Did eBay extend the holiday return period for buyers without informing sellers (and buyers)? A baffled seller reported that a buyer who made a purchase on November 22nd was allowed to open a return request on January 8th and said they had no option other than to accept the return or refund the customer.
"I tried to get an answer from eBay reps but they tell me to wait until January 14th because there is a 5 day seller response period they have to wait out before they can step in," the seller wrote in their post
on the thread titled, "Return Request From Order More Than 30 Days Old."
After getting advice from a colleague to try contacting eBay via social media channels with a private message, the seller reported getting a different customer experience on Facebook:
"In follow up... I contacted them on Facebook and someone replied IMMEDIATELY to me. They were SO very helpful and closed the case. They said it was part of the "extended holiday return period which you may not have been made aware of".
"I was not aware of this, which may have been my error in missing a post or announcement about it but I appreciate that someone ACTUALLY was able to help me."
While the eBay rep responding on Facebook provided a better experience, they also mentioned extended holiday returns. The seller continued:
"Yes, Facebook was a HUGE help and fast! They said it was part of their "extended holiday return period" which is why there was no option to decline.
"It is crazy to me that no other customer service agent had this answer for me.
"It's Facebook only for me from now on."
Meanwhile there's no secrecy about Amazon's practice of extending its return period during the holidays to make it more buyer-friendly. In September, it announced
that the Amazon Extended Holiday Returns Policy for 2021 would cover most of the items purchased between October 1 - December 31, 2021, making them eligible for return through January 31, 2022.
But the reason for offering extended returns is to give shoppers more confidence *during* the holiday shopping period, with the hope of increasing sales. If buyers didn't know about an extended return period, then eBay and its sellers would not have benefitted from such a policy.