Expect designers like Donna Karan, Armani, Prada, Chanel, Michael Kors, Calvin Klein and more at prices to die for. Treks are led by Pamela Parisi and/or one of her band of personal shoppers.
Each Fabulous Shopping Excursion includes:
- Up to 3 hours of exclusive shopping led by a savvy NYC fashion guru
- The "Extra List"- a comprehensive list of sales happening within 5 days of your trek, categorized by neighborhood
- Special discounts at some stores
What Is Not Included?
- Do I have to purchase tickets in advance?
- Advance purchase is strongly recommended, as tours can sell out quickly. To maximize your chance of getting the date and time you prefer, book well in advance. You can do this online or over the phone using only Visa, Mastercard or American Express.
- What is a consignment shop?
- Consignment shops are usually for-profit establishments where consigners bring clothes and accessories to the shop for resale. When the items are sold, the money is split between the store and the consigner. These stores are very selective about the types of items they accept, so you will usually find higher quality, gently used items in the cleanest, most pristine condition.
- What is a thrift shop?
- Thrift shops are usually not-for-profit establishments run by churches or other charity organizations. Items are donated and profits go to the organization that sponsors the store. You will find all sorts of merchandise in these stores in addition to clothing, including furniture, books, toys, household items, home decor and more.
- What age is this best for?
- Shopping is ageless! We ask for shoppers's ages during the booking process, so that we can make sure the thrift and consignment shops we visit will feature clothing that is age appropriate for that day's shoppers. Young teens find great options on the Trek, as long as they are wearing junior sizes. If a shopper is younger than 13 and wears children's sizes, they should click “Contact ElegantTW” to the left of the page and speak with The Elegant Tightwad directly.
- Are infants or very small children allowed?
- Due to the fast paced nature of this Trek, bringing infants or very small children is not recommended. If you would like to bring an infant or small child on the Trek, please contact The Elegant Tightwad directly by clicking “Contact ElegantTW” to the left of the page.
- Are men welcome on this Trek?
- Men are welcome on this Trek. There are a couple of consignment and thrift shops that feature men's clothing, and we can be sure to hit those when men join the Trek. If you are the type of man who loves shopping with his significant other, you will have a great time and will probably get an item or two for yourself.
- How long is the Trek?
- The Trek is 3 hours long; however, if there are 4 or fewer shoppers, the Trek will be shortened to roughly 2 hours. Keep in mind that a shortened Trek will be complete and will feature the same stops as a regular-length Trek, it will just move at a faster pace, as there will be fewer shoppers.
- Where do we go on this Trek?
- We will go to upscale consignment and thrift shops located on Manhattan's Upper East Side - arguably the finest area for consignment and thrift shopping in the country!
- What should I wear?
- Comfortable shoes that slip on and off without laces or buckles are best. Shoppers will be trying on clothes all day, so your outfit should be something that can be taken off and on quickly and easily. A bodysuit underneath your clothing or a dress that buttons down the front or wraps are recommended.
- How much walking is involved?
- The Trek stays within a several block radius. We plan the tour to maximize shopping and minimize walking.
- Is transportation included?
- This is a walking tour. Transportation is not included. Do remember to wear comfortable shoes!
- Will there be places to stop and rest during the Trek?
- Most shoppers want to keep moving and maximize their 3 hour Trek. Often there are seats in shops, if one shopper is done before the others and wants to take a load off.
- Are bathrooms available?
- Of course! Not in the shops themselves, but we pass plenty of places to duck in on the way.
- Who will our tour guide be?
- Your leader will be either Pamela Parisi or one of her fearless personal shoppers.
- Should we tip our guide?
- Although tipping is not mandatory, a gratuity of 20% is recommended. Some factors to consider when determining the amount of a tip on a tour like this are how happy you are with your service, if the leader goes overtime and the amount of savings accumulated on your purchases.
- How much time do we spend shopping?
- All of it! We are either shopping or walking from one shop to another to shop more.
- What types of merchandise can we expect to see on this Trek?
- We will see all kinds of clothing and accessories for women, men and children in addition to furniture, books, toys, household items, home decor and more. Most of the items will be used but we do come across new things on occasion too.
- What brands will I see on this Trek?
- We will be seeing every type of clothing and accessory brand from Chanel on down. You will see Prada, Gucci, St. John, Louis Vuitton, Manolo Blahnik, Jimmy Choo, Tahari, Theory, etc. You will also see more middle of the road designers like Ann Taylor, Jones NY etc.
