7 ways to shop for a bargain in and around Melbourne
One of the best things about retirement is having more time to pursue your dreams.
The challenge lies in having the funds to fulfil those dreams!
That’s why we’ve put together a bargain shopper’s guide to Melbourne.
The more you save on your living costs, the more you have to spend on boosting your lifestyle.
So read on for seven of the best inner city and outer Melbourne discount offerings, guaranteed to save those dollars and cents.
1. Melbourne factory outlets
Massive, one-stop factory outlets are scattered around Melbourne, offering known and quality brands at rock-bottom prices.
Here you can find scores of retail outlets under one roof, all keen to sell you a bargain.
Melbourne’s largest collection of shopping outlets is Direct Factory Outlets (DFO), with three bases in Moorabbin, Essendon and South Wharf. Here you can find an enormous selection of top Australian brands in one place, at bargain-basement cost.
2. Discount shopping tours
Why not take a tour around Melbourne’s best discount factory and warehouse outlets, including some which don’t usually open to the public?
Join a regular tour or get together your own group for a customised one.
Offered by a range of operators, these group tours have become part of Melbourne’s shopping landscape. Some even pay commission to your nominated charity for every dollar spent.
3. Inner city shopping strips
If you want to mix your discount shopping with a taste of alternative culture, there’s nowhere better than Richmond, Collingwood and Brunswick to do it.
Four funky inner city streets offer a fascinating mix of discount stores, warehouses and clearance centres along with arty shops, vintage culture and delicious foodie cafés.
Bridge Road, Richmond, is a renowned discount shopping strip selling shoes, clothing and accessories, along with Smith Street in Collingwood where you can pick up sporty, outdoor and leisure gear for a song.
Not forgetting Brunswick’s two famous discount strips – Sydney Road and Lygon Street – where delectable, multicultural eating places blend with factory and clearance stores selling fashion, fabrics, shoes and accessories of all descriptions.
4. Op shops
Who can go past a classic op shop for the pick of clothing, jewellery, book and household bargains?
Opportunity shops (op shops) are exactly that, shops full of opportunity!
Melbourne is lucky enough to boast three of the best in pre-loved charity stores – Vinnies (St Vincent de Paul), Salvos (Salvation Army) and Brotherhood (Brotherhood of St Laurence) shops which can be found all over Melbourne’s inner and outer suburbs.
Click on the links above to find a store near you. The staff are friendly, the cause is good and you never know what gems you might find for the merest snip.
5. Great markets
Melbourne is renowned for its street markets, including Queen Victoria, South Melbourne, Prahran, Camberwell and Coburg.
Then there's Dandenong Market, the city’s second oldest market bringing 150 nationalities together in one place.
Operating Tuesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, the market – founded in 1866 – offers great bargains in fresh produce, flowers, fashion, books and accessories, with street food and live music to keep things interesting.
The enormous Caribbean Park market operates Wednesday, Friday and Sunday from its Scoresby site, with around 1,200 stalls undercover and 150 in the open air.
6. Grocery clearance centres
There’s nothing like a clearance centre to grab the ultimate foodie bargains.
Bargain Depot is one of the largest branded clearance outlets of this kind in Victoria, offering a wide range of known grocery brands at discount prices including cleaning, health and beauty items, confectionery and party supplies.
With outlets in Cranbourne, Brunswick and Epping, you can snag a bargain of up to 70% off standard supermarket prices.
7. Mornington Peninsula treats
The Mornington Peninsula isn’t all gourmet and fine art. Tyabb is a destination hub for vintage bargains, affordable antiques and value homewares.
Browse two acres of vintage stalls at Australia’s biggest antique centre – Tyabb Packing House. Open Thursday to Sunday, the centre houses more than 30 dealers and a wealth of Victorian-era bargains in jewellery, fashion, furniture and homewares.
The Peninsula offers a variety of markets at Red Hill, Mornington Racecourse, Mornington Main Street, Balnarring Racecourse, Boneo, Sorrento, Rye, Bittern, Hastings and Crib Point.
So you’ll never be stuck for a great deal now you know where to shop for a bargain. Good luck on the hunt!