Outdoor retailer REI has said it will be closed on Black Friday this year — and every year after.
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Instead of participating in the busiest shopping day of the year, the company will pay its 16,000 employees to "enjoy time outside." All of the company's operations will be closed the day after Thanksgiving, including stores, distribution centers, call centers, and headquarters. Any online orders made on Black Friday won't be processed or shipped until the following day.
If this news sounds familiar, it's because REI has closed every Black Friday for the last seven years, but this time it's permanent. It's all part of the company's Opt Outside movement, which has advocated for causes important to the company and its customers, including environmental welfare, inclusivity, and responsible consumerism.
REI will be closed on Black Friday. Employees will be paid and, along with customers, encouraged to go outside instead of shop. pic.twitter.com/j9cIaZ0vjM— PostSecret (@postsecret) October 8, 2022
"Opt Outside has always been about prioritizing the experience of our employees — choosing the benefits of time outside over a day of consumption and sales,” President and CEO Eric Artz said in a statement. Making the change permanent "will serve as a yearly reminder of this commitment to doing the right thing for the co-op community."