Amazon returns are almost always free, so we were a little taken aback when the retailer made a slight change to their return policy in April 2023. We suddenly noticed a new Amazon return fee on select returns.
But don’t worry, avoiding the Amazon return fee is easier than you think. It all has to do with location. I’ll spell it all out for you below.
Before you head out, make sure to also check out our breakdown on Amazon’s free shipping minimum, which changes often. For more smart shopping tips and savings hacks, download the KCL app or text to 57299.
Amazon will charge you a $1 fee if you issue a return at UPS and another return location is closer.
This may sound more confusing than it is. If you make a return at UPS and it’s the closest return hub to your delivery address, it’ll cost nothing to make your Amazon return.
On the other hand, if you make a return at UPS and there’s a Kohl’s, Whole Foods, or Amazon Fresh grocery store closer to your delivery address, then you’ll have to pay $1 for your return at UPS.
Why? Well, while an easy and free return policy is convenient for us shoppers, that’s at Amazon’s expense (literally). In 2022 alone, Amazon customers returned $800 billion worth of merchandise. So Amazon’s just trying to cut costs where they can.
You can still make free returns at Kohl’s, Whole Foods, and Amazon Fresh.
Amazon started a partnership with Kohl’s and acquired Whole Foods in 2017. Since then, both brick and mortars served as primary return hubs for Amazon returns, along with Amazon Fresh stores.
Any Amazon returns made at any of these locations will be free — no questions asked. Of course, there are always exceptions, like for items weighing over 50 pounds or items sold by third-party sellers.
If you’re ever unsure about whether or not your purchase qualifies for a free return, simply head to the item’s product listing page. Then look for “Free returns” next to the item’s listed price.
Read more about Amazon’s return policy on their website.