Stores Are Going to Be Open Crazy Long Hours This Year

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Daniel Acker / Bloomberg / Getty Images

Like usual, kids can’t wait for Christmas to arrive this year. But there’s another group that is perhaps even more eager for Christmas to get here: retail employees working multiple overnight shifts at stores trying to woo last-minute shoppers.

Desperate parents, Toys R Us has got you covered. The national toy store chain just announced that Toys R Us locations nationwide will be open 87 hours in a row, beginning at 6 a.m. this Saturday, Dec. 21, continuing on through Tuesday, Dec. 24, at 9 p.m. Let us pause for a moment and pass along good thoughts to any shoppers — or workers — who find themselves wearily, confusingly wandering the store aisles at, say, 3 a.m. on the pre-morning of Monday or Tuesday.

As impressive (and possibly scary) as Toys R Us’ marathon seems, it comes in second place among retailers pushing the envelope in terms of consecutive store hours before Christmas. Earlier in the season, Kohl’s passed along the news that its stores would open at 6 a.m. on Friday, December 20, and wouldn’t close until 6 p.m. on Christmas Eve. That adds up to a total of 111 hours in a row.

The upcoming store hour policies blow away the retailer marathons that began on Thanksgiving night at Kmart and some entire malls, which were open for a mere maximum of 41 hours in a row.

Look for Macy’s and other retailers to join the fray soon and announce (nearly) never-ending store hours of their own leading up to Christmas. It’s unlikely, however, that any of the competitors will match the non-stop opening at the Toys R Us location in New York City’s Times Square. The store opened at 8 a.m. on Sunday, Dec. 1, and it hasn’t closed since. It will remain open until 10 p.m. on Christmas Eve, for a total of 566 consecutive hours of around-the-clock shopping.

Bear in mind that while Kohl’s, Toys R Us, and others will keep offering discounts and promotions until stores finally, mercifully close, the prices may not be nearly as good as consumers found earlier in the season. The Skylanders Swap Force Starter Pack, for instance, is being advertised at Toys R Us on sale for $59.99. That’s a discount of $15 off the original price. But Toys R Us, Walmart, and others were selling the same video game pack for just $37 during Black Friday week.