Walmart announced Tuesday, July 21, that it will close all stores on Thanksgiving Day 2020, saying that it wants to have its employees spend time with their families during the coronavirus. The move marks the first major indication of how COVID will affect Black Friday store shopping, which for almost a decade kicked off with big crowds on the turkey feast and expanded into Friday.
The closures, affecting both Walmart and Sam’s Club stores, mark a huge departure from Walmart’s tradition of kicking off Black Friday in-store doorbuster sales on the Thanksgiving holiday, which falls on November 26 this year, Business Insider reports.
"We know this has been a trying year, and our associates have stepped up. We hope they will enjoy a special Thanksgiving Day at home with their loved ones," John Furner, the president and CEO of Walmart US, said in a statement. "We are certainly thankful to our people for all of their efforts."
Walmart typically opens its stores during regular hours on Thanksgiving and ropes off the parts devoted to Black Friday sales and merchandise until doorbuster sales kick off in the evening.