Will Thanksgiving dinner soon become a thing of times past? After opening its Herald Square flagship at an unprecedented hour -- 8 p.m. -- on Thanksgiving Day last year, Macy's has announced that it plans to open its doors to shoppers across the country on Thanksgiving Day this year. What's more, those doors will be open a full two hours earlier than last year.
Macy's decided to push the opening to 6 p.m. in response to "significant, sustained customer interest in last year's opening on Thanksgiving," according to a company spokesperson. And lest you start to feel badly for the employees who will have to work through one of America's biggest holidays, the retailer says it is attempting to staff the extra hours entirely with volunteers, and is promising both extra compensation and time off to those associates on Black Friday. The spokesperson claims that the "majority" of shifts have already been filled.
Macy's was one of several U.S. retailers who got an early start on Black Friday sales last year, and the move paid off: According to the National Retail Foundation, nearly a third of shoppers -- 45 million people in sum -- hit stores on Thanksgiving, up 27 percent from 2012. Retailers are facing an uphill battle this season after a too-warm fall affected sales. At the beginning of 2014, Macy's laid off more than 2,500 employees.