1. The early bird catches the worm – You need to get there right at the start if you want to get best bargains available.
2. Take plenty of small change and small notes with you; leave your credit cards behind! Think about setting yourself a spending budget, or doing a shopping list as car boot sale bartering can prove extremely addictive!
3. Remember bags – If you’re planning to get a lot, take your own carrier bags, or even a pull-along shopping trolley. It will stop you having to make trips back to the car, and often sellers don’t have bags to give you.
4. Finding collectables – If you are looking for something specific, plan before you arrive, and remain focused as you walk along the lines of busy stalls; it is easy to be distracted! Politely ask sellers if they have anything else they have not yet unpacked.
5. Plan your route – We have so many stalls inside and out we wouldn’t want you to miss anything, so to make sure you don’t miss out, browse in some sort of order; inside then out, or left stalls then right, then you’ll make sure you see all that’s on offer.
6. Be polite – Let sellers unpack instead of diving into their car boots looking for bargains. Also, bear in mind these are not trained shop assistants, it could be their first time doing this kind of thing, so be patient and understanding.
7. Have a good look – Look on, under, around and past the seller’s tables as some of the more interesting or special items may be out of harm’s way. Don’t be afraid to have a closer look and ask questions about books, clothes, jewellery boxes and records etc.
8. Second time around – It is worth looking at stalls a second time because people may have put out new items or moved things around, uncovering something really interesting.
9. Haggle…but not unreasonably – Pitches cost money and sellers deserve a decent price for good quality items. If you consider something to be too expensive bear in mind that sellers often reduce prices later in the day; or if the weather takes a turn for the worse!
10. Examine and inspect what you’re buying – Ask the seller questions about their goods and perhaps ask for a receipt, the deal is between you and the seller only.
Remember ‘Caveat Emptor’: Let the buyer beware!