Central Oregonians hit stores day after Christmas

Returns, gift cars propel No. 2 shopping day of year

Post-Christmas shopping

BEND, Ore. - We've  all done it: Open a holiday gift, hold up a sweater with a delightful fake smile, and secretly dig around for that gift receipt.

A survey by the National Retail Federation found Americans will return $62.7 billion in merchandise after the holidays

And more than one-third of Americans will return at least one gift.

"I'm going to upgrade the gift  -- I'm going to get something else," said one Bend man, returning a GoPro to Target on Wednesday.

"The stuff that we got turned out to be the wrong sizes," said a girl returning some Carhartt clothing at Fred Meyer.

 While the return lines at local stores varied from nearly out the door to completely empty, Bend Target Team Leader Teresa Daily said the day after Christmas  is less about receipts and all about the plastic -- gift cards.

"About 40 percent of all gift card sales happen in November and December," Daily said.  "And today is the biggest day for redeeming those. So we see a lot more of the sales coming in, and the returns kind of start later in the day and then go through the weekend."

Daily said Target's gift card sales are significantly up this year, compared to last -- and shoppers say when it comes to gift cards,  the more the merrier.

A woman shopping at Fred Meyer said she has been getting more gift cards the last few holidays.

" More and more that I'm older now," she said.  "It's harder, I guess, to get things for adults. I'm going to get something that No. 1, it fits, and something that I like."

Some came out to get a jump start on the holidays for next year -- with clearance holiday-item prices they said can't be beat.

 "This is a day when all those really organized people come in and they get all their wrapping paper for next year -- their bows, ornaments, fun things like that," Daily said.

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