For the first time in years, major retailers will keep their doors shut on Thanksgiving.
In the past, many stores remained open on Thanksgiving for last-minute grocery and supply shoppers. But Thanksgiving became an even bigger business day about a decade ago, when major retailers started kicking off their Black Friday sales on Thanksgiving — and encouraging shoppers to line up for doorbusters.
Due to COVID-19 (and all the public health concerns that come with gathering in crowds), stores are making the decision to stay closed, both as a safety precaution and as a thank-you to their employees.
Here’s a list of the retailers that have announced they’ll be closed on Thanksgiving so far. Note that Black Friday (Nov. 27) plans are still up in the air. And, despite stores being closed on Thanksgiving, retailers will almost certainly still offer Black Friday deals online on that day (as they long have done).
We’ll be updating our list as more announce their plans.
In a late-July press release, Best Buy announced its plans to stay closed on Thanksgiving. It did not reveal its Black Friday plans. But it did hint that it would start launching its holiday deals “earlier than ever” this year to give people more time to shop.
The department store will remain closed on Thanksgiving this year to allow “customers, coworkers and communities to enjoy an uninterrupted Thanksgiving meal,” according to a statement from its CEO. In previous years, Boscov’s opened in the evening on Thanksgiving Day.
Dick’s Sporting Goods
In past year’s, Dick’s opened in the evening and stayed open past midnight on Thanksgiving. This year, however, stores and distribution centers will be closed, to give employees the day off. The retailer will be open standard hours the day before Thanksgiving.
In past years, Kohl’s has been known for starting Black Friday on Thanksgiving — and staying open all night long. This year, however, Kohl’s will remain closed on the holiday (Black Friday plans are still TBD). In a press release, Kohl’s promised it would prioritize convenient online and omnichannel (we suspect that refers mostly to Kohl’s new curbside pickup option) services to make sure shoppers have plenty of ways to get their holiday gifts.
Target was the second major retailer to officially announce (in July) it would be closed on Thanksgiving. While it was vague on its Black Friday plans, it did disclose in a press release that it plans to “stretch out the savings” by launching deals earlier in the season.
Walmart led the pack by announcing it would close all its stores on Thanksgiving (including Sam’s Club stores, which are generally closed on Thanksgiving anyway). In addition to Walmart being the first, this announcement was big news because Walmart has always gone all-in on its Thanksgiving-evening Black Friday kickoff (even offering pre-parties with coffee and treats in some years).
Other stores we expect to be closed on Thanksgiving this year
For many retailers, staying closed on Thanksgiving is normal. The retailers below have a history of always staying closed on Thanksgiving. While none have officially confirmed their plans, we think it’s safe to say they’ll be closed — as usual:
- Academy Sports and Outdoors
- Barnes and Noble
- Crate & Barrel
- Guitar Center
- Half-Price Books
- Hobby Lobby
- Home Depot
- Neiman Marcus
- Office Depot