Navigating Hobby Lobby’s Return Policy: My Tips and Experiences

Getting Your Money Back at America’s Go-To Craft Store

As an avid crafter and DIYer, I rely on Hobby Lobby to fuel my creative passions. Their unparalleled selection of arts, crafts, and home decor supplies keeps me coming back time and time again. However, with any frequent shopping comes the inevitable need to return or exchange items.

In my years of patronage, I’ve become well acquainted with Hobby Lobby’s return policy. While quite generous overall, it does have its limitations. As such, I wanted to share some tips and tricks I’ve learned for getting your money back when items don’t work out as planned. Join me as I break down the ins and outs of Hobby Lobby’s return process.

The Nitty Gritty: Hobby Lobby’s Official Return Policy

First things first, let’s look at the fine print. According to Hobby Lobby’s website:

“Merchandise may be returned or exchanged within 60 days of purchase with the original receipt. Returns and exchanges without a receipt will be processed at the lowest selling price. Merchandise must contain the original barcode and be in the original packaging.”

They go on to list exclusions like custom orders, electronics, gift cards, and clearance items. As you can see, having the original receipt is key to getting a full refund. I’ll go into more detail on no receipt returns later on.

My Top Return Tips for Hobby Lobby Shoppers

Over the years, I’ve mastered the art of painless Hobby Lobby returns. Here are my tried and true tips:

Keep Those Receipts!

Seriously, don’t toss that receipt in the bottom of your shopping bag. Make a habit of filing it away in your wallet, glovebox, or receipt organizer. As mentioned, no receipt means no full refund. For pricier items especially, the original receipt is essential.

Check Expiration Dates

Before returning something, double check the expiration date on your receipt. Hobby Lobby only allows returns within 60 days of original purchase. Mark your calendar and don’t miss that window! Nothing is worse than finding an unused item past the return period.

Bring Proper Packaging

While not an official policy, I’ve found returns go smoother when the original tags, bags, and packaging are included. Make an effort to repackage items as close to their original state as possible. Hobby Lobby employees will appreciate your care.

Know the Exclusions

As outlined on their website, Hobby Lobby does not accept returns on clearance merchandise, custom orders, electronic items, and more. Don’t expect refunds on excluded categories – I’ve tried and failed! Review the full list so there are no surprises.

Get to Know Employees

Having a good rapport with staff at your local Hobby Lobby can benefit your return experiences. Be polite and understanding, even when frustrated. Building relationships leads to more flexibility down the road.

Keep Gifts Separate

When possible, avoid returning gifts without a gift receipt. Hobby Lobby can look up the original receipt with the credit card used for purchase. If that’s not an option, items are returned at the lowest selling price.

Check for Online Return Options

If you purchased an item online, look into returning by mail before heading to the store. Print the return shipping label from your order and send it back. Just make sure your 60 day window hasn’t expired!

Help! I Lost My Hobby Lobby Receipt

We’ve all been there – you go to return an unused item only to realize the receipt is MIA. Don’t panic! Here are some options:

Look Up Previous Receipts

If you’re a Loyalty Member, Hobby Lobby keeps digital copies of your receipts online. Log into your account and search for the item by date. You can print or show the receipt on your phone.

Provide Credit Card Info

Even without the receipt, Hobby Lobby can look up past transactions on the credit or debit card used for purchase. Have your card ready at customer service for lookup.

Return Without Receipt

When all else fails, you can return items without a receipt. Just know you’ll only get back the current lowest selling price, not necessarily what you paid. For big ticket items, this can mean a major difference.

Get Store Credit

Some locations will offer store credit rather than a refund without the original receipt. While not ideal, store credit lets you recoup part of what you spent rather than leaving empty handed.

Navigating Tricky Return Situations at Hobby Lobby

As a seasoned shopper, I’ve encountered my fair share of tricky return scenarios at Hobby Lobby. Here’s how I’ve handled them:

Returning Clearance Items

Hobby Lobby’s policy states that clearance items cannot be returned. But I’ve found that being polite and explaining the reason for return can sometimes bend this rule. If an item is defective or wasn’t as described, they may make an exception. Just know returns are left to employee discretion.

Getting Refunds on Seasonal Items

Similarly, seasonal items like Christmas decor are technically final sale. However, I once successfully returned unused ornaments well after the holidays by emphasizing they were unopened and still carried by the store. Again, kindness and clarity goes a long way!

Exchanging Gifts Without Gift Receipt

When given a gift receipt, Hobby Lobby looks up the price paid and offers options based on that amount. Without one, you only get credit for the current lower selling price. For high ticket gifts, I recommend having the giver include the receipt.

Returning Defective or Damaged Goods

Hobby Lobby is quite accommodating when items are received broken, damaged, or with parts missing. Make sure to thoroughly check merchandise before purchase – once it leaves the store, they can’t guarantee condition. Don’t feel guilty returning clearly defective items!

Getting Store Credit vs. Refund

Most times I’ve been given the choice between store credit or a refund for returns. Store credit is issued immediately, while refunds can take 1-2 billing cycles. With store credit, you lose the money if unused. For expensive projects, I opt to wait for the refund.

The Bottom Line: Be Informed and Reasonable

While not the most lenient around, Hobby Lobby’s return policy is quite fair overall. As long as your receipt is in order, you shouldn’t face issues. Even without a receipt, some compromise can be reached.

The key is being an informed, reasonable customer. Know the policy details, timeline restrictions, exclusions and store-specific quirks. With the right approach, you can minimize frustrations and walk away satisfied. After all, life happens – at the end of the day, Hobby Lobby’s staff and policies aim to help rather than hinder.

So take a breath, grab that receipt, and head in store to return those unused art supplies collecting dust. For all us crafty types, Hobby Lobby returns are simply a rite of passage. Follow my tips above, and you’ll be redeeming money for future projects in no time!

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