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Customers return Christmas presents, seek hot sales

By JR Ortega
Dec. 26, 2011 at 6:26 a.m.

Tiffany Bias and her mother, Linda Van Dale, shop for sale items the day after Christmas at Target on Monday, where sales were abundant. One-year-old Hunter looks around from his shopping cart seat while big brother Kyle explores a smart phone.

Move over Black Friday, Manic Monday has rolled into town.

People throughout the Crossroads and across the U.S. flooded retail stores Monday to return Christmas gifts and get the best of after-Christmas sales.

An expected $46.28 billion in holiday merchandise will be returned nationwide, according to the National Retail Federation.

Debra Lozano, of Victoria, stood in a gradually growing line at Target to return an iPad.

No, the iPad was not broken, her husband just felt he could use the money for something else, she said.

Lozano does not frequently return items during Christmas, so she was not sure what to expect, she said.

"I'm surprised there isn't a long line," she said.

Target employees sorted returned items diligently, separating clothes from electronics.

The items returned after Christmas really do vary, said Target Manager Mike Yokum.

"Some people return wrong-sized clothing," Yokum said.

Yokum keeps the store well-staffed to deal with the after-Christmas mania.

The morning after Christmas is usually loaded with customers trying to get the best after-Christmas deals, while the afternoon is mostly geared toward people returning items, he said.

About a week after Christmas is when business typically goes back to normal, he said.

Peggy Miller could not resist the deals she saw.

Miller wheeled her cart into one of the checkouts with two Christmas trees and decorations in tow.

"This is my only stop today," she said.

Target had most of its Christmas inventory reduced to half the original price.

Crowds swarmed the Christmas section at the corner of the store to try to get ahead for Christmas 2012.

Tiffany Bias and Linda Van Dale loaded their carts with ornaments, bells and other items marked half price.

At one time, the mother-daughter duo did the after-Christmas sale shopping together.

But it was put on a five-year hiatus when Bias joined the military.

Now that she is home again, it has resumed.

"You get to stock up for next year," Bias said, as she added another items into her cart.

"And you don't have to spend a beaucoup of money," her mother said laughing.



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