Despite seeing signs all over the store stating that everything is a dollar, I walked over to my friend and asked, “Is everything really a dollar? You’re sure?”
It was my first time at Dollar Tree and I couldn’t contain my amazement—a store where literally every item was just one dollar?! This was definitely going to be an experience I couldn’t get back home. In Hawaii, the closest thing to Dollar Tree was probably Price Busters, which closed down a couple of years ago. But even there, most items were priced well over $1.
I began walking up and down each aisle, observing the inventory while taking note of items I might actually buy (Bounty paper towels) and things I’d probably steer clear of (no-brand face wash that was made in China). Then, just after the toy aisle, right before the office supplies, I spotted them: books! Real, new, hardcover and paperback books! (A note to those who don’t know me very well: I own a Kindle and a Nook, but I can’t rid myself of my book addiction. There is nothing in the world that can replace the feel of pages between my fingers while I’m reading a good book. The same goes for magazines—I’ve never been able to get through a digital edition.)
I had to be sure the books were real and fully intact. I picked one up randomly, quickly flipping through the pages to make sure none were missing. Then I stepped back to look at the area as a whole. These books weren’t one-offs, a random bunch of unwanted reads. No; in fact, they were organized—young adult, fiction, cookbooks, etc.—and there were multiple copies of most, like you’d find in Barnes & Noble. I excitedly began picking out the ones I was going to buy. I found my friend a few aisles down and requested price confirmation again. Holding the books up, I asked, “Are THESE a dollar?” She looked at me, slightly weary, replying, “Yes … I’m pretty sure everything is a dollar.”
Long story short, we shopped, we paid, and I confirmed: Everything at Dollar Tree does, in fact, cost a dollar. Actually, let me clarify: Most items are $1, but some are even less. There are also 2 for $1 deals, as well as some $0.89 goodies, like candy bars.
I’m still fascinated by the concept—and I’m not the only one. Several others have written about the many wonders of dollar stores, including what it’s like to live off of dollar store food, things you should and shouldn’t buy there, and how to get things for free from dollar stores by using coupons. I don’t think I’ll start doing extreme couponing or buying all of my groceries there, but I’ll definitely go back. I mean, why not? Every book I got is selling for more than $10 each on Amazon. As you can see in the photo above, $10 can go much further at Dollar Tree.