9 Thrift Store Shopping Tips To Save Money

Shopping

4 Min Read

Person saving money while thrift store shopping, rifling through clothes on hanger.

If you’re planning on taking a break from social commerce, and renewing your closet on a budget, you might be thinking of going thrift store shopping.

But while shopping at a thrift store is definitely an inexpensive alternative to department stores, there are still some tips and tricks that can help you save even more money.

How to Go Thrift Store Shopping?

If it’s your first time visiting a thrift store, you should be aware that it takes time to browse your favorite pieces through piles of products. So be prepared that the thrift store shopping experience might not be close to a shopping experience at a boutique.

What’s more, it’s a good idea to visit thrift stores often, because people usually bring in products daily that are then put on the racks. And don’t forget to bring your own second-hand clothes with you if you’d like to donate while you declutter your closet.

9 Hacks to Save Money at the Thrift Store

Let’s dive right into it to how to save money shopping at the thrift store.

1. Choose Small Towns Over Wealthy Neighborhoods

Thrift store shopping in small towns is often more cost-efficient than shopping in wealthy suburbs and city neighborhoods.

In fact, since small towns don’t usually receive enough donations to stock their store, they often get inventory from large cities. This diversifies the selection while keeping prices low.

2. Make a Plan

Thrift store shopping without a pre-determined plan is much like grocery shopping on an empty stomach.

Simply make a list of items you’d like to buy at the thrift store to avoid impulse buying, and ultimately overspending.

3. Take Time to Browse Your Favorites

To find nice and quality clothes, you’ll most likely need to spend some time browsing. While browsing, you might come across coffee-stained pants, stretched-out t-shirts and blouses, pilled sweaters, and more.

But don’t let undesirable items like these discourage you. It will eventually pay off to take your time browsing to discover an occasional diamond in the rough. And if you find an item that needs a bit of love but totally fits your vibe, buying a cheap de-piller for a must-have sweater is always an option as well.

4. Don’t Settle

Just because you want to save money on clothes doesn’t mean that anything will do. Don’t settle for anything, meaning don’t buy clothing or other items that don't match your style.

After all, what’s the point of buying stuff you don’t love? If you're not excited by the item when you purchase it, you’ll never be happy wearing or using it. What’s more, if you're not going to use what you buy, then it’s just like throwing money out of the window.

5. Never Pay Too Much

When shopping at a thrift store, always remember your purpose – you’re there to save money. Sometimes items are marked at too high of a price. It doesn’t make sense to pay $12 for a used shirt when you can buy a brand new one on clearance at the shopping mall.

6. Find Out When the Store Offers Discounts

Generally speaking, local thrift stores often offer discounts on certain items or categories.

To make sure you’re getting the most out of your thrift store shopping experience, ask the store when they usually offer discounts and shop exclusively during those times. You may find that on certain days of the week, certain items have an additional discount.

7. Shop Off-Season

Just like in retail stores, you’ll find the best deals on clothes in thrift stores when the demand is low. For example, you could potentially find an excellent leather bomber jacket for only $5 in summer just because everyone else is buying shorts and swimsuits.

So make sure to always keep a list of clothes you’d like to buy, even if it means that you won’t be able to buy them until next year.

8. Shop at Least Twice a Week

While it may sound counterintuitive, the more you visit the thrift store, the more chances you have of finding the best deals.

However, you don’t need to spend a lot of time – quickly browse to see if the store received any new standout pieces or to see if they have discounted an item you have your eye on.

9. Bring In Your Own Clothes

One of the best things about some thrift stores is that you can bring in your clothes and exchange them for new pieces. Chances are, your wardrobe is full of clothes that you're not wearing anymore.

So use the chance to bring in your clothes and get store credit, with which you can get new clothes from the thrift store.

Ready to Save Money While Thrift Store Shopping?

Thrift stores are an inexpensive way to update your wardrobe and home supplies and are one of the many easy ways to save money. These nine tips can help you rack up your clothing savings at thrift stores even more and get the most out of your money.

And always remember to have a plan. It may be easiest to keep a running list of items you’d love to dupe on a wishlist or even create a savings bucket just for thrifting.

See how Monorail can help you plan your shopping.

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