Cheltenham Rocks

How To Boss Your Car Boot Sale

I am a complete novice when it comes to car boots but after countless attempts to sell on various online selling sites I couldn't bear to take and upload any more pictures...

So I had the ingenious idea of heading to a car boot.

I borrowed a clothes rail and pasting table, loaded my car and off I went. I decided on the car boot at Southam on a Sunday afternoon. I say afternoon, but in reality you have to get there in the morning to stand a chance of not been mobbed! Arrive before 10.30am if you want to set up in advance, otherwise you can't enter until noon when all the shoppers arrive. For this privilege it does cost you £11 (instead of the £7 for later entry).

At 10.20am I rolled up feeling rather smug with myself that I had got there at such a good time. Ha! No. There were already so many cars there and shoppers too (it turns out shoppers can be let in early too if they pay slightly more).

As soon as I opened my door I was in a swarm of people wanting to get their hands on my goodies. Thankfully my friend had advised me that I should make sure that all my stands/rails were on top of my stuff so that I could quickly open the boot, get out the stands and then shut the boot until the table was up, rail was assembled and I'd set out my stall.

Southam Car Boot 3

I can see you thinking ah, what a good idea... Yes it was, but what I didn't do in advance was make note of how to put up the table successfully or build the rail - Thankfully there were 2 very kind ladies that helped me (although maybe they wanted first dibs on what was in the boot? but hey I was thankful of the help)

So I arrived, set up and got my wares (which mainly included clothes and baby bits) displayed and ready for purchase. Don't worry about trying to get everything looking perfect straight away, just get everything out and make sure that people can see the best bits. Once the initial crowd dies down you will then have chance to make things look a bit tidier.

Even though officially the booty doesn't open until 12pm, by 11.45am I had probably sold over half of it all. I went knowing that just because my beloved White Stuff dress that cost me £70 could easily fetch £15 on a selling site… at a car boot I would be lucky to get £4 (I did, but was a heck of a haggle!). Everyone will have a different plan or reason for selling at the car boot. In my case I didn't want to be taking home lots of bits, I just wanted it gone and thankfully I only ended taking back about 20 pieces of clothing, which I thought - as I'd taken around 200 to sell - was pretty impressive.

I sold a buggy in my first 5 minutes and again, I took it prepared to let it go for a lower price than posting online.

Selling on eBay and Facebook can be time consuming - taking photos, creating listings and liaising with sellers. At the car boot it's all done in half a day and - whilst you're likely to make less dosh - it's a good way of selling on lots of stuff in just a few hours, freeing up much-needed space and making a few quid in the process. Plus there's ice cream.

Now down to the check list:

- Arrive at 9.30am/10am if you can. I think this way you will stand the best chance of being able to set up before it gets busier.

- Take food and drink. If, like me, you went by yourself you can't just run off to get yourself a lovely smelling bacon bap (although the hubby and the kids did come after lunch and got me an ice-cream, yay!)

- Take layers of clothing. It is quite an open field, In the sun it was beautiful but when the wind was whipping around you certainly knew about it. I managed to sun burn my noggin'!

- Take a float. At first I wasn't able to offer people change as I didn't think to take any extra money with me.

- If you don't have a flat-loading boot, take a chair. Thankfully I do have a comfy boot, but many that didn't had taken chairs for quieter moments.

Happy Booting!

Frankie x

View Car Boot Sales in Cheltenham

Southam Car Boot