How to Make the Best Out of Half Price Day
The following article is based entirely on the author’s experience. Tactics mentioned may or may not work for readers.
As most of you guys know, the third day of every month will be the Half Price Day (We’ll call it HPD from now on). It is the day where the prices of items from the Neopian shops are slashed by half (except player owned shops and special stalls like the Hidden Tower, Smuggler’s Cove). For those of you who have trouble making the best out of it, this article will hopefully help you restock better in that rather chaotic day. For experienced restockers, you might discover another side of restocking you thought you knew.
It's a big world out there, and planning is absolutely mandatory if you don't want to lose out to other Neopians. As the saying goes - If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. The same logic applies here.
First of all, you will need to have an idea of which shops sell items that are easier to restock. For beginners, I suggest the Collectable Card shop, Fine Furniture, Slushie Shop and the Chocolate Factory. After getting the hang of it, you may proceed to venture off to other shops and see which ones are the best. Some shops' stock is comprised mainly of rarer items, such as the Coin Shop, while other shops' stock is comprised mainly of less rare items, an example being the Slushie Shop. Those shops which stock rarer items are, of course, harder to restock at. It could take quite a while to get an item but the payoff is usually very great. Likewise, shops that stock less rare items are easy to restock. But the payoff is much less. I recommend beginners to focus more on those shops with less rare items due to the lower competition and abundance of items. Once experienced, they can move on to other shops and find out for themselves which shops are the best.
Also, it is best to visit the shop a few days before HPD to familiarize yourself with the shop and the items. Also, take note of the prices of some items. I’m not saying you will need to jot down the exact price of a particular item. You will just need to know how much it approximately costs. It will come in handy on that day.
The art of speed purchasing
The worst part of the experience isn’t getting into an empty shop, but rather having to see a picture of your pet being sad and a big note “FIRE DRAIK MORPHING POTION IS SOLD OUT!!!”. Okay, I’m exaggerating there a little, but you get the point. Balancing the neopoints spent and the time buying the item is vital. Also, you would not want to pay more than what the item is actually worth. So I suggest that you have two browsers ready. One for the restocking and one stationed at the Shop Wizard.
The first step of it all is to select an item. It might seem simple, but it is really crucial. You do not want to waste too much time dwelling on which item to buy. Here are some tips for you.
1. Look at the amount of stock of the item. Rare items tend to be sold at a higher price than of in that shop.
2. Look at the price of the item. Rare items are usually more expensive compared to the others.
3. Look at the item itself. Just get a feel of whether the item could be sought after by fellow Neopians.
After selecting an item, you will need to check the current price of it. That is what the Shop Wizard is for. While the Shop Wizard loads, always haggle first. If it's a good deal, you have already lowered the price, in a shorter time too, thus increasing your profit. If it's a bad deal, just find another item since there's no harm done.
And here are some tips for the checking and haggling part.
1. Try to copy and paste the name of the item. If not, type only part of it out and use “containing my phrase” option. This will speed up searches by quite a lot.
2. Try to estimate how fast the items are sold. If items are sold at a slower pace, try to haggle off more neopoints.
3. There is a limit to how much you can haggle off an item; once you reach that limit, do not try to haggle more. It won’t go any lower.
The big day
Remember the planning you did? This is where all the theory turns into practice. The most suitable time for restocking is at around 3 a.m. NST. During this time, wander between shops that you have selected (which, I have mentioned, should be the ones that stock more frequently).
Remember the prices I told you to look out for? This is the time to put into use. You will realize that not ALL items’ price are reduced. If you noticed a particular item’s cost is reduced, go for that one. If the cost of an item remains unchanged, stay away from it.
After a successful purchase, or after some time, have a check on shops that are stocked less, and yields bigger profit items. These shops include:
The Magic Shop – Famous for their Morphing Potions which yield high profits.
The Bookshop – Who doesn’t like books? :D
The Post Office – Stamps are highly sought after by Neopians.
The Petpet Shop – Petpets are cuuuuuuuuuuute!
The Pharmacy – Sick pets needs treatment!
The following reasons are why you should focus more on smaller profits rather than bigger ones
1. As I have mentioned, bigger profits means smaller chances of purchasing the items. These shops are so popular; items are snagged up in a matter of seconds. I would rather secure myself with smaller profits and use the luck of random checks for bigger profits.
2. Fewer people visit the lesser profit shops. This way, you can haggle more to get a better deal or buy more of an item.
After wandering for some time, maybe it's time to “retreat”, and stay at one spot. That is basically what camping means. For me, I find the Collectable Card shop and the Chocolate Factory both great camping spots.
The Collectable Card shop is a great spot as you can see the rarity just by looking at the colour. Blue and red are the common ones. They usually aren’t worth much. Green are the rarer ones while purple and pink would probably yield great profits. For most of the time, I bought the card without checking its price, and I still got a great deal.
As for the Chocolate Factory, there is not much you need to do because almost everything yields profit on HPD. Remember the tips to selecting items. It is extremely useful here.
So there you have it. Don’t fret if you made a loss on your first try. With experience, the next attempt will always be better.