A black and white photo of a storefront with a sign on the door that reads, "sorry, we're closed."

Photo credit: Shutterstock

For years, big box stores and their much smaller counterparts have kept their doors open on Thanksgiving Day. Then they found out the hard way that many people want to spend Thanksgiving with friends and family, so they elected to save the crazy deals for the morning after.

Now, half these stores are closing up shop for Thanksgiving Day.

According to PricewaterhouseCoopers’ 2016 Holiday Report, 49 percent of retailers plan to keep their doors open on Thanksgivingthat’s one percent more than last year. For them, it’s about giving their customers more options and, of course, making more money.

Those numbers may rise, as almost 10 percent of respondents in the PWC report are still undecided about their holiday hours. If they can find some sort of benefit to remaining open, you better believe they will.

But not everyone is on board with Thanksgiving Day shopping. Many companies are taking the “family first” approach, allowing employees to spend the day with loved ones as opposed to massive crowds. For some, it’s also practical: the company hasn’t made enough money in Thanksgivings past to justify remaining open.

In New England, some states have already made the decision for businesses, as Blue Laws won’t allow for any stores to be open. Plus, online shopping has made brick-and-mortar visits less appealing.

The Mall of America in Minnesota is choosing to close its doors for the first time in four years in order to allow their employees to spend the day celebrating. Jill Renslow, the Mall of America’s senior vice president of marketing, told the media earlier this month that the decision is in line with the spirit of the holiday.

“We think Thanksgiving is a day for families and for people we care about,” Renslow stated. “We want to give this day back.”

Barnes & Noble, Hobby Lobby, and Ikea are just a few of the stores closing on Thanksgiving.

About 

Martin Ackerman is a freelance writer and current editor originally from Staten Island, NY. His university schooling focused on English education and Japanese. He has a (not so secret) passion for art history and political science. When he isn't writing or editing you can find him at sci-tech conventions, building the latest LEGO city or pampering his cat, Tea. You can follow him on Twitter @MarMackerman.