I worked in music retail for years – here are 6 ways to ensure you save money on your next guitar

Guitars hanging in a music store
(Image credit: Future)

If anyone is aware of how costly guitar is as a hobby, it's me. I spend my days completely submerged in the world of guitars, constantly on the lookout for my next gear-related fix. I've spent many years on both sides of the counter in guitar stores, as the employee tasked with finding your next dream axe and as an avid customer and six-string hoarder – not to mention, I now write about guitars for a living at Guitar World. So with all that in mind, I'm going to go through a few tips and tricks I've learned along the way to ensure you always save money on your guitar purchases. 

Now, before we go any further, it's important to note that margins have never been tighter in the world of music retail, with issues surrounding fuel, the cost of living, stocking problems and the lingering effects of a global pandemic causing prices to skyrocket. So, for that reason, it can be difficult to get the exact deal you were hoping for. That said, it's important to remember that it is not the folks behind the counter who set the prices, so remember to always be polite to the staff – whether in person, over the phone or by email – as they are just trying to do their job. Let's face it, if you kick-off, you are less likely to get a bargain! 

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Daryl Robertson
Senior Deals Writer

Daryl is a Senior Deals Writer at Guitar World, where he creates and maintains our 200+ buyer's guides, finds the best deals on guitar products, and tests the latest gear. His reviews have been featured in prominent publications like Total Guitar, Future Music magazine, and MusicRadar.com.

During his career, he has been lucky enough to talk to many of his musical heroes, having interviewed Slash and members of Sum 41, Foo Fighters, Feeder, Thrice, and more. In a past life, Daryl worked in music retail. For a little under a decade, he advised everyone from absolute beginners to seasoned pros on the right gