With the large number of shopping malls found all over this tropical island, it’s no wonder that Singapore is known as a shopper’s paradise. Just take a stroll down Orchard Road and you’ll be left confused as to which mall to head into first. If you’ve lived in this place for a while, you’ll know what we mean.
However, not all good things come with an expensive price tag. There are so many things in Singapore that are both cheap, good and meaningful.
5 Thrift Stores to Shop on a Budget
Fortunately for the budget shopper, there are thrift stores in Singapore if you need some affordable retail therapy. While thrifting can sometimes yield unfruitful results, finding a good quality item after rummaging through piles and piles of goods is the most satisfying feeling ever.
If you need retail options for a more wallet-friendly shopping trip, check out our guide to the local thrift stores in Singapore:
New2U Thrift Shop
Founded in May 2000 by the Singapore Council of Women’s Organisation (SCWO), the New2U Thrift Shop is the place to be for the best bargains. It sells a variety of pre-loved items, from clothes to homeware to books, with prices starting from only $1. The shop runs a couple of special promotions too — a weekly half-price discount for students and a monthly half-price discount for the general public on the last two working days of each month. Both promotions apply to all items sold in the shop except for books, toys, watches and jewellery, as well as items with “no discount” tags. And the best part about shopping at New2U? You will be doing your part for those in need too because the store’s proceeds contribute towards Star Shelter, a charity by SCWO that offers women and children who have fallen victim to family violence a temporary shelter. Affordable shopping plus helping the needy? It doesn’t get any better than that.
While thrifting for clothes means finding the most affordable deals, the quality and style of clothes you get from thrift stores can sometimes be underwhelming. Fortunately, REFASH is here to save us all budget fashionistas from having to break our banks on expensive clothes for the sake of style. Launched in 2016, REFASH allows customers to sell their pre-loved goods either on its online site or in their brick-and-mortar store. How it works: bring your second-hand items to any REFASH outlet, the REFASH team will provide you with a price quotation for your items, and if you accept their quote, you will either be paid within a month or receive in-store credit. However, if you reject their quote, your items will be under consignment sale at one of the REFASH outlets. The range of items sold on REFASH includes clothes, bags and watches from a wide variety of local and international brands including Love, Bonito, Zalora, Topshop, H&M, and Dorothy Perkins.
Do you know that moment when you pull out a fabulous piece of clothing item after sifting through piles and racks of pre-loved clothes, and finding out that it is a vintage Oscar de la Renta or a Stella McCartney from a few seasons past? Feels like you found hidden treasure, doesn’t it? Well, when you shop at Style Tribute, that moment will just be one of many. Style Tribute is an online marketplace that allows you to shop for pre-owned items from luxury brands. It works similarly to REFASH as well, whereby you get to sell your items on Style Tribute’s online store. From clothes to footwear to bags from luxury designers such as Louis Vuitton, Miu Miu, Kenzo and Saint Laurent, your cravings for designer-made goods will definitely be satisfied at Style Tribute.
The Salvation Army has a number of thrift store outlets around the island, the largest being the Praisehaven Mega Family Store. With a myriad of items available, you’ll no doubt be spoilt for choice during your browse through the store. Looking for affordable furniture to furnish your cosy space? Check out the store’s stock of high-quality wood furniture. If you’re a bookworm, the Praisehaven outlet offers a large collection of books for all ages. For all you active types, look out for the store’s range of sporting items, from golf clubs to rackets. Musical instruments can be extremely expensive when you buy them first-hand, so why not drop by the Praisehaven outlet and get yourself an instrument at a much more affordable price? It sells guitars, pianos, even accessories such as music stands. The Salvation Army provides a ten per cent discount to its members on most items (except for books), so if you thrift often, signing up for membership might be a good idea.
MINDS, which stands for Movement for the Intellectually Disabled of Singapore, has a total of four thrift shop outlets all over Singapore. The MINDS shop serves to empower the intellectually disabled community by offering them the opportunity to gain skills in the retail industry such as store management. In addition, they are able to learn customer service skills through their interaction with customers who visit the shop. In turn, customers can gain a further understanding of the challenges the intellectually disabled community faces on a daily basis. The products sold in the MINDS shop range from clothes to homeware to furniture. The shop even offers an option to customise their regular range of products if you’re looking to gift their items for a special occasion.