Finding Affordable Designer Handbags

Finding Affordable Designer Handbags

Designer handbags are popular for many reasons — the superb quality and craftsmanship, the eye-catching appearance and the attractive and clever styles.

But sometimes it’s hard to buy a real designer bag without spending several hundred dollars, and that can be frustrating to those who are on a budget but still want a quality bag.

Fortunately, it’s much easier to get a good deal on an authentic designer handbag than it used to be.

Here are some places to check if you’re looking for a new bag:

1. Outlets: Believe it or not, many high-end designers have outlet stores. Burberry, Coach and Gucci are just a few of the many high-end brands that have their own outlets. Some of these stores sell bags made specifically for the outlets, while others stock bags that are maybe a season or two old. You can often get terrific deals at these stores, and as a bonus, you don’t have to worry about accidentally buying a fake. If you’re looking for a brand that doesn’t have its own outlet, you can also try department store outlets like Neiman Marcus Last Call and Nordstrom Rack.

2. Stores like TJ Maxx, Marshall’s and Ross Dress for Less, which sell designer goods at lower prices: It might require digging through the racks of purses, but these stores offer some of the most incredible deals on designer bags. In addition to the usual brands, these stores sometimes bring in brands that aren’t as well-known in the United States but still offer terrific styles and quality. However, you do need to inspect the bag well before buying it. While none of these stores would probably intentionally sell fake bags, accidents happen, and someone could always buy a designer bag and then return a fake and keep the real one. You should also look closely for scratches and other damage, since these bags are often handled by a lot of people before being purchased.

3. Department store sales: Some people assume that if a product is sold in a department store, it must be expensive and overpriced. That’s not necessarily true, as you can often find great sales at department stores. Most stores have a big sale at the end of each season where you can find designer bags for at least 30% off, if not more. The best way to find out about these deals is to sign up for the store’s e-mail mailing list and keep an eye out for ads in your local newspaper.

4. Designers’ Web site: If there’s a particular designer whose styles you like, keep an eye on the Web site store for sales and sign up for their mailing list. Sometimes these sites have online sample sales or put things on clearance very cheaply, and you may get a coupon code offering you a percentage off or free shipping.

5. Other Web sites that sell designer goods: While you don’t often find large reductions on designer bags online, it does happen from time to time. Sometimes it’s possible to find a coupon code that’ll be for 20% off or more. Before buying from a site, always search the Internet for coupon codes: There’s almost always one out there that will save you a few dollars.

6. Check consignment stores: If you’re OK with purchasing a used bag, you might be able to find one in a consignment store that has plenty of life left in it. Unfortunately, you’re more likely to find a fake bag in a consignment store, so inspect it closely before making a purchase.

7. Buy from eBay or another auction site: This can be tricky; there are a lot of counterfeit bags and unscrupulous sellers out there. Before buying anything, make sure the seller has good feedback and accepts returns. It can be a little scary, but there are good deals to be had on auction sites, especially if you’re willing to buy a slightly used bag.

If none of these routes brings you a top-notch bag, don’t give up. Keep looking, and in the meantime, there are plenty of good-looking, affordable bags out there to tide you over until the bag of your dreams presents itself at the right price.

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