Walmart will be closed on Thanksgiving, will they go back to 24 hour shopping?

These photos of Britney Spears and Katie Holmes have nothing to do with this story except that they’re shopping at Walmart.

At the beginning of the pandemic, Walmart reduced hours from being open 24/7 to 7am to 8:30 pm. In November they extended their evening hours to 11 pm, and on Saturday they changed their opening time to 6am, with Tuesdays from 6 to 7 am reserved for seniors. Walmart has just announced that all their stores throughout the US will be closed on Thanksgiving day, which marks the second time that they’ve closed for Thanksgiving. Black Friday, the biggest shopping day of the year, was creeping into Thanksgiving for some retailers, but Walmart and also Target are putting the brakes on that.

As they did in 2020, the company has announced that it will be closing all U.S. stores on Nov. 26 as a “thank you” to their employees for their hard work throughout the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“Throughout the pandemic, our associates have been nothing short of heroic in how they have stepped up to serve our customers and their communities. Sam Walton said, ‘Our people make the difference,’ and that’s never been more true than it is right now,” Dacona Smith, executive vice president and chief operating officer for Walmart U.S., said in a statement, quoting the chain’s founder.

“Closing our stores on Thanksgiving Day is one way we’re saying ‘thank you’ to our teams for their dedication and hard work this year,” Smith added. “We hope everyone will take the opportunity to be with their loved ones during what’s always a special time.”

In addition to closing for Thanksgiving last year, Walmart also announced that it gave out roughly $428 million worth of bonuses for employees.

The bonuses, which were a way of thanking employees “for their ongoing contributions and dedication to serving customers,” were paid out last summer.

[From People]

I wish Walmart would also still require masks but that’s a different issue and that ship has sailed. Giving out bonuses to employees is not the same as paying a living wage and Walmart knows this. They can say they’re giving out bonuses but how much does that benefit the average worker?

It’s a good thing that not as many people have to work the graveyard shift (I’m assuming stores will still have cleaning or skeleton staff). Plus there’s a labor shortage now and less people are willing to work overnights. It looks like 24 hour shopping is a thing of the past in the US. Even 7-11 stores probably won’t be open all the time. Of course there will still be other convenience stores as gas stations like Sheetz and Wawa, but we won’t be able to do our grocery shopping in the middle of night. I’m ok with that. When I lived overseas the stores were all closed on Sunday and that seems like a kinder way to treat frontline workers. We learned this past year how much we need and appreciate their hard work.

Katie Holmes seen buying groceries at Walmart while filming scenes for 'All We Had' in Queens



Kate Holmes is shown filming All We Had in a Queens Walmart in 2015. Britney Spears is shown in a Louisiana Walmart in 2013. I am not being shady by using a photo of her for the frontpage! I just needed a pic of someone at Walmart smiling. Credit:

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18 Responses to “Walmart will be closed on Thanksgiving, will they go back to 24 hour shopping?”

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  1. Agirlandherdog says:

    They’ll still open at 3am or 4am Friday morning. So even though the stores may be closed to the public on Thanksgiving, they’ll still have employees working on Thanksgiving to prepare for opening early on Black Friday.

    • goofpuff says:

      Agreed. This feels performative. The store is closed but don’t they need to do a lot of work for Black Friday and they open really early.

    • Christine says:

      I work retail adjacent and our store has people stay later Wed night after store closing to set everything up so that it’s ready for Friday morning. So who knows. Opening at 3-4 however, that doesn’t leave you much time to actually enjoy Thanksgiving, especially if you’re doing a dinner with family. I’d want to be in bed by 8 if I had to get up that early.

    • Jubblybits says:

      I work at a Walmart warehouse that supplies the stores. We were hoping to be closed as well and were told it was up to management. They said no. My team had to not only work but go in an hour early. At 4am.

    • Christine says:

      As a person who has worked at grocery stores and Target all through high school and college (Target has always been closed on Thanksgiving), this feels like an attempt to avoid time and a half, which MANY employees who don’t have family demanding they show up to eat a turkey really count on, right before the holidays. You’ve already shown us your ass, Walmart, stop pretending you are doing any of your employees a favor.

