Macy's curbside

A Macy's department store sign in Midtown Manhattan, on Sept. 10, 2016, in New York. Macy’s employees will be filling curbside pickup orders on Thanksgiving Day, even though its stores won’t be open to shoppers.

The idea of opening stores on Thanksgiving Day caught on a few years ago when retailers ran out of early morning hours to open for their Black Friday doorbusters.

Macy’s employees will be filling curbside pickup orders on Thanksgiving Day, even though its stores won’t be open to shoppers.

The department store chain’s decision Monday is a surprise as most major retailers, even before the pandemic, had given up on Thanksgiving Day openings. Walmart, Target, Best Buy, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Kohl’s, J.C. Penney and malls are all closed on Thanksgiving Day.

The concept of opening stores on Thanksgiving Day caught on a few years ago when retailers ran out of early morning hours to open for their Black Friday doorbusters. But it fell out of favor with shoppers and retailers who believed workers needed the day off.

Target CEO Brian Cornell told employees the closed on Thanksgiving Day is a permanent decision going forward and they “don’t have to wonder whether this is the last Thanksgiving you’ll spend with family and friends for a while, because Thanksgiving store hours are one thing we won’t ‘get back to’ when the pandemic finally subsides.”

Macy’s said curbside pickup will be available from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday.

Employees will be paid time and a half, Macy’s said, and they had the opportunity to sign up to work on Thanksgiving Day on a voluntary basis as early as September.

“We are delighted to be able to offer customers curbside pick up on November 25 at a majority of Macy’s stores across the country, for customers to pick up a last-minute hostess gift [or] early Black Friday deal,” said Macy’s spokeswoman Jacqueline King in an emailed reply.

Macy’s has hired consultants AlixPartners to review its business while activist investor Jana Partners wants the department store to split its e-commerce operations into a separate company. Saks Fifth Avenue did that this year and its e-commerce business is preparing an initial public offering.

Copyright 2021 Tribune Content Agency.

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