Car Boot Sales in Australia

Back in the UK, driving around here and there at the weekends, it would be almost impossible to get too far without seeing a car boot sale. Hundreds of cars parked in a field, second-hand stuff spread out on a blanket or a table, 20p to get in for visitors and about £7 for sellers turning up in cars.

I must admit when they first exploded onto the scene in, I think, the early 90’s, I got quite hooked. In fact, I set myself the goal of creating a powerful and great sounding stereo system, made entirely of separate components, all for less than 10 quid.

So my Sunday mornings would be spent wandering around fields full of cars, looking on collapsible tables for various components on my list; speakers, an amplifier, cassette player, turntable, graphic equaliser, that sort of thing.

“How much do you want for your speakers mate?”

“Three quid.”

With a sharp intake of breath, I would say “Too dear mate, would you take £1.50?”

I gave up on the idea after I’d filled my (man) shed with electrical components, all costing about £2.00, and none of them really working very well.

Since I’ve been here in Australia though, and as much driving around as I’ve done, I’ve never yet seen a car boot sale, although there are plenty of huge fields in which they could appear.

Garage sales are hugely popular here though, and I’ve seen plenty of those. A handwritten sign would be tied to a lamppost or tree somewhere, beckoning you to visit 23 Riverside Crescent, or wherever, from 6 AM onwards. Then you arrive at the house…

Garage sale (1)

And the other weekend, when we went into the city, we discovered a “suitcase rummage market” in the square.

suitcase sales (3)

suitcase sales (4)

suitcase sales (5)

suitcase sales (6)

Elizabeth was the only one to buy anything, she spent a massive $5 on, get this, an original aboriginal painting of a turtle and a seahorse.

suitcase sales (7)

suitcase sale to ElizabethIt now hangs on her bedroom wall…

original paintingThe picture is straight, it’s my photo that is wonky.

So, does Australia have car boot sales?

I would have said no, but thankfully I have Google to save me from making a fool of myself.

Car boot sales Australia

Yes, a quick search in Google for “car boot sales” and on the top of the page (Google Australia) I discovered that, apparently, the world’s biggest car boot sale takes place in the Hunter Valley in the Hunter Stadium Car Park.

That would be about 10 hours drive from my house, so I won’t be going any time soon. But for those who are interested, this boot sale is about an hour north of Sydney, close to Newcastle. It apparently boasts over 300 stalls and 10,000 visitors and it’s a fund raiser organised by Hunter Life Education.

More searching revealed that locally we have three car boot sales coming up this weekend, so they are about. Perhaps I’m not doing enough driving around? Maybe I should hunt some car boot sales down and try to put a hi-fi system together for twenty bucks?

Nah! I don’t think so.

Do you have a car boot sale near you?

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{ 8 comments… add one }
  • Sharhabil September 3, 2017, 9:33 am | Link

    Can u send the location near nsw

  • Amanda July 23, 2017, 7:44 am | Link

    There’s one in Carrara on the Gold Coast QLD every Sunday 6am – 10am 🙂

    • BobinOz July 24, 2017, 8:32 pm | Link

      Ah, I never new. Good place for it, if you can’t let what you want at the boot sale you can always go to the Carrara Markets afterwards 🙂

  • Tracy May 10, 2014, 9:49 pm | Link

    I am a president of a high school parent and citizen committee. We are holding our third car boot sale in two years. This one has over 75 stalls already booked and the event is Sunday 18 May. 10-2 at our local high school. This event is organised and run voluntarily by the ladies of the committee with students and teachers helping on the day with BBQ, stalls and cake stalls. All proceeds go to the school. Stalls are $15 each. If you or anyone reading this is looking for a bargain, come along next Sunday to Calwell high school. Casey cres/were street, Calwell. ACT 2905 Canberra.

    • BobinOz May 11, 2014, 9:38 pm | Link

      It’s a bit far for me to come Tracy being about a 30 hour round trip drive, so I think I’ll pass 🙂

      Hope you have a bumper day though, cheers, Bob

  • John May 31, 2013, 1:58 pm | Link

    Do you remember where those car boots local to you are Bob? My google ninja skills are obviously not as good as yours. Or maybe they just don’t run anymore.

    We are a bit further north on the Sunny coast and I would be happy to head down and grab a stall at a decent car boot.
    Unlike yourself I am not looking to buy anything, no – not more stuff, please!
    This is a one off shot at finding an appreciative home for all the bits and Bobs we just don’t have a place for (see what I did there?).

    When we finally received all our furniture to our new oz home, even though we had done months of clearing out before everything was packed we have still ended up with boxes of things that have to go. All the kind of things that I reckon would fit right in at a car booty.

    If anyone can recommend a good place not too far from the Sunshine Coast then please let me know.
    aah, too easy.

    • BobinOz May 31, 2013, 8:53 pm | Link

      I still haven’t been to one here John, and I’ve certainly not heard of a big one in this area. I think the thing to do here is to have a garage sale, put everything you want to get rid of in front of your garage and stick loads of signs up on trees and lampposts with your phone number and address.

      “Garage sale, Saturday, address and phone number blah blah”

      Come Saturday morning, at around 6 AM, your will have local folk knocking on your door looking for bargains 🙂

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