My Favorite Thrift Stores in San Diego

We devote thousands of hours of research to help you get Big Travel with Small Money. You support us by signing-up for credit cards through partner links which earn us a commission. Here’s our full Advertising Policy.

My Favorite Thrift Stores in San Diego

EmilyMy Favorite Thrift Stores in San DiegoMillion Mile Secrets Team

We devote thousands of hours of research to help you get Big Travel with Small Money. You support us by signing-up for credit cards through partner links which earn us a commission. Here’s our full Advertising Policy.

When I travel to a new place, I like to look up thrift stores in the area.  I regularly shop at thrift stores in my local city for super-cheap kids clothes, toys, and books.  And sometimes I find some great clothes for me, too!  I LOVE that I am saving money, and at the same time getting unique finds that you can’t find anywhere else.

Regularly priced kids clothes can easily cost ~$10-30 for ONE outfit.  I usually pay between $2-4 for one outfit at a thrift store, which makes me and my wallet so happy!  Plus, kids grow so fast, and to me, it doesn’t make sense to buy anything new for them.  The money saved on clothes & toys allows me to spend more money on the more expensive things like a good quality travel stroller or 2nd carseat.

Shopping at Thrift Stores Saves Me Hundreds of Dollars

My Top 3 San Diego Thrift Stores

I flew out to San Diego for a family vacation, but also to visit my good friend, Miori, who used to live in the city.  We timed our vacations together so that we could hang out.  We love thrifting together, so she took me to her favorite places in San Diego.

1.   Team Amvets Thrift Store

This place is HUGE.  You’ll find everything here, including a large selection of decent quality Halloween costumes, tons of accessories (even brand new hair extensions!), and like-new size 19 Adidas shelltoes.  Part of the fun of thrifting is finding crazy stuff you’d never see anywhere else!  I scored big at this shop, and got a like-new swimsuit for my daughter, never been used vintage bibs, like-new Robeez (a soft sole shoe), and lots of other stuff for super cheap!  Inside of a grab bag with lots of socks and shoes were legwarmers.

My AmVets Haul Totaled to Less Than ~$15

We used the legwarmers I got in her hotel room to help prevent rug burn on her knees.

Arya Modeling Her Thrift Store Finds

2.   Converse Family Quality Thrift

This store is located right around the corner from the Team Amvets store.  It has a much smaller selection, but there are some great vintage finds.  I found a super cute cat Cabbage Patch Kid from 1983 that was in excellent condition, for just ~$5!  And I got a BRAND NEW wooden alphabet and numbers learning toy for my daughter for the same price.

Quality Thrift Is the Smallest, but You Can Still Find Some Good Stuff

Some of the clothes are very cheap here–skirts were just $1 each!

There Are Lots of Clothes

Arya loved new new alphabet toy!

Arya Loved Her New Toy From Converse Family

3.   Veteran’s Thrift Store

This shop is located right next to Converse Family Quality Thrift.  All 3 shops are located right near each other, which makes going to them extremely convenient!

Veterans Thrift Is Large and Has a Great Selection

This is another thrift store that’s huge and has a decent selection of clothes, shoes, toys, and housewares.

There’s Something for Everyone at This Store

Some of my favorite finds from this shop included a vintage sailor tank top, and a chic black T-shirt.  I also found a vintage Berenstain Bears wall hanging and a crushed velvet Cynthia Rowley shift dress for me!

These Super Cute Outfits Cost ~$3 Each!!

Bottom Line

Shopping at thrift stores for clothes, toys, and books for my daughter saves me hundreds of dollars.  Kids grow so quickly, so why waste ~$10 to $30 on brand new outfits when I can pay ~$2 to $4 at a local thrift store, for even cuter clothes?  When I travel, I like to seek out the thrift stores for unique finds.  Do you shop at thrift stores?  Where are your favorite ones?  Let us know in the comments below!

If you liked this post, why don’t you join the 25,000+ readers who have signed-up to receive free blog posts via email (only 1 email per day!) or in an RSS reader …because then you’ll never miss another update!

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred® named a 'Best Travel Credit Card' by MONEY® Magazine, 2016-2017
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel
  • No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards

More Info

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

Add comment

E-mail is already registered on the site. Please use the Login form or enter another.

You entered an incorrect username or password

Sorry that something went wrong, repeat again!

10comments

by Newest
by Best by Newest by Oldest

I’m loving this! Added them to my San Diego bookmarks & map. Right along with the vegan restaurants from the Happy Cow app. Team Amvets has another branch right downtown, per Google Maps. The Southwest sale, including San Diego, ends tonight or tomorrow, but there will be another! Many thanks, Emily 🙂

Author

Check out Plumeria Vegetarian Restaurant when you are out there as well. I LOVED this place! Have a great time, and let me know if you found any gems thrifting (or have any new stores to add!).

Thanks, the menu looks enticing!

In Oban, Scotland there are 3 thrift stores on the west side of the same block, George Street just north of the (plaza?), and another across the street. All tiny “charity shops” typical of the U.K., however I had great luck with pants & scarves & kids books & Ordinance Survey maps! When I go to a new city the first day is spent wandering around getting a feel for the place & the people, and I find that locals on the street & in thrift stores will point me to unadvertised places & events I may have otherwise missed.

Author

Wow, I need to plan a trip to Scotland now! That’s the fun of charity/thrift shops–you never know what (or who!) you are going to find.

I live in San Diego and hadn’t heard of these places. They’re a good 15-20 minutes from Downtown where most people stay, and you’d need a car to rental get there. Might want to mention that.

Author

That’s a good point! Thanks for mentioning it.

I like this series. I thrift occasionally at home but trying to be more minimalist! I have never thought to check out thrift stores when traveling. Very very cute finds!

Author

Thanks, Karie! I used to only thrift at home, too. Let us know if there are can’t- miss thrift stores you recommend.

What does this have to do with points, miles, or travel?

Author

Many people like saving money, and San Diego is a popular travel destination! 🙂