10 tips for Car Boot Sales

A reader recently wrote in requesting advice on running a car boot sale as a fundraiser. Here goes!

1. Make certain you have relevant permits – check with your council if the car boot sale won’t be held on your own grounds.

2. Charge a fixed amount per car and let your families make all of their own money from their sales. $20 per car is a good amount. You might also want to ask for a gold coin donation for the shoppers to enter on the day, as long as you have identifiable entry points (or you may just want to hit them all up for raffle tickets).

3. Safety first – Make certain you have thought of an organised way to safely get all the cars lined up in their appropriate spaces. A lot of kids get excited at events like these so there is an extra duty to be safe. One idea is to have ‘car parking 7-7.30, set up 7.30-8.

4. Coffee. You must have coffee. You can book a coffee van that should give you a percentage of sales (often 50c per cup) without having to do any of the hard work yourselves.

5. A cupcake/ cake stand is a good idea. You might as well take advantage of your captive audience!

6. A bouncy castle and face painting are always a good idea.

7. Sponsorship is the thing that differentiates the best from the rest in fundraising. Get your sponsorship team onto getting a naming-rights sponsor for the castle (a real estate agent perhaps?) and then let the kids have a jump for a gold coin. A naming-rights sponsor for the event can also be a valuable opportunity for a local business (orthodontist? pharmacy? shopping centre?) to get their name in lights.

8. Invite local party-plan businesses to purchase a stall – you may ask for an item to be donated for a raffle also.

9. Did I mention that a raffle is a good idea? Send someone around selling tickets to the newly cashed-up car boot sellers!

10. Promote the car boot sale around other local organsiations like churches and kindergartens/ schools. Everyone loves a bargain. You can also (if you have ample space and want to make it huge) invite those organisations to piggyback on your fundraiser and sell spots – they keep half, you keep half.

Happy Fundraising!
Mandy Weidmann

Originally published 28 March, 2018

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