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American Eagle Return Policy: The Complete Guide [2024]

Key Takeways:

  • Full refunds are provided for returns made with a receipt
  • Returns without a receipt are eligible for store credit at the item’s current price
  • There is no time limit for returns or exchanges
  • Returns can be made at any AE or Aerie store in the U.S. or by mail
  • Shipping costs are non-refundable for online returns

American Eagle Outfitters (AEO) is a leading clothing and accessories retailer known for its trendy yet affordable jeans, tops, dresses, and more for men and women. With over 1,000 stores worldwide and a popular online shop at, American Eagle makes it convenient to find the latest fashions. The company also stands behind its products with a flexible return policy designed to ensure customer satisfaction.

Overview of the American Eagle Return Policy

American Eagle accepts returns for any reason if you’re not completely satisfied with your purchase. For returns made with a receipt or other proof of purchase, you’ll receive a full refund to your original payment method. If you don’t have the receipt, you can still return items for store credit equal to the current selling price. There are no time limits for returns or exchanges.

  • The first American Eagle Outfitters store opened in 1977 in Novi, Michigan.
  • AE is known for its popular jeans, having sold over 25 million pairs per year at its peak.
  • American Eagle has over 1,000 store locations across the United States, Canada, Mexico, and Hong Kong.

American eagle Outfitters Return Methods

Returns can be made at any American Eagle or Aerie store location in the U.S. free of charge. Alternatively, you can return items by mail using either the original packaging or a new box. Online returns include a prepaid shipping label but a $5 fee is deducted from the refund amount to cover return shipping costs. Refunds are issued based on the original payment method:

  • Purchases made by credit or debit card are refunded to the same card
  • PayPal purchases are credited back to your PayPal account
  • Returns without a receipt are refunded as store credit/gift card

American Eagle Return Process

To make a return in-store, simply bring the items you wish to return to any American Eagle or Aerie store in the U.S. along with the receipt or proof of purchase if you have it. The store associate can look up your purchase if you don’t have the receipt.

For mail returns, fill out the online return portal on to indicate which items you are returning.

Print the prepaid shipping label and affix it to your return package, then drop it off with your carrier of choice.

A $5 return shipping fee is subtracted from your refund total.

Exceptions and Special Cases

Customized items are not eligible for return. Swimwear and bikini bottoms are also non-returnable if the hygienic liner is removed. American Eagle reserves the right to refuse returns in cases of suspected fraud or abuse. The company may also delay returns in these situations while an investigation is conducted.

Tips for a Successful Return

  • Keep your receipts and bring them when making in-store returns for the fastest refund
  • Use the original packaging if possible when returning by mail
  • Leave tags attached and ensure items are unworn and undamaged
  • Contact customer service if you encounter any issues with your return
  • American Eagle’s annual revenue exceeded $5 billion for fiscal year 2021.
  • Digital sales accounted for 45% of AE’s total revenue in 2021, up from 25% in 2019, driven by strong growth in online shopping.
  • American Eagle Outfitters, Inc. also owns intimates brand Aerie, which has seen 27 consecutive quarters of double-digit growth as of Q4 2021.

Competitor Comparison

Abercrombie & Fitch, another popular teen retailer, has a similar return policy to American Eagle with a few key differences:

  • A&F accepts returns within 60 days vs no time limit at AE
  • Abercrombie requires a receipt for all returns, while AE allows non-receipted returns for store credit
  • Online returns are free with A&F, compared to AE’s $5 return shipping fee


In my opinion, American Eagle has the better return policy overall. AE’s lack of a strict return window and ability to make returns without a receipt for store credit offers customers more flexibility. However, Abercrombie gets the edge for cost savings on online returns by covering return shipping fees.

  • American Eagle recently launched a new sub-brand called Offline by Aerie focused on activewear and athleisure.
  • In 2021, AE began offering clothing rentals as part of a partnership with rental platform CaaStle.
  • American Eagle has pledged to be carbon neutral by 2030 and use more sustainable materials in its clothing lines.

American Eagle offers a generous and user-friendly return policy to ensure customers are satisfied with their purchases. By allowing receipt-free returns, imposing no time limits, and accepting returns both in stores and by mail, AE makes it easy and convenient to return items you don’t want. Following the tips in this guide will help ensure a smooth return process so you can shop with confidence.

In-store returns are refunded immediately. Mailed returns take 5-7 business days to process once received at the warehouse.

You can still return without a receipt for store credit at the item’s current price.

Returns to stores are always free. Online returns have a $5 return shipping fee deducted.

Swimwear can only be returned if the hygienic liner is still in place and has not been removed.

No, American Eagle accepts returns made at any time after purchase as long as items are in new condition.

Refunds are issued to the original payment method. Returns without a receipt are refunded as store credit.

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