Shoppers pack malls for returns, bargain hunting

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The Cotton Exchange in downtown Wilmington was packed with visitors from out of town and locals treating themselves to post-Christmas gifts on Tuesday.

The day after Christmas usually means hundreds of shoppers are headed back out to stores to make returns and score the biggest deals.

"This is home items for the most part, some of the Christmas stuff, Christmas scents, so, you know, because 50 percent off is OK and 75 is nearly free", said Claudine Namey, who is shopping at the mall with her daughter.

December 26-27 are the busiest days of the year for returns, and industry professionals are recommending shoppers look into exchanging gifts by mail to avoid the long lines and because over a third of all retailers offer free shipping on returns. He added that he doesn't normally shop the day after Christmas and was at the mall because he had the day off.

"We're looking for the Christmas specials and we're up early anyways so we figured we'd stop here", Greenier said.

Jaana Remes was happy to miss the large crowds at Sunvalley on Tuesday morning, after coming down from Davis to shop with her family.

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Florence resident Becky Barrier said having four children has made her become a smart and experienced shopper.

At Best Buy near Fox Valley Mall, Shashir Gaonkar had a similar reaction, noting that the malls before Christmas "were crazy" and that he preferred not to stand in line.

"I'm really an after-Christmas shopper (because there are) better sales", shopper Teresa Butler said. "I think that will help save some headaches", said Zimmerman.

However, not everyone was shopping for bargains, or looking to redeem their gift-cards.

According to a new report from Mastercard's SpendingPulse, spending is up.

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