If you’ve never been to an outdoor flea market, there are a few things you should know. They’re open year round, weather-dependent, and can be picked over by pickpockets. Keep reading for some tips on how to make the most of your shopping experience. Also, be sure to dress in layers, apply sunscreen, and wear comfortable shoes. Also, keep in mind that the flea market can be hot and muggy so plan accordingly.
When choosing the weather to attend an outdoor flea market, consider that the conditions can vary greatly. You may find that it is wet, muddy, or even snow-covered at times. Wear layers and shoes you don’t mind getting dirty, and check for signs of rain. It may also be necessary to bring a hand truck or dolly. While the prices may be low, vendors are often willing to negotiate.
There are several indoor and outdoor flea markets around the country. Some of these markets are seasonal and open only during certain times of the year. In some states, you can find a flea market every weekend. Some outdoor flea markets are seasonal, but others are open year-round. If you’re visiting from out of town, be sure to call ahead.
The key to good bargains when outdoor flea market shopping is to know how to negotiate. Most flea market vendors will give you their first price, and you can use your negotiating skills to haggle for better prices. Always be polite to dealers and remember to pack a snack and refill your water bottle. Be prepared to haggle and make friends! There’s no shame in getting your bargain, but it’s not always easy.
Arrive early. Many flea markets have both indoor and outdoor areas. Those with indoor spaces usually have more expensive items, so try to get good bargains by shopping outdoors. You may have to wade through more junk outside, but the deals will be worth it. Make sure to bring cash to avoid paying too much for the same item. Besides cash, you can also use credit cards at outdoor flea markets if you don’t have enough cash.
There are many ways to avoid pickpockets when outdoor flea market-shopping. One of the easiest ways is to keep your bag zippered. This will deter pickpockets, as they will be forced to move on to a more obvious victim. If you’re a woman, look for a bag with an internal zipper pocket. For men, carry your wallet in your front pocket. Avoid carrying a bulky wallet, which is easy to steal and makes you look like a tourist.
A pickpocket isn’t likely to have a large, visible amount of cash, so if you’re not carrying much, keep your hands and pockets empty. The best way to avoid this type of crime is to avoid crowds. If there are a large number of people, you’re likely to be targeted by many people. If you feel uncomfortable in a crowd, consider wearing a more comfortable outfit.
Expecting high-quality goods
While outdoor flea markets are known for a large assortment of secondhand items, you can still expect high-quality wares. Some vendors are even savvy enough to operate on social media, such as Facebook Marketplace and Instagram. Another way to get high-quality secondhand items is to check out local sales sites. Always ask vendors if they’ve sanitized their goods, so that you know what you’re getting.
Regardless of the season, the most important thing to remember when purchasing goods at an outdoor flea market is to prepare for the unpredictable weather. Don’t forget to layer up, especially if you’re visiting at early morning or late in the evening. Bobbie Perkins, an antiques dealer, recommends carrying coal-miner headlamps to keep a low profile when negotiating with vendors. Lastly, bring plenty of cash. While some vendors accept credit cards, they always carry cash. Whether you’re shopping on a small scale or in a large quantity, having cash is always a better bargaining position.