eBay
  • Daily Deals
  • Collections
  • Get inspired!
  Home > Help >Returning an item
Help
Search Help pages
(Does not search for items or products)
 Searchtips
Returning an item


You can return items you purchased on eBay, depending on the seller's return policy.

Here's what to expect when you need to return an item.

Return an item

Before you request a return, check the seller's return policy in the listing for the seller's return period and other information.

Some sellers are enrolled in eBay hassle-free returns, our automated return process. Other sellers have their own process for handling returns. Depending on the item and the seller, you may have different return options.

To return an item for a refund or replacement:
  1. Find the item in My eBay and select Return this item from the More actions drop-down menu.

  2. Select the reason for the return. Depending on the seller's return preferences, we may put you in touch with the seller directly.

  3. If the seller uses eBay hassle-free returns or chooses to use an eBay-generated postage label, we provide you with a return postage label and packing slip. If a postage label isn't available for the item, we ask you to contact the seller about alternative shipping arrangements. The seller may also provide you their own postage label.

  4. Pack the item carefully. Include the packing slip, apply the postage label, and send the item back to the seller. You must return the item within 14 calendar days of requesting the return.

  5. If an eBay-generated postage label is used, you can track the status of the returned item in the Purchase history section of My eBay. Find the returned item and click View return details from the More actions drop-down menu.

  6. The seller should refund you within 6 business days of receiving the returned item. If ths doesn't happen you can ask us to step in and help.

Things to keep in mind:

  • Request a return by the time specified in the Return policy section of the listing.

  • If we ask you to contact the seller, work with the seller directly and follow their return instructions.

  • Otherwise, you're issued a return postage label and packing slip. Then:

    • When returning an item for a refund, post the item back to the seller within 14 calendar days of requesting the return.

  • Return the item in the same condition as you received it. See the item condition policy for returns for more information.

Return postage charges

Returns are posted using Collect+ Economy, Royal Mail or Parcelforce labels based on package weight.

Return postage charges are based on rates negotiated with Collect+, Royal Mail and Parcelforce. These charges may differ from actual rates to post an item, and are subject to change.

Service

Weight

Price (incl. VAT)

Royal Mail Tracked Returns 48

Up to 2kg

2-5 kg

5-10 kg

£2.78

£7.57

£7.98

Parcelforce Worldwide Express 48 (Tracked)

10-20 kg

£9.12

Parcelforce Default (Tracked)

Unknown

Up to 2 kg

2-5 kg

£7.57

£4.50

£5.90

Collect+ Tracked: Drop at shop-deliver to door (3-5 working days)

5-10 kg

£7.90

Collect+ Tracked Default

Unknown

£5.96

If an item is lost by the carrier, eBay managed returns allows us to reimburse you and you'll be able keep the item price.

Refunds

When the item isn't as described: 

If you return an item because it's not as described in the listing, arrives damaged, or is missing parts, then your refund is:

Total purchase price (includes item cost and other charges) + Original postage (if paid by the buyer) = Total refund

In these situations, the seller can't charge a restocking fee and the seller pays the return postage charges.

All other returns:

If you return an item for any other reason, including changing your mind about a purchase.

Your return postage charge usually isn't refunded. Check the listing Return policy for specifics on postage charges.

For this type of return, your refund is usually the total purchase price, including item cost, plus original outbound postage and other charges, less: return postage (if specified in the listing Return policy).

When to ask us to step in and help

Most returns and refunds go smoothly, but if a seller doesn't issue you a refund, you can ask us to step in and help. Depending on the seller's return method, timelines may differ. We guide you to the correct timing as part of your return request in My eBay, but for reference:

  • You can ask us to step in and help if the seller doesn't issue a refund within 6 business days of receiving the returned item, or within 6 business days of the estimated delivery date for the returned item if no tracking is used. You have 10 business days to ask us to step in and help after the seller's time to issue a refund has passed.

  • If a seller isn't using eBay hassle-free returns, you can ask us to step in and help 8 calendar days after you request a return, if the seller doesn't respond to your return request.

If you use alternative postage arrangements, return postage charges won't be included in any eBay Money Back Guarantee refunds, even if the seller agreed to pay return postage charges. Learn more about the eBay Money Back Guarantee.

