This upcoming Thanksgiving weekend, 164 million Americans, or close to 70% of the U.S. population, will start their holiday shopping. And, according to the National Retail Federation, an estimated 1 in 5 of those shoppers will start as early as Thanksgiving Day — something that would have been unheard of a generation ago.
Historically, retailers only began to turn a profit for the year — moving from red to black in accounting ledgers — on Black Friday. While still mostly true today, brick-and-mortar retailers feel the added pressure from e-commerce and the success of Cyber Monday. Therefore, many retailers aim to lengthen the holiday shopping season as much as possible. If retailers first started by stretching Black Friday hours, eventually bleeding into Thanksgiving, today Thanksgiving Day itself is a shopping day, although still dwarfed by Black Friday.
Nearly every major retailer in the United States will be open at least part of the day. The few who stay closed cry foul, claiming that workers deserve the day off. Even video game retailer GameStop, after three years of remaining closed on the Thanksgiving, gave in and announced its stores will once again open a day early.
Many, like Best Buy, Kohl’s, and Macy’s, will open their doors around 5 p.m., giving shoppers and employees the chance to spend time with their families before taking advantage of the weekend’s sales. Others will be open all day. Big Lots will open its doors at 7 a.m., while Sears will open at 6 a.m., and each will stay open until midnight.
The few major retailers that will remain closed are mostly in industries that do not rely so heavily on the five-day shopping period that runs from Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday. These include hardware stores like Home Depot and Lowe’s, and wholesalers like Costco and BJ’s.
Based on public statements of major retailers, 24/7 Wall St. identified the companies that will open stores on Thanksgiving Day. We considered the top 100 retailers by U.S. sales, as measured by the National Retail Federation. Additionally, we considered companies with a broad nationwide presence. We excluded restaurant chains, as well as convenience stores and specialized service providers. All store location counts listed are annual U.S. sales figures, as determined by the NRF, refer to the parent company. The two exceptions are Sears and Kmart, for which sales figures and store counts came directly from the company’s most recent annual financial filing with the SEC. In the case of many of the companies on this list, when and whether to open is up to the individual locations, and some portion of the stores will remain closed on Thanksgiving or will have different hours than the ones listed here.