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Secondhand Birthday Present Challenge: The Results

If you followed my post from January about setting myself a secondhand birthday present challenge for my toddler’s birthday (May,) then you will know that I planned to scour online and local charity shops to see what I could source secondhand, and to show you that you could do the same.

Find my original post here: Secondhand Birthday Present Challenge

So, how did I do?

I was very impressed with my secondhand buys. In the first post, I stated that I wanted to particularly look out for toy car items, perhaps a garage, and a scooter. I found some toy cars, a transporter, and even extras such as unused books and a xylophone. I sourced all of these through a local charity shop and Facebook Marketplace

Here is the run down of the items I picked up secondhand and the cost:

I found the following 2 items in a charity shop. The wooden set was the most expensive second hand item I bought, but at £5 and in excellent condition, I thought it was more than worth it. The transporter with a small race car was just £1.50.

Total: £6.50

Now, the following items were a total steal. I paid £10 for a big box of toys and miscellaneous items (I only had a list of some of the toys and items, but I thought £10 was worth it just for them, so I did buy the box not knowing all of its contents. There was 34 items in that box, including items that we have put away for my eldest’s birthday, and DVDs etc. That means that on average, each item you see below cost approximately 0.29p

Total: £2.90

That is a total of £9.40 for 12 items!

For the purpose of transparency, we did buy him a scooter brand new. The country went into lockdown, so shopping second hand wasn’t an option, and we had to have a scooter delivered. We had looked at many secondhand scooters, but they were either in very poor condition or they needed us to spend money on them to make them fit for purpose. Not only was it less risk to buy new, it was actually more cost effective in this case. After all, being frugal doesn’t mean being cheap. We wanted something to last.

And as for the toy car garage that we wanted to find… well, we found a wooden fire station second hand (or should I say my toddler did). Because he had found it in the charity shop himself, we let him buy it with his own pennies for just 0.50p. I couldn’t believe the fantastic price. It is the perfect size for him to play with and fits his small cars, and it is easy to store.


I hope I have proven that if you keep your eyes peeled and regularly check online or in charity/thrift shops that you can source some lovely presents for your kids. Second hand doesn’t have to mean second best.


Please stick to the guidelines in place for social distancing while they are in place.


Content belongs to Sensibly Frugal Living


2 thoughts on “Secondhand Birthday Present Challenge: The Results

  1. I choose not to buy second hand and this is a personal choice. I personally get no enjoyment from shopping at second hand shops and garage sales, but I absolutely love Dollar stores and can usually find branded items there at a reduced price! 🙌

    Since my daughter was born, we have received so many gifts from family/friends that I haven’t had the need to go out and buy my daughter more toys. She has a ton of toys, and sometimes I donate them to her daycare when she’s done with her toys. I hope that your son has a good birthday! 🥳🍰

    Liked by 1 person

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