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First wave of unwanted parcel returns hits depots following online gifting boom

Gaelle Walker
29 December 2020

The first trickle, in what is feared could become a flood, of post-Christmas parcel returns has started to hit depots, following a surge in the volume of online gift purchases this festive season.

The returns process started early, with the first “potentially unwanted Christmas present,” having been returned to a Collect+ store in Stockport at 6.03am on Christmas Day, latest Paypoint data reveals. The next return was made in Manchester at 06:04am.

Across Christmas Day, the most returns took place in London where 86 people sent back their parcels.

In total, 398 people used the Collect+ service at their local convenience store to make a return on Christmas Day.

PayPoint chief executive Nick Wiles, said: “While many of us spent time with loved ones on Christmas Day, thousands of staff at convenience stores were hard at work.  

“It’s thanks to them and their stores that people are able to make parcel returns at whatever time of day they like, even on public holidays.

"This is particularly advantageous for disgruntled Christmas gift recipients who were keen to send back what Santa brought them at the earliest opportunity.”

Unwanted Christmas gifts worth an estimated £6.9bn are predicted to be sent back to depots after Christmas according to Returnado, following the surge in online festive shopping created by the current Covid-19 restrictions.

Clothing and footwear look set to make up the largest volume of returns, accounting for 75% and 25% respectively uSizy recently warned.

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