Alternative return postage arrangements

You may need to use alternative shipping arrangements when:   

Insurance isn't available for return postage. If either you or the seller prefers that an item be returned with insurance, purchase your own return postage instead of using the return postage label provided and input tracking details.
We allow one return package for each return. If you need multiple packages to post a return, you need to make alternate postage arrangements for the remaining packages.
Contact the seller to agree on alternative postage arrangements or, in the case of local pickup, a way of getting the item back to seller safely.

When the seller is responsible for return postage charges and you need to make alternative postage arrangements, contact the seller to agree on the service and cost before sending the item. Make sure that you include the packing slip, tracking, and for items valued at £750 or more, delivery confirmation.

When using alternative postage arrangements, either you or the seller pays for return postage charges.

Frequently asked questions

If you've missed the deadline to start a return, you can contact the seller to see if the seller is willing to accept a late return. Use Messages in My eBay when contacting the seller to keep a record of your conversation.
We ask that you post back the item to the seller within 14 calendar days. If 6 business days have passed since you started a return for a refund, and you haven't sent the item yet, contact the seller to see if they're still willing to accept your return. Use Messages in My eBay when contacting the seller to keep a record of your conversation.
If the seller is using eBay hassle-free returns, you can see the status of your return request in My eBay—we show you tracking details for the return package, let you know when the item has been delivered to the seller, and when you can expect your refund. If it's been 6 business days since the returned item was delivered to the seller and the seller hasn't refunded you, you can ask us to step in and help.
Important: If you posted the item later than the seller's stated time frame, we don't require the seller to issue a refund.
We typically allow a little extra time for delivery. After sufficient time has passed, and the seller still hasn't received your returned item, you can ask us to step in and help.
In most cases, sellers handle returns quickly and easily. However, you may want to ask us to step in and help with the eBay Money Back Guarantee in a few instances:
  • You're unable to return the item because it's unsafe to post (such as a ruptured and leaking battery) or broken beyond repair.

  • You've already returned the item, but you and the seller aren't able to resolve a problem.

  • You've received a replacement, but you and the seller still aren't able to resolve a problem.

Learn more about the eBay Money Back Guarantee.
If the seller is using eBay hassle-free returns, you have one opportunity to return an item or multiple items for each transaction, depending on the listing:
  • Lots, sets, and bundled items

    You have one opportunity to return the entire quantity of the sale. For example, you buy a 5-piece place setting of dinner ware, which includes a teacup, saucer, dinner plate, salad plate, and a bread plate.

    You have one opportunity to return the entire 5-piece place setting. You can't return a few pieces of the place setting, for instance, just the teacup and saucer. (To return one item of a set, contact the seller.)

  • Multi-quantity listings

    You have one opportunity to return any quantity of purchased items. For example, you buy T-shirts, and in the listing you select a quantity of 5.

    You can return any quantity of the 5 T-shirts, but you only have one opportunity to return items. For instance, if you return 2 of the 5 T-shirts, you can't return the remaining 3 later.

  • Items from multiple listings from the same seller

    You have one opportunity to return each item individually. For example, you buy 3 books from a single seller. The seller listed each book  individually, but you paid for the books in a single step with eBay checkout.

    You need to return each book individually.

If the seller isn't using eBay hassle-free returns, contact the seller directly when you start your return request.
In some cases, before you can print the postage label for your return, we may need to verify a few details with the seller. The label is printable within 2 business days.
When using an eBay postage label, you can reprint a return postage label, but you can only use one label. 
If a return requires multiple packages, work with the seller to make alternate postage arrangements for either the remaining packages or for all of the packages.

Misuse of eBay hassle-free returns or the eBay Money Back Guarantee

If we determine that you've abused eBay hassle-free returns or the eBay Money Back Guarantee, you may be subject to a range of actions, including limits on buying and selling privileges and account suspension. Examples include:

  • Selecting an inaccurate reason for return.

  • Disregarding item conditions required for return.

Contact us

Have a question? We can help.

 Contact us

Ask eBay members

Get help from other eBay members. Visit the Answer Centre to post a question.