Trip to the flea market

Due to boredom and frugality, I recently gathered the kids and ventured to the flea market. I had a coupon for free admission (normally $3) and there is no charge for kids, so I figured we had nothing to lose. That being said, I was skeptical that we would find anything useful to buy. After all, the term “flea market” originated in France where the used items in outdoor markets were full of full fleas. (I think the flea market industry could use a good marketing person!)

To my surprise, the flea market was full of uninfested goodies. For example, I bought two really great cantaloupes and eight ears of corn directly from the farmer for $2.50. My daughter spent some of her allowance on a mood ring that immediately turned her finger green (tip: when I got home, I coated the ring with nail polish—works like a charm!) My son spent $3 on a Pokémon card (Venusar) that is currently selling on eBay for $8.99. Other expenses included $1 for two trips down the giant slide and $2.25 for three popsicles.

Bottom line is that we spent $10.75 for an afternoon’s worth of treasure hunting. Not too bad considering a trip to the matinee (with treats) would have run more than $30. Yet I feel like I didn’t even begin to tap the flea market’s potential.

Before you head to your local flea market, check out these shopping tips from The Dollar Stretcher. If you have flea market success stories or shopping tips to share, please add them to the comments section.

Kim McGrigg is the former Manager of Community and Media Relations for MMI.