  2. escondista says:

    God I hope some places that are desperate for employees start bending the knee. The power imbalance is so out of hand.

  3. Amelie says:

    I came here to comment mostly on Katie Holme’s tragic denim tube dress. That was popular maybe in… 1995?? I realize it was for a movie but the thing is I really thought she was wearing that of her own free will at first because of her legendary questionable fashion choices.

    It is nice Walmart is doing this, but it is the bare minimum. Wow, being closed on Thanksgiving, a national holiday. Ground-breaking! Maybe pay your workers fairly and treat them well! REI has closed its stores on Thanksgiving AND Black Friday for the last few years and I wish more retailers would follow suit. They don’t run Black Friday sales anymore (which is fine because if you are a REI member like me you know they just had their biggest sale of the year lasting a week end of May which ended on Memorial Day). Plus now it’s not just Black Friday, the sales last all weekend into Cyber Monday.

    • BeanieBean says:

      Ah, Ok, she’s filming a movie. It was the open bottle of OJ that got to me, it really bugs me when people eat or drink something in a grocery store before they get to the checkouts. Seems wrong to me.
      And my mom worked retail her whole life, the whole switch to opening at midnight on Thanksgiving or whatever ridiculous hour it was was just appalling. The powers that be give no thought whatsoever to how hard this is for their employees.

  4. Becks1 says:

    Haha I love all your disclaimers about the pictures in this post.

    It’s good that they’re closed on Thanksgiving – an early open on Black Friday still means that employees are going to have to report before that, but I wonder how early? At our Walmart everything big (like the TVs and such) is set out for Black Friday by the Wednesday before, its just shrinkwrapped so no one can get to it. and then for other things like special prices for iphones or whatever I think that’s more just a matter of the prices being in the system for Friday.

    when I worked retail for a department store, we only had to report 15 minutes before the store opened. This was was in a simpler time, 2004, which opened at 6 am on Black Friday and December 26th, so I had to be there at 545. Don’t get me wrong it wasn’t fun, but the people who closed two nights before (since the store was closed Thanksgiving/christmas) did the set up with the signage etc.

    All that to say, I hope this means their employees do get an actual full day off, and that half of them don’t have to report at midnight or something.

  5. Aang says:

    I liked the 24 hour open because an open Walmart parking lot is a safe place for those living in their cars to sleep. Also gives overnight access to bathrooms for car residents.

  6. Lena says:

    Supposedly there’s a labor shortage for these retail jobs. I hope it sticks snd they can finally start raising salaries.

  7. Louise177 says:

    This has nothing to do with thanking employees but economics and maybe a little employee/public outrage. I don’t think stores were doing a lot more business on Thanksgiving day. Also stores were opening at 3 or 4 on Thanksgiving. It was getting ridiculous. There was public and employee backlash for many stores. Some were already scaling back before the pandemic.

  8. Leah says:

    I work retail but in Canada and it feels like there’s a real shift in shopping. Most places here still operate on reduced hours but the companies are still making profits. Less time open means less overhead in terms of staffing, head counts, benefits, utilities even. I think it’ll last post pandemic for maybe a few years especially with online shopping growing and curb side pick up.

  9. emu says:

    Katie has an open orange juice while shopping?!

    • iconoclast59 says:

      My mom used to do that all the time when we went shopping. As long as you keep the container/wrapper to be scanned at checkout, the grocery store doesn’t care.

  10. JanetDR says:

    24 hour stores are good for shift workers too. It’s much easier to buy groceries on the way home than to make a special trip on a day off. But yeah, be closed on holidays!

    • BeanieBean says:

      True, I had a friend who worked swing shift at a lumber mill & she loved being able to pick up groceries on her way home, particularly as the store was pretty much empty. She was able to get in & out in a flash.

  11. KinChicago says:

    I hope things are changing- have to say, seeing people camping outside in the parking lot lines, breaking down doors and trampling others to “get a deal” on thanksgiving day is a nightmare I won’t regret missing yearly on the news.