Economy

The Progressive Guide To Holiday Shopping

CREDIT: AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes

Target announced on Monday that it will open at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day. Sports Authority also announced that most stores would be open as of 6 p.m.

The brands join a growing group of retailers who have decided to open their doors on the national holiday, requiring employees to come to work and staff shifts. Gap, J.C. Penney, Kmart, Kohl’s, Macy’s, Sears, Staples, Toys R Us, and Walmart will also open that day. There may be more to make the same decision, as last year at least 12 national chains joined in the early hours.

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CREDIT: Adam Peck/ThinkProgress

Other stores, however, are taking a different approach and deciding to let their workers stay home. In confirming it will be closed on Thanksgiving Day, Laura Sen, president and CEO, said, “Consistent with our company values, BJ’s Wholesale Club will, once again, remain closed on Thanksgiving Day. To give our team a well-deserved holiday, our home office, 206 clubs and three distribution centers will be closed, allowing our 25,000 dedicated Team Members the time they deserve to celebrate all that they are grateful for in the company of family and friends.” Petco and Jo-Ann Fabrics and Crafts also told ThinkProgress that they will be closed on the holiday, making 15 brands that have said they won’t come between employees and celebrating with family and friends.

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CREDIT: Adam Peck/ThinkProgress

While those that will open on the holiday say shifts are filled by volunteers, employees raising their hands may be doing so not out of holiday cheer, but to get enough hours to live off of given how erratic retail schedules are. And they might not be able to say no if asked to work that day. No Americans are guaranteed paid holidays off, while those in the service sector are less likely to get the benefit than the general workforce. Some Kmart workers reported last year that their requests not to work were denied.

Yet asking employees to give up their holiday dinner probably won’t even boost sales. Last year, consumers disapproved of the early hours and didn’t plan to shop on the holiday anyway, while Thanksgiving Day sales didn’t increase numbers any more than regular Black Friday shopping would have.