Visiting flea markets for “bargain hunting” becomes a trend for Danes.
By Ruta Cinkaite
Do you see second hand markets or “flea markets” as a sign of poverty or lack of money? Some people might. But if you end up dwelling on the streets of Denmark, which is one of the wealthiest countries in the world – overtaking Germany and Canada, among many others – you might get surprised.
Flea markets seem to have become part of the culture of Danes, as smaller or bigger loppemarked take place in Aarhus almost every weekend. And they are packed. As soon as the first spring flowers start blooming, Danes get to the streets to enjoy the weather and also have some “bargain hunting” fun. Saturday and Sunday mornings can be devoted for both,- trying getting rid of old stuff, that has retired morally or vice versa,- find a real treasure for 10% or even less of it’s real price.
But long story short, why do rich and wealthy Danes do that? Taus and his wife Fatous, who participate in loppemarked every year, said that shopping in flea markets is part of a current cultural trend. “Some people just come to check if they can find a good deal”, smiles Fatous. “Others come while following this trend of having something old, antique at home”, she adds. “You may have a beautiful new house, but having something old and kitsch at home is like a cherry on the top of the cake. You would probably find something like that in almost every house now in Denmark. New with a touch of old has become a trend”.
Meanwhile, if you are considering selling some stuff, get ready to pay between 150kr. – 300 kr. per day for a spot or table in a market. There are no main restrictions on what can be sold in the markets. One can find or bring here almost everything, from shoes and clothing to furniture and old vinyl records, dating back to 1960’s. And with a closer look, you might even find some road signs or even old pictures.
Well, then maybe second hand markets could become a money source? “Not really”, smiles Taus. “On a good day you can sell stuff for, let´s say, 1000 kr. Of course it depends on what you have and how much of it, but it rarely crosses more then that. After this you would have to minus the price of the table, and what you are left with is around 700 kr, which would buy you a nice dinner at the end of the day though!”. He adds that another asset about participating in these markets is to spend a nice afternoon outside, talking to people.
Therefore, if you end up in a flea market on a beautiful Sunday afternoon in Aarhus, don’t get surprised by how packed it is. Danes do it, because they love to look for treasure, as Taus points out. And as they do it often (sometimes maybe even too often!), loppemarked is a great option to clean their wardrobes and houses after winter. It is a – must try – experience though! Danes say it’s even addictive.