REI Used Gear Review

REI members wait for that blessed event every spring. The REI Garage Sale! Don’t lie, you have waited in a line outside of REI in the early morning, possibly in the rain, to sift through REI’s return bins with a hundred other people hoping to find that one thing you’d rather not pay a couple hundred dollars for. Well, I definitely have.

This is how I bought my two pairs of Asolo hiking boots for $60 each instead of $300 each. What if I told you that you can shop the Garage Sale on any day of the year? Well, YOU CAN.

My new boots from REI’s Used Gear site!

REI has followed Patagonia and other outdoor retailers by selling their good condition used merchandise! So, when I started contemplating replacing my 5+ year old light Vasque Taku hikers the millennial in me whispered “REI Used Gear, do it”.

I perused the used gear site which has wearables (clothing, shoes) for men, women and kids, and “gear”. I chose “women’s” and then “footwear”. I filtered my search by “hiking, work, and winter boots” and my size, which is 11. It can be difficult at times to find shoes above size 10, but REI has a great selection in their regular merchandise and they had a surprisingly good selection on the used gear site.

I chose to purchase a pair of Oboz Sawtooth Mid BDry hikers. The prices reflect the condition of the item. The ones I selected were $75, originally $150, and rated as “Excellent Condition”, the highest rating. For comparison, a “Used, moderately worn, moderate dust on garment and minor scratches on toe box” item cost $60. Despite not getting a photo of the actual item, based on the item I received, the descriptions are very accurate.

The order-placing is completely different from REI’s main site or outlet. You don’t access your profile or membership, and thus you don’t get points for the purchase on your membership. Also different, even for members, is that you have to pay the shipping cost, which is $7.50 for the first item and $3.50 for every item thereafter (at least for shoes, not sure about heavier gear). I wasn’t happy about this, but in the end I still saved around $70+ compared to a new pair of boots.

I placed my order on Sunday, and received it on Wednesday from USPS. It would have been Tuesday, but we got a lot of snow. Needless to say, shipping was quick! The first thing I noticed was that you don’t get the shoebox with it, which wasn’t a problem for me.

This is the package I received.

As I unwrapped the boots, I was impressed with the pair I received. They looked nearly brand new. There were hardly any signs of wear. Maybe the previous owner wore them to walk their neighborhood, and that’s it.

The boots were wrapped in this plastic.
New boots!
From the side.
The soles.

The shoes were definitely in excellent condition. Unfortunately, they don’t fit quite right so I will be returning them.

On the shipping manifest, they give directions on how to return merchandise. You cannot take it to an REI store, it must be done online. They give a 30-day return period, which is great! They direct you to a site where you can print out a return manifest, but you are required to purchase your own shipping to return the item.

Despite these particular boots not working out for me size wise, I will definitely use the REI Used Gear site again and would recommend it.

***This review was not sponsored. These are my own opinions based on my own experience.

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