Discount Camping Equipment: How and Where to Find It

Is discount equipment a good buy?

For the frugal camper, there is almost nothing more satisfying than finding deep discount camping equipment. Camping is a rewarding, albeit expensive, hobby but finding discounted camping gear can keep the adventure within budget.

Why Is It So Cheap?

The main reason some people don't buy deep discount camping equipment is that they are concerned that there may be something wrong with the equipment. While in most cases this is not true, it does make sense to inspect any purchase carefully for flaws.

So, why is it so cheap? Here are a few reasons the equipment may be at rock bottom prices:

  • It is being discontinued
  • It is last season's or last years merchandise
  • It is a special purchase by the store for a promotion
  • It is slightly flawed, also known as a "second"
  • It was returned merchandise

Always Inspect Your Gear

Whether you are buying your equipment deeply discounted or not, it still pays to check it over carefully. Often, discounted and sale merchandise cannot be returned, so take the time to look it over in the store if possible.Things to check are:

  • Zippers
  • Seams
  • Materials
  • Make sure all parts are included and intact

When you are buying seconds from an outlet you will have to decide what you will and will not accept. Sometimes items are sent to outlets because the color is off or the dye streaked. Other times, there may be uneven seams or an appliqué missing. Normally, items that go to outlets are not missing parts or made in such a way that they can't be used; they are merely not perfect.

Where to Find Deep Discount Camping Equipment

There are numerous places to find camping equipment that has been deeply discounted. More and more companies are opening outlet stores around the country. You may have an outlet mall close to you. These stores are opened by manufacturing companies to sell items that are slightly irregular, imperfect, or haven't sold in other venues. Often you can find merchandise that has been discounted as much as 75 percent or more.

Some online venues for heavily discounted camping equipment are:

Extra Savings with Coupon Codes

Online coupon codes can often bag you extra savings. Usually there is just a series of letters, words, or numbers that you type in on the site. Coupon codes change pretty often so you will want to check regularly to see if there are new codes available. Always read the conditions of the code carefully to make sure that you do everything required to use it. A quick Google search on "Coupon Codes" and then the name of your company should reveal a number of possibilities. An example search would be, "coupon codes REI". You can also try the following sites for coupons that you can use online:

Best Times to Shop for Camping Equipment

For the best discounts, try to shop during a change of season. Even camping equipment retailers and companies stock and sell items according to seasons. Knowing when to shop can get you extra discounts on the items you are looking for. Good times to find extra discounts are:

  • Day after Thanksgiving if you can stand the crowds
  • Last minute Christmas season
  • January (Anyone for winter camping?)
  • August

When you are just beginning to camp, buying all the equipment necessary can become expensive very quickly. By using coupon codes, deep discounts, and secondhand stores wisely, you can get the equipment you need at a price that won't break your budget.

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Discount Camping Equipment: How and Where to Find It