News National Woolworths warns panic buyers it won’t be accepting change-of-mind returns
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Woolworths warns panic buyers it won’t be accepting change-of-mind returns

Woolworths are refusing to refund panic buyers until "further notice". Photo: Twitter/@DrWannabe1
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If you’re looking at the stacks of toilet paper taking up precious storage space at your home and thinking of making a return, think again.

Woolworths has prohibited panic buyers from getting their money back on items stockpiled during the coronavirus outbreak.

That means returns won’t be accepted on everything from baby wipes and serviettes to canned food and bread mixes.

The supermarket usually allows refunds when there has been a change of mind and the product is “unopened, in its original packaging, within reasonable best before dates and with clear proof of purchase”.

But since Wednesday, Woolworths has been rejecting returns after it announced the change in policy, which will continue until “further notice”.

‘Panic buying’ images are spreading on social media, contributing to the stockpiling cycle.

It issued a list of products that it won’t be accepting returns on.

They include “toilet paper, paper towel, tissues and serviettes, medicinal (pain relief), cleaning (anti-bacterial wipes, sprays and cleaners, disposable gloves), feminine hygiene and incontinence, baby wipes.

“Pasta and pasta sauce, canned food (fish, vegetables, soup, fruit and canned meals), flour and bread mixes, cooking oils, rice.”

Woolworths said it believed this was a “necessary measure to meet the demand of as many shoppers as possible” and thanked customers for understanding.

Meanwhile, Coles reportedly used a full-page advertisement in The Australian to announce a strict toilet paper limit and urge customers to only buy as much as they need.

toilet paper mass buying
A security guard in the toilet paper aisle at Coles in Mount Druitt on Wednesday. Photo: Twitter

“The sudden and unprecedented demand for toilet paper has created a problem,” the ad explained.

“But the problem isn’t a shortage of toilet paper,” it continued.

“The problem is that some people are buying a lot more toilet paper than they normally do and more than they need to.

“At Coles, we have a responsibility to ensure every Australian can access their fair share of the things they need every day. And right now, not every Australian can; including the elderly and most vulnerable.

“We can’t allow that to continue.”