FORT MYERS, Fla. (Consumer Reports) - Whether you're shopping, traveling, or looking for a good hotel, companies can make life a lot easier this time of year.
Or they can be a royal pain in the you-know-what.
Consumer Reports is out with its "Naughty & Nice" list of retailers, based on their purchase and return policies.
"It's looking at companies, and in some cases their practices, to see if we like them or not," says Consumer Reports' Tod Marks. He says results are based on a review of how consumer-friendly a company is during the holidays.
Nordstrom lands on this year's "Nice" list. The retailer offers free shipping for products purchased online, and free returns on orders of any size.
Kohl's "No questions asked" return policy - available online and in stores - is something many of its competitors don't offer. It applies to all purchases, and there are no time restrictions.
But other company return policies may leave you with a big lump of coal for the holiday.
For instance, Tiger Direct has a laundry list of conditions you have to meet in order to return a product and get your money back.
"They can hit you with a restocking fee of up to 25 percent," Marks says. "That's more than most other companies charge."
Two airlines also landed on the "Naughty" list, including Delta.
"When I bought a round-trip $248 non-refundable fare," Marks said, "Delta offered me the chance for 'peace of mind' to upgrade to a refundable fare for $737. That's nearly triple that of my original fare!"
Spirit airlines offers low fares, but if your carry-on bag doesn't fit below the seat in front of you, the airline charges as much as $100.
If you're looking for a place to stay, the moderately priced Drury Hotels make this year's "Nice" list. A hot breakfast and dinner is included in the price of your room, along with free wireless Internet.