Bicester Village - Is it worth the trip?

Last week I was in Oxford and couldn't resist a quick trip to Bicester Village. Although I happened to be there anyway, I do like to visit at least once a year for some bargain hunting.

This time I came back with 4 shopping bags or 6 items. I would class this as a fairly reasonable trip - I purchased things I knew I wanted, I didn't do any insane impulse purchasing but I also didn't find a lot of what I was after. This got me wondering about whether making a specific trip just to go to Bicester Village is worth it?

I think my first tip is do not travel if you are going to purchase one very specific item. For example don't head there thinking you are going to buy that pair of Valentino Rockstuds at an amazing sale price ( I always look but have only ever seen one pair of Rockstuds there). If you do have something specific in mind, it's probably worth ringing the store before you head off and if possible ask them to reserve the item for you - they won't always have a ton of stock.

Instead I head there with a very generic list, which this time said I needed some new work out gear (I wanted to check out Lulu Lemon); smart jackets, work tops and summer dresses. I was also interested in getting a new travel pass holder and some new wedge sandals. When I shop I have this list in mind, that way I know what to look out for in what can be a bit of a mish-mash of items and also prevent me from some random impulse purchase that I don't need.

On this trip I managed to get two dresses - one for work from Reiss (£65 down from £185) and one for summer from Kate Spade (£119 down from £298). I also picked up one work out outfit from Lulu Lemon. On the face of it, these kind of savings definitely make a trip worth it, on these four items alone I saved £350. But the question is whether I would have purchased these items anyway?

The answer is yes, but maybe not these specific items. I definitely needed new sports gear and some new dresses, but I wouldn't have bought either of those specific dresses at their original prices. Instead I would have picked up a work dress for around £65 from a high street store. This is where the advantage is for me, with clothes I am not particularly looking for named brands, especially with seasonal items, but I am looking for quality. If you shop well at Bicester you can get some very good quality clothing for very reasonable prices. And that to me makes the trip worth it.

With my gym gear, I have paid a lot more than £34 for leggings from other well known sports clothing companies and I genuinely believe these Lulu Lemon leggings are the best leggings I have ever owned in terms of quality. So much so I probably would pay the £68 price tag for another pair!

In addition to my generic list I always keep note of my handbag and accessories wish list. With handbags and accessories I am more interested in the brands Bicester has to offer and I keep a running list of things that I am saving up for or might be interested in purchasing one day. That way if I see one of those items at Bicester at a good price it is not quite an impulse purchase but something I know I have thought about and wanted.

For example this time I spotted the Kate Spade Wellesley Planner. I have been lusting after this planner for years and as soon as I spotted it, I knew it was coming home with me. They had quite a few others in a few different shades if this is something you've also been looking for.

I did also see a Mulberry handbag that has been on my list for some time and it was at a very good price. However, they only had the display model available and it was scuffed in a few places so I decided not to purchase it. That's another tip of mine, don't buy something with imperfections just because it's cheap - these items can still be a lot of money and you'll always notice those imperfections. At this time of year, it's always worth remembering the item and see if it pops up in their sale. I managed to get the same handbag on the Mulberry website for the same price but it was worth seeing in store before I made my purchase.

That's my two penny worth on whether I think it's worth trekking to Bicester Village once in a while. It all depends on what you're looking for and how you like to shop, but as you can see from my pictures in this post it is a lovely location so does make for a great day trip.

If you're interested in seeing what I did purchase from my trip last week then why not check out today's video on my You Tube channel:

Where do you stand on discount outlet shopping? Have you found any amazing items recently?
Speak soon x

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