Target will no longer open its stores on Thanksgiving Day, making a permanent shift to the unofficial start of the holiday season that was suspended during the pandemic.

“What started as a temporary measure driven by the pandemic is now our new standardā€”one that recognizes our ability to deliver on our guests’ holiday wishes both within and well beyond store hours,” Target CEO Brian Cornell wrote in a note to employees. “You don’t have to wonder whether this is the last Thanksgiving you’ll spend with family and friends for a while because Thanksgiving store hours are one thing we won’t ‘get back to’ when the pandemic finally subsides.”

Target is the first major retailer to make such a permanent move during the pandemic.

Photo courtesy Target