The shift against Black Friday is continuing, with REI announcing it will be store policy to close its doors on the day after Thanksgiving. The Seattle-based outdoor goods retailer has remained closed on Black Friday each year since 2015 as part of its #OptOutside movement, per CBS News. "But until now it was a decision made year to year and not a permanent policy," CNN reports. The company now says it will pay its 16,000 employees to spend time outside on each and every Black Friday—a day that will see REI's 178 stores shuttered, along with company headquarters, distribution locations, and call centers.
"Opt Outside has always been about prioritizing the experience of our employees, choosing the benefits of time outside over a day of consumption and sales," says CEO Eric Artz. This could be seen as a one-up on rival Patagonia, which no longer hosts Black Friday sales, per CBS. Patagonia also encourages shoppers to get outside on Black Friday, which occurs on Nov. 25 this year, though not to the point of closing its stores. (Last year, the company donated $10 million in Black Friday proceeds to environmental-focused nonprofits.) Shoppers can still place orders through REI's website on Black Friday, but processing won't begin until a day later. (Read more Black Friday stories.)