Woman blasts 'absolutely disgraceful' trend in Aussie op-shops

'For $250, this tea set better be from Buckingham palace,' Nicole told one shop assistant.

A mum of six and op-shop fanatic has blasted the secondhand outlets for hiking up their prices during an intense cost-of-living crisis.

The woman from Victoria's Mornington Peninsula, Nicole Preece, shared just how disheartening it is that so many people go into an op-shop and are unable to afford anything at the moment.

"Op-shops are meant to be about helping the community", she said in a TikTok video.

"It's now got to the point that I'm walking into op-shops, and I can't afford it. It's an absolute disgrace."

Two images. Left is of Nicole holding a pink and blue garment to see it's tag. Right is a close up of Nicole, hair up and black and beige jumper collar.
Nicole asked a shop assistant if one of their dinnerware sets was from Buckingham Palace after seeing the price. Source: Supplied

Nicole says she has been donating to, and buying from op-shops since she was a child. With increases in the cost of living, Nicole believes people need op-shops more than ever. "They should be a place where people can go to buy affordable clothing and where people can support a cause or charity" she said.

Recently, on three seperate occasions, Nicole found overpriced items that left her in complete dismay. One item, a dinnerware set priced at $250, had Nicole asking a staff member "are my eyes deceiving me, is this tea set from Buckingham Palace?"

Reactions to price hikes have been scathing

People in the comments were as disgraced as Nicole, bringing many more examples of high op-shop prices. "I saw a long tulle skirt. It was badly shredded at the back and stained and was $50" said one person, and another replied, "a guy wanted to buy a towel — it was $8 but at Kmart they are $2.50 new".

More examples flowed in from angry shoppers. "I found a secondhand phone case and I thought it said $8. No, it was $80 — I was like nope!!" exclaimed one.

"Today I saw a beaten up dinner set for $80 at my local op-shop" replied another.

Stories of overpriced op-shop finds have been going viral across Australia

In March, a Vinnies shop in Sydney's inner-west was under fire after a customer spotted a designer T-shirt for $350 (though was later priced at $100 after it was found to be a misprint) and in July, another Vinnies experienced the same backlash after it was discovered selling an item of used clothing for $75.

In Queensland in April, another op-shop had people talking for the wrong reasons over a pair of shoes for sale with a price tag of $500.

Do you have a cost-of-living story? Contact reporter Laura Koefoed at laura.koefoed@yahooinc.com

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