Tag Archives: REI Garage Sale

Fall Bargain Hunting @ the REI Garage Sale

garage-sale

REI Garage Sale. September 7,8, 14 & 15, 2013. Various Bay Area Locations.

You read the title to this post and I know what you are thinking – bargain and REI are non-sequiturs. True. Except for this well advertised secret. The REI “garage sale.”

REI (as in Really Expensive Indulgence), is famous for quality gear, educated staff, high prices, and a great return policy. It is that great return policy that leads to this Deal Tracker post.

If you shop at REI you probably are aware of the amazing return policy. As in lifetime. The gear’s lifetime, not yours. But even so it is a generous policy. So generous some small-minded folks abuse it. And you can capitalize on their abuse. As long as you have a membership which is only $20. The membership is good for a lifetime – your lifetime.

THE DEAL:

In order to shed the returned tents, backpacks, sleeping bags, pads, clothes, etc. REI holds in-store garage sales. The prices are dirt cheap. Deals that can make you buy stuff you don’t need (warning.) Deals so great you will want to get up very early, put some coffee in a thermos and line-up outside the store a couple of hours before it opens. Seriously.

Note: The garage sale items have tags specifying why the item was returned. A lot of times there is nothing functionally wrong with the item.

LOGISTICS:

REI Garage Sale
The next round of Bay Area garage sales occur on September 7,8, 14 & 15, 2013. Different stores have different dates. That means you have the option of going to a lot of the garage sales.

Things change so just to be sure, call the store to confirm the date and hours.

Saturday, September 7, Garage Sales @ the following Bay Area REI stores:

Sunday, September 8, Garage Sales @ the following Bay Area REI stores:

Saturday & Sunday, September 14 & 15, Garage Sales @ the following Bay Area REI stores:

Here is how the REI folks explain the sale logistics: “Due to the popularity of the first day of this event, we will issue reservation tickets for Saturday shoppers. These tickets will be given out Saturday morning, every half-hour, beginning at 8 am, and will allow 15-minute access to the sale. Twenty tickets will be issued for each 15-minute shopping interval. Only one ticket will be given to each person, and each person must be present to receive one. Please note: Tickets will be issued at the front of the store until the store opens at 10 am. After the store opens, tickets will be issued outside the Used Gear Sale room. Sunday shoppers (where applicable) will not need tickets to access the sale.”

MY TAKE:

If you love a deal and are okay with a bit of a rough and tumble experience, put on your hiking boots and hoof it to the closest REI garage sale.

TIPS: Here are some Deal Tracker tips to enhance your shopping bonanza:

•    Arrive early. You don’t need to camp out the night before (not to scare you but it does happen.) Like most things, the spoils go to the early bird. If you have specific items you need arrive by 7:30 a.m. If you are “sport shopping” you can show up later. There are generally plenty of deals to go around.

•    Get a shopping bag conveniently stationed by the front door. You will want to have something to hold your potential purchases; this stuff can be unwieldy.

•    Bring a friend. You can keep each other from making bad purchases (clothes too big, tent zipper is irreparable, treasure is useless, etc.), aid each other in fending off the wild camping crowd, and help each other assess if the item is really needed.

•    Read the return tag. Read it again. You want to know if the item is defective or just unwanted by the returner who has taken advantage of REI’s famed return policy.

•    Unsure? Put the item in your shopping bag to reassess when you are done hunting and gathering.

•    Be nice to everyone and by all means, no grabbing. This is the time for karma.

•    Find a spot to sift through all the merchandise you put in your shopping bag. Inspect for flaws. Have a heart to heart with yourself whether you NEED the item. Discard your rejects. Head to the register.

•    Ask at the register if they are going to put out more garage sale items. Places with two day sales might put quality merchandise on the showroom floor regularly throughout the day. If you didn’t find what you want you may want to come back for round two.

Note: You can’t return stuff you get at the garage sale and you have to be a member.

Happy shopping!