- What sizes will be available?
- All sizes from a US size 0 - size 22 will be available on this trek. However not every shop will carry every size and there will not be multiple sizes for a single garment. If you are size 2-12 you will find the most choices available. In general, participants in all size categories are successful at finding clothing.
- Will we be able to purchase clothes?
- Yes, of course! Shoppers will have ample opportunity to purchase clothing as that is the main objective of the Trek!
- What are the typical prices of the clothes on this Trek?
- Items will start at $5-$10 and can go up to the thousands. At the consignment shops you can find shoes from designer brands like Chanel, Prada, and Jimmy Choo for $150- $200 or designer handbags for $100 and up. The prices at the thrift shops are considerably less, and during clearance sales the prices will be even lower. There are choices on this trek for every budget & style.
- What types of payment are accepted at the locations we'll be visiting?
- The shops accept cash and major credit cards.
- What are the names of the consignment and thrift shops we will visit?
- We go to upscale consignment and thrift shops located on Manhattan's Upper East Side. Itinerary is subject to change - depending on participants and store availability - so we don't mention the locations beforehand.
- How many people are on the Trek?
- Treks accommodate up to 12 shoppers. This maximizes personal attention and shopping expertise from your leader. If more than 12 shoppers sign-up for a given day, another Trek leader is added.
- Is lunch included?
- Lunch is not included in the Trek - we're too busy shopping! If you want to grab a snack midway, there are many grocers and delis in the area.
- Is the Trek wheelchair-accessible?
- Some of the shops are accessible to individuals in a wheelchair; however, please click the 'Contact this seller' link in order to speak with The Elegant Tightwad directly regarding wheelchair accommodation, as it will require advanced planning.
- Do you offer gift certificates?
- Yes, gift certificates are available! If you would like to purchase a gift certificate, please contact The Elegant Tightwad by clicking “Contact ElegantTW” to the left of the page.
- Is it possible to arrange a private Trek?
- Of course! If you are interested in arranging a private Trek, you can contact The Elegant Tightwad by clicking “Contact ElegantTW” to the left of the page.
- Can I buy Pamela Parisi's book?
- Yes - you can buy a copy of Pamela Parisi's book, "Dress Like a Million Bucks... While Spending Only Pennies; An insider's guide to finding designer bargains at drop-dead prices in New York" at half price (normally $17.95, on sale for trek guests for $8.98) upon purchasing tickets for the trek.
- Non-refundable, can be rescheduled with 24 hours notice.
- Once purchased, tickets cannot be refunded. You may reschedule your tickets (subject to availability) only if you do so at least 24 hours in advance.
- Activity takes place rain or shine.
- The activity runs regardless of weather conditions. In the rare situation where the seller is forced to cancel the event, ticket-holders will be allowed to reschedule to another time (subject to availability).
- Participants must be ages 13 and up.
- Most of the venues that are visited on the tour are only appropriate for those ages 13 and older and carry only junior sizes and up. If you would like to bring a child who is under 13 years old or who wears children's sizes, you must get permission from the seller before purchasing tickets.
- Tour duration may be shortened.
- In the event that there are fewer than 4 participants scheduled on the tour, the duration of the tour may be shortened from 3 hours to 2 hours in length since we will need less time at each location.
Elegant Tightwad Shopping Excursions
With more than 20 years experience in the garment industry, Pamela Parisi, owner & founder, a.k.a. The Elegant Tightwad, has worked in the famous New York City Garment Center, as a showroom model, manufacturer, designer and retailer.
After being sidelined by illness for many months, Pamela turned her passion for designer clothing and bargain hunting into a new career: Shopping Excursions for fashionistas on a budget!
Author of the book, Dress Like a Million Bucks, While Spending Only Pennies, Pamela is an expert on shopping and fashion and has been called on by the likes of CNN and CBS News to comment on current trends and money saving tips.
Every stop on each Shopping Excursion is personally handpicked by Pamela, so join a fabulous Tightwad Trek and build a gorgeous wardrobe for pennies on the dollar of regular retail.
In addition to CNN & CBS, Elegant Tightwad Shopping has been featured on NBC, WBNetwork, Expose Ireland and in Elle Magazine, London Times, NY Daily News, NY Newsday, London, Sunday Express, Washington Post, Boston Globe, Miami Herald, Philadephia Inquirer, Le Figaro(FR), McCleans(CA), Bild AM Sontag(Ger), OK, MoneySense(CA) and more.
Dress Like a Diva... Shop Like a Tightwad!