This blog post was updated on April 19, 2021.

Not having enough money to purchase the right gear can held us back from taking part in amazing adventures. Thanks to today’s culture of crowdsourcing and second-hand markets, finding the right gear at affordable prices is no longer an issue. These are just a few ways to get serious gear for your trips without breaking the bank!

Buying Off-Season or Second-Hand Goods

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From smartphones to hiking boots, a great way to save money on travel gear is to purchase last year’s model. Keep your eye out online on discount retailers like Backcountry and Sierra Trading Post, whose clearance bin deals usually have something for your needs. Secondhand stores can also be a good place to find travel apparel or camping goods. I’ve found everything from luggage to climbing gear for up to 75% off by waiting for end-of-season clearance sales or purchasing from reputable second-hand shops. Check out sites like Geartrade, which provides a place to search used travel and outdoor gear, and even trade your old stuff with others. Don’t forget to also check out good deals on community bulletin board (like Craigslist) and “garage sale” sites for reasonably priced items.

Renting Gear

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Another affordable option is to rent travel gear. One of the benefits of renting gear at your destination is that you don’t have to transport heavy or bulky equipment (bikes, canoes, golf clubs, etc.). This can be very useful when traveling abroad. Not only is it more affordable than buying the gear new, it also saves a bundle on potential baggage costs to transport all of that gear on the airplane. All you have to do is browse sites like Ayoopa for some great gear at reasonable rental rates.

You may also like: 10 Ways to Make Money While Traveling

Crowdsourcing Locally and Globally

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The rise of crowdsourcing (especially in the context of travel) has made everything, from finding accommodations to booking reservations at the hottest restaurant in town, way easier. As this involves everyone getting ideas, advice, and suggestions from friends and experts alike, it opens up a load of options in finding travel gear at home or abroad. There are numerous ways to go about crowdsourcing. One tried and true methods is to simply put out a call on social media to see if your friends have any of the things you need for an upcoming trip (skis, travel backpacks, etc.). More often than not, someone who is willing to let you use their gear for free. Another way to find gear is to join an online message board or social media group dedicated to travel and inquire about where to borrow or rent travel gear, either before booking your cheap round trip flights or once you get to your destination.

Do you have other ideas for finding affordable travel gear? We’re all ears. Let us know in the comments section.

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About The Author

An insatiable foodie, art collector, and international literature aficionado, I have traveled throughout Europe, Asia, the U.S. and Canada. For the past fifteen years, I have written about my adventures for various travel and literary publications. I am the owner of Lucidité Writing (www.luciditewriting.com) and Bouchard Design Co.