When is the Best Time to Shop at Thrift Stores?


When is the Best Time to Shop at Thrift Stores?

Here at Goodwill, we get this question all the time. And really, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer. The best time to shop at thrift stores is, naturally, when a huge new shipment of amazing merchandise arrives. (And is set out for the public.) Unfortunately, there’s no exact time or date for this to happen, so you’ll have to get creative to find the best bargains. The good news is that the savvy sale-shoppers in Phoenix have found a few tricks to scouting top deals. Here are their recommendations for the best times to shop at thrift stores:

The Perfect Day

While there’s no “perfect” day to shop second hand stores, many regulars swear by shopping early on Monday and Tuesday. Homeowners tend to drop off garage sale leftovers on Sunday nights, making for new finds. Plus, the weekends are more crowded shopping days, so employees look to restock early in the week.

Shop Around Holidays

While holiday weekends tend to be busier shopping times, people also have more time to go through their closets and homes. Spring cleaning that’s been put off can easily get done on the 3-day Memorial Day weekend, which can mean more Goodwill donations later that week.

Go on Sale Days

Thrift store employees put a little extra love into stocking shelves right before a sale day. Ideally, they want shoppers to have a wide range of well-organized goods to browse first thing on discount days. This is especially true on Goodwill’s 50% off days, held every other Saturday. Head over to your favorite Goodwill store the night before to browse, then lineup first thing in the morning to get in. Also on any day, pay attention to the color tag of the day at Goodwill—displayed in the front of the store and regularly announced over the loudspeaker. Any item with that color tag can be purchased for half price!!

Look for Specialty Discounts

Many thrift shops, like Goodwill, offer special discount days for seniors, students, military members, or even teachers. If you or a family member fall into one of these categories, shop smart. Ask your local thrift shop which days you can shop on for less. For example, military members and students can score 25% off on Sundays at Goodwill, while seniors get 25% off on Tuesdays. (ID required)

Visit During Spring Cleaning

The tradition of cleaning out your closets in spring is even more widespread in Phoenix, where summer temperatures make it too hot for people to host garage sales. February through April is prime yard sale time here. So, if you’re in the market for clothing or household goods, this is a great time to shop thrift stores.

No matter what time of day, week or year you shop at thrift stores, you’re bound to find something you need. With a little patience and shopping savvy, you can find bargains at any time. Click here to find your nearest Goodwill store, and view our weekly calendar for specials.

Up to 50% Off

Exciting Events this Week!

Amazing things are always happening at Goodwill of Central and Northern Arizona! Whether you are looking for a daily special or want to participate in one of our job training events, we have something for you.


*Daily deals valid at select Metro Phoenix, Prescott and Yuma locations. Please check with your neighborhood Goodwill for details.

Discount valid on used merchandise only. Not valid on food or drink, new goods, seasonal or holiday items. Not valid at Goodwill Clearance Center. Our REDESIGN by Goodwill and Clearance Outlet are excluded. REDESIGN operates separate sales and discounts from other Goodwill stores.