WASHINGTON — Walmart has announced that for the second year in a row, all of its U.S. store locations will be closed on Thanksgiving Day.
Typically, the country's largest retailer has had its stores open for regular hours during the holiday, with a Black Friday doorbuster sale starting late Thursday evening.
But last year Walmart, and a long list of other retailers, made the decision to keep stores closed on Thanksgiving Day, due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Walmart announced Friday it will keep stores closed again on Thanksgiving Day this year "as a ‘thank you’ to associates for their continued hard work during the pandemic."
The company says that information about Black Friday store hours will be announced at a later date.
Over the past decade, several major retail chains tried to kick off Black Friday sales a day early while creating a new tradition of shoppers heading out after their turkey feast. But those sales cut into Black Friday numbers and some critics called out the stores for not letting workers spend the time with their family.
Despite competition from Thanksgiving Day shopping, Black Friday ranks as either the top or No. 2 sales day of the year.
Last year, online sales for Black Friday hit a new record as Americans chose to do their shopping from home instead of traveling to stores amid the pandemic.
But before Black Friday arrives, retailers will be offering competing deals in early June to compete with Amazon Prime Day. Amazon announced this week Prime Day will be held from June 21 to June 22 in 20 countries, including the U.S., the United Kingdom, Brazil, Italy and Japan.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.