Eight Thrift Tips for Your Next Goodwill Trip
By Alana Sesow
Planning a Goodwill shopping spree? Whether you’re a first-time customer or a Goodwill pro, check out these eight tips for maximizing your thrift trip and finding the best secondhand treasures:
- Make a plan. Goodwill sells almost any good-condition item you can find in your home, which means our inventory is large and diverse. Before you set foot in our store, know the purpose of your trip and plan accordingly. Decorating your new apartment? Head straight to our furniture and wares sections. Thrifting a formal outfit? Search our racks of dresses, blazers, slacks, shoes, and your favorite-colored tops. Looking for a fun way to pass the time with friends? Explore whatever catches your eye, or take the Goodwill Date Night Challenge.
- Make time. Thrifting is a marathon, not a sprint. Because every item at Goodwill is unique, searching one rack of clothing or one shelf of home goods might take longer than it would at a retailer with mass-produced items. Expect your Goodwill outing to last longer than a trip to a typical retail store, and remember that patience and focus are key to discovering secondhand treasures.
- Know the sales. No matter when you visit Goodwill, there’s always something on sale. Every day, Goodwill offers select clothing and wares at 50% off, indicated by the color on the price tag. Additionally, military members, students and seniors receive a 20% discount on certain weekdays, and Goodwill offers special sales and giveaways for our social media followers throughout the year.
- Shop out of season. When temperatures reach triple digits, don’t be afraid to browse our outerwear section or search for your next pair of winter boots. Out-of-season items are frequently donated, but commonly overlooked when they reach the sales floor. You’ll be ready when the seasons change, and you might even find some brand-name or new-with-tags apparel along the way.
- Shop outside your section. Remember that sizes vary from brand to brand, and there are a range of styles within both women’s and men’s clothing. Plus, mixing styles, colors and cuts is an easy way to update your wardrobe for the upcoming season. Don’t be afraid to experiment!
- Get creative. You don’t need to have Martha Stewart skills to upcycle something from Goodwill. With a little bit of creativity, you can transform a teapot into a planter, a basket into wall décor, or a pair of jeans into a dog toy. Visit our Pinterest boards for more ideas.
- Use the one-in, one-out rule. Every time you visit Goodwill, set a goal to donate at least as many items as you buy. Not only does donating reduce household clutter, but it also supports Goodwill’s programs and services that help local job seekers gain the skills they need for employment. Goodwill makes donating easy by accepting items at all Lincoln and York locations during store hours.
- Visit often. At Goodwill, no two thrift trips are alike. Because our employees place new items on the sales floor every day, even back-to-back visits to the same Goodwill location can be unique. With five Lincoln and York stores open seven days a week, the possibilities are multiplied.