you live in one of those states we talked about in Tip #5.)

Before you return your cell phone, make sure to delete all your data and personal information. If you decide to return a phone or device with a carrier contract, you are responsible for canceling your service contract with the carrier, and for all carrier charges.

You can return your cell phone in-store or by mail. If you do it in-store, just tell the store associate that you want to cancel your service. Carrier service cancellation policies may vary. And if you want to mail it back, call Best Buy Mobile at (877) 702-2211 for instructions on how to return the device.

How do I return a video game at Best Buy?

If your video game is unopened, just return it within the regular return window (15 days) for a full refund and no restocking fees.

If you opened that sucker, though, you can only do an exchange for an identical item at Best Buy. This doesn't just apply to video games — it's also the rule for opened physical copies of computer software, movies, music, books, video game guides, and sheet music.

What is the Best Buy appliance return policy?

Best Buy's appliance return policy only allows returns if the appliance is defective. To return an appliance to Best Buy, you still technically only have 15 days. But if you read the fine print, it says you can't just change your mind and get a refund. The only acceptable reasons for an appliance return are defects and damage.

Many of Best Buy's competitors have similarly strict return policies for major appliances:

Wondering how exactly to return your appliance to Best Buy? First off, do not take your item back to the store. Begin your appliance return by calling 1-888-BEST BUY (1-888-237-8289).

Related: Tips & Tricks I Use to Save Money on Appliances

7. What is Best Buy's return policy for gift cards?

You can't return Best Buy gift cards. You also can't return third-party gift cards you purchased at Best Buy.

If you lost your gift card or it was stolen, Best Buy will issue you another gift card for the same amount — as long as you have the original purchase receipt. To report a lost or stolen gift card, call (888) 716-7994.

Now, if you purchase an item with a gift card, make sure to hold onto that gift card. Even if you spend the balance down to $0. That's because if you make a return later, the money will be refunded to that same gift card. If you already threw it out, it becomes a big thing. You have to call customer service at (888) 237-8289. They will help you get it sorted, but it's an avoidable situation.

Just hold onto the gift card until you're 100% sure you're not making a return.

8. Can I return an item that I bought online?

Yes, you can return an item that you bought online in the store. You can also make your return via mail.

To return something by mail, log into your account and tap "Order Details" for the order you want to return, then "Return Options." You can select the items from your order you want to return, and then print your free return shipping label.

Stick the label on your package and take it to your local UPS drop-off location.

There are a handful of items that can't be returned by mail. You'll have to take these items in-store to return, even if you originally bought them online:

  • Anything with a lithium battery

  • Best Buy for Business orders

  • Kegerators

  • Sodastream makers

  • TVs larger than 50 inches

If you've got one of those larger TVs, remember that you can invoke the free delivery service if it's more than 60 inches and the reason you're returning it is that it doesn't fit in your space.

TIP: Unlike the Best Buy policy, the Target return policy does allow you to return Sodastream purchases via mail. Plus, you'll get a $15 Target gift card every time you return an empty cylinder through the mail.

9. How will I get my refund?

Best Buy issues refunds in the same method you paid for the item. So if you paid with a Best Buy gift card, they'll refund your money back to a Best Buy gift card.

If you used multiple forms of payment like a debit or credit card plus a gift card, you would receive the same amount back on each method.

Did you receive a gift from Best Buy that you don't actually want? They'll give you store credit for the purchase price if you return it in-store.

10. What is the Best Buy holiday return policy?

Best Buy's holiday return policy offers an extended return window beginning in mid- to late October until sometime at the end of December, giving you extra time through January to return any purchases you make within that window. The early window for holiday returns includes Best Buy's Early Black Friday sales, as well as traditional Best Buy Black Friday shopping.

The most recent holiday return window lasted from Oct. 27 - Dec. 30, 2023. Purchases made between those dates could be returned any time until Jan. 31, 2024. Expect to see a similar extended holiday return window next year.

Exclusions to the holiday return policy include cell phones, cellular tablets, hotspots, and smartwatches that have cellular activation and a third-party contract. AppleCare+ plans are also excluded. All of these items have a 14-day return policy no matter when you buy them.

Holiday items like artificial trees, lights, garlands, inflatables, and decorations are also excluded from Best Buy's extended holiday return policy. Instead, these holiday items can be returned within the normal 15 days for a full refund.

11. How do I contact Best Buy customer service?

That depends on the issue you're calling about. Call (888) 237-8289 if you're trying to get in touch with Best Buy customer service for:

  • Appliance returns.

  • Returns of damaged or defective products via mail.

  • Problems with a refund that went to a gift card that no longer exists.

If you're calling because your gift card was lost or stolen, call (888) 716-7994. For cell phone returns via mail, call (877) 702-2211.