H&M is the latest brand to charge for returns — and that might be good for the planet

by | Sep 19, 2023

Two drivers unload boxes from a delivery truck.
Photo by Christopher Dilts / Bloomberg via Getty Images

The latest fashion trend in the UK seems to be brands charging customers to return items. While that sucks for consumer pocketbooks, it probably has a positive environmental impact. Free returns come with an environmental cost, namely more pollution and waste.

H&M is the latest brand to start charging for returns in the UK, BBC reported today. It joins Zara, Uniqlo, and several other clothing brands cutting their own costs by nixing free returns. The parent company that owns Zara, Inditex, and H&M make up the two biggest clothing retailers worldwide. If these policies start gaining traction outside of the UK, they could make a significant dent in the fashion industry’s environmental footprint.

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