Amazon May Charge a Return Fee at UPS Stores

Fee Will Apply if More Viable Stops for Returns Available
A UPS truck with Amazon packages
Amazon packages to be delivered by UPS. (Michael Nagle/Bloomberg News)

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STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — If you opt to return your Amazon purchase at a UPS store, that transaction just might cost you. According to a new company policy, the e-commerce giant is now billing customers a $1 fee if there’s a more viable drop-off location nearby.

“We always offer a free option for customers to return their item,” Amazon spokesperson Steve Kelly recently told Business Insider. “If a customer would prefer to return their item at a UPS Store when there is a free option closer to their delivery address, a very small amount of customers may incur a $1 fee.”

UPS stores have been accepting Amazon returns free-of-charge for years, only billing customers to have the courier pick up returns from their home or to drop off packages at UPS Access Points, which are located inside third-party businesses, The Information reported.

According to Amazon, the new fee is part of an effort to trim returns costs and rely on UPS less. But there are ways to avoid it. Free returns are still being fielded at other drop-off locations — including Whole Foods, Kohl’s and Amazon stores.

To see which options are available for a return, customers should go to the “Your Orders” portion of their Amazon account. A drop-down menu will show which locations are still free and which drop-off sites will incur a charge.

UPS ranks No. 1 on the Transport Topics Top 100 list of the largest for-hire carriers in North America. Amazon ranks No. 19 on the Transport Topics Top 100 list of the largest private carriers.

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