If you go to the garage sale leave a comment about the great deal you scored. Thanks!

© 2013 Deal Tracker SF. All rights reserved.

Bargain Hunting at REI

tent camping free clip art

                     REI Garage Sale. April 6-7, 2013. Various Bay Area Locations.

You read the title to this post and I know what you are thinking – bargain and REI are non-sequiturs. True. Except for this well advertised secret. The REI “garage sale.”

I love REI and over the years have bought a lot of stuff there. Admittedly most priced with a telltale “9″ as the last number. As in clearance and disqualifying me from any member rebate. Even sticking to the way back clearance racks I have laid out some serious dough in that store.

REI (as in Really Expensive Indulgence), is famous for quality gear, educated staff, high prices, and a great return policy. It is that great return policy that leads to this deal tracker post.

If you shop at REI you probably are aware of the amazing return policy. As in lifetime. The gear’s lifetime, not yours. But even so it is a generous policy. So generous some small-minded folks abuse it. And you can capitalize on their abuse. As long as you have a membership which is only $20. The membership is good for a lifetime – your lifetime.

THE DEAL:

In order to shed the returned tents, backpacks, sleeping bags, pads, clothes, etc. REI holds in-store garage sales. The prices are dirt cheap. Deals that can make you buy stuff you don’t need (warning.) Deals so great you will want to get up very early, put some coffee in a thermos and line-up outside the store a couple of hours before it opens. Seriously.

Note: The garage sale items have tags specifying why the item was returned. A lot of times there is nothing functionally wrong with the item.

LOGISTICS:

REI Garage Sale
The next round of garage sales occur on April 6 & 7, 2013.

Sales will take place at the following Bay Area REI stores:

Here is how the REI folks explain the sale logistics: “Due to the popularity of the first day of this event, we will issue reservation tickets for Saturday shoppers. These tickets will be given out Saturday morning, every half-hour, beginning at 8 am, and will allow 15-minute access to the sale. Twenty tickets will be issued for each 15-minute shopping interval. Only one ticket will be given to each person, and each person must be present to receive one. Please note: Tickets will be issued at the front of the store until the store opens at 10 am. After the store opens, tickets will be issued outside the Used Gear Sale room. Sunday shoppers will not need tickets to access the sale.”

MY TAKE:

If you love a deal and are okay with a bit of a rough and tumble experience, put on your hiking boots and hoof it to the closest REI garage sale.

TIPS: Here are some deal tracker tips to enhance your shopping bonanza:

•    Arrive early. You don’t need to camp out the night before (not to scare you but it does happen.) Like most things, the spoils go to the early bird. If you have specific items you need arrive by 7:30 a.m. If you are “sport shopping” you can show up later. There are generally plenty of deals to go around.

•    Get a shopping bag conveniently stationed by the front door. You will want to have something to hold your potential purchases; this stuff can be unwieldy.

•    Bring a friend. You can keep each other from making bad purchases (clothes too big, tent zipper is irreparable, treasure is useless, etc.), aid each other in fending off the wild camping crowd, and help each other assess if the item is really needed.

•    Read the return tag. Read it again. You want to know if the item is defective or just unwanted by the returner who has taken advantage of REI’s famed return policy.

•    Unsure? Put the item in your shopping bag to reassess when you are done hunting and gathering.

•    Be nice to everyone and by all means, no grabbing. This is the time for karma.
•    Find a spot to sift through all the merchandise you put in your shopping bag. Inspect for flaws. Have a heart to heart with yourself whether you NEED the item. Discard your rejects. Head to the register.

•    Ask at the register if they are going to put out more garage sale items. Since the garage sale is all weekend quality merchandise might be put on the showroom floor regularly throughout the day. If you didn’t find what you want you may want to come by for round two.

Note: You can’t return stuff you get at the garage sale and you have to be a member.

Happy shopping!

If you go to the garage sale leave a comment about the great deal you scored. Thanks!