GAP Return Policy (Complete Guide)

Gap return Policy

Do you know what GAP return policy is? Well, you are at the perfect place to find the answer to such a question.

Even when we take care when shopping, try it on, take our measurements, and do our best to ensure we will love it, it still doesn’t always work out.

Sometimes you have to return an item you thought you would love, which is why it is always important to understand the return policy. Let’s take a look at GAP’s return policy. 

GAP allows returns within 30 days of purchase, or they offer to exchange the item for the one you may like more. Your item must be in its original condition in order for it to be accepted but can be returned for any reason. 

In this article, we will do an overview of GAP’s return policy and discuss all of the important need-to-know items. 

Which Items From GAP Are Eligible For Return? 

Almost all items that you purchase from GAP are eligible for return as long as they are in their original condition. 

However, the one stipulation GAP makes is that the time must be in its original condition. GAP defines the original condition as being unworn and unwashed.

They will use their own discretion to determine if an item looks like it has been worn, but one way to make sure your item is accepted is to leave the original tags on it. 

What If My Item Was Damaged When I Got It?

If your item arrived damaged or defective in some other way then it is eligible for return for any period of time after you received it.

However, it may work in your favor to attempt to return the item as soon as possible and to make sure you didn’t wear it. 

If the item looks used and the damage could appear to have been caused by your use of the item then GAP may decline the return as there isn’t proof it came to you damaged. 

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What Is The Time Period For GAPs Return Policy?

The average time period that GAP allows for returns for online orders and items purchased in-stores is 30-days.

This would mean 30 days from the date of purchase for an item purchased in the store, or 30 days from the date it was shipped for online orders. 

This rule applies to GAP, Old Navy, and Banana Republic. However, it is important to note that you can only return an item purchased at GAP to GAP, it can’t be returned to an Old Navy or Banana Republic. 

If you miss the 30 day time period your item won’t be accepted for a return or an exchange. Items that are considered a “final sale” item, such as clearance or marked down items are also not eligible for return. 

What Is The Charge For A Return At GAP?

Returns at GAP are completely free! If you are making a return in stores then you simply bring your item to the customer service counter and initiate the exchange process.

We will go over the process for an in-store return more in depth soon. 

If you are making a return through the mail you can print a return label from GAP which will cover the cost of your postage. 

How Do I Return An Item Through The Mail?

If you purchased your item from GAP online you can return it through the mail, however, if you purchased your item in the store you will need to return it in person. 

You can complete your GAP return through the mail in three simple steps. 

First, you log into your account and identify the items you would like to return using GAPs interactive returns process. Follow the steps in the returns process to create your return label with prepaid postage and packing slip. 

Second, you pack your return up securely. It is always best to use the original packaging it came in if possible. You should place the packing slip inside the package with the item(s) you are returning. Seal the package securely and tape the shipping label on the outside. It is important to make sure that no other tracking labels are visible. 

And third, drop the package off at the closest UPS. They will handle the return from here and you will receive your refund shortly. 

When Do I Receive My Refund? 

The refund is issued by GAP as soon as they receive the return in the mail, which means it may take a few business days.

They will send you a confirmation email to show that the return has been completed and your refund is on the way. 

Your refund from GAP will be made to the original form of payment, so if you used your credit card the refund will be issued there, if you used a debit card it will be issued there, and if you used a gift card it will be issued there. 

This is why it is important to hold onto a gift card until you’re sure that you are happy with the purchase and want to keep it. 

Although the refund may be issued immediately, your financial institution may take longer to apply the refund to your card, especially if it is through a credit card. A refund to a credit card may take up to ten days to post after it is issued. 

How Do I Exchange An Item Through The Mail? 

If you want to exchange your item for something else rather than receive a refund you will still follow the same steps to mail your item back to GAP.

However, there is a step to take prior to this, which is to request the item you would like to receive for your return. 

First, you need to contact GAP customer service and inform them of the item you would like to receive for your exchange. It is important that you pick either a different size/color of the same item or at the very least an item that is the same price.

This will make your exchange easier. 

How Do I Return Or Exchange An Item In The Store? 

If you would rather complete your return or exchange in stores this is also an easy process. You can return most items purchased online and all items purchased in the store using the simple in-person process.

If the item is marked as a “Mail only” item then it can only be returned through the mail. 

Your in-person return can be completed in only three simple steps as well. 

First, you find your closest GAP location. 

Second, you bring the item back, either in the package, it was delivered in or simply with its tags attached if you purchased it from that store.

You should also bring your original shipping confirmation email if you purchased the item online, or if you purchased it in the store you should bring the original method of payment used.

If your item was purchased in cash, it will be necessary to have the receipt. 

And third, simply go to a customer service assistant and tell them you would like to initiate a return or exchange. 

Can I Return An Item From GAP I Received As A Gift?

If you received an item from GAP as a gift and aren’t happy with it you can easily complete a return. It is even possible to make a return without a gift receipt or gift invoice. 

If you have the gift receipt or gift invoice you will be able to return the gift for a gift card, but if you are missing these items you can only return the gift for a merchandise certificate with the current selling price of the item. 

Let’s go over how to initiate a gift return at GAP as this process is slightly different from returning an item you purchased yourself. 

How Do I Return A Gift By Mail?

There are four simple steps to returning a gifted item by mail to GAP. 

First, you have to get your gift invoice ready. The gift invoice should be given to you along with your gift. You would select that you are completing a gift return.

You write the quantity of the items you are returning and the reasons for the return. Then you will fill out the name/address where the gift card should be sent. 

You can detach the top portion of the invoice to keep as your own record of the return. If you don’t have a gift invoice you will need to contact GAP for help completing the return.

Second, you can print your shipping label from GAP if it isn’t included in your box. 

Third, you need to package your item(s) up. You should place your gift invoice in the box with the item(s), secure the package, and then affix the shipping label to the outside of the package.

You should make sure no other tracking labels are visible as well. 

And fourth, go to your closest UPS and drop off the package. 

GAP will send the gift card in the mail as soon as they receive your return. 

How Do I Return A Gift In The Store? 

If you would rather return your item to the store in person this is also possible. Returning a gift in the store can be accomplished in three simple steps. 

First, find the nearest GAP. 

Second, bring your item along with the gift invoice to the store. If you don’t have the gift invoice you can discuss this with the customer service assistant. 

And third, tell the store’s customer service assistant that you would like to return a gift and would like to receive a refund on a gift card.

If you would like to initiate an exchange rather than a return simply tell the customer service assistant this and they will be able to assist you. 

Are There Any Limitations On Returns? 

The only limitations that GAP sets on items for returns are swimsuits, masks, and sunglasses. 

Masks are not ever eligible for return and are always considered a final sale item. This is due to hygiene concerns around masks. 

Swimsuits must be unworn with the hygiene liners and tags still attached. This rule is in place for hygiene reasons as GAP wouldn’t be able to re-sell a swimsuit that has been worn.

This is a fairly common rule and GAP is not unique in enforcing it. 

Sunglasses can only be returned if they still have their original tags, original receipt, and their case. 

Are There Any Extensions Offered For Returns Around The Holidays? 

GAP is rather unique in that they offer a special return window for items purchased between October 24th and December 24th and this is considered the “holiday season.”

Any items purchased within that time frame can be returned by January 15th, or 30 days from the purchase or shipped date, whichever is later. 

Any items returned by mail must be received by January 15th, not sent by that day. This means in order to receive your refund when returning by mail you should be sending your return at least 5-7 days before January 15th. 

You must have proof of purchase as well, whether this means your original confirmation email, receipt, or gift invoice. 


GAP has a fairly average return policy with a 30 day time limit. This is a pretty typical timeframe that most stores will give, if not on the shorter side a bit.

However, they don’t set many limitations on their returns beyond swimsuits, masks, and sunglasses. 

Most items can be returned through the mail or in-stores with only a few simple steps for a full refund or an exchange. 

It is always important to understand the return policy for a store you are shopping with so you can ensure that you are able to get a refund or exchange your item in the event that it isn’t what you wanted after all. 

We hope we’ve answered your most pressing questions about GAP’s return policy.



Lindsey graduated with an MBA in 2009. Since then, Lindsey has worked in the retail and consumer service industry as a manager, advisor, and marketer. Lindsey is also the head writer and Co-founder of Lindsey is based in Morgantown, West Virginia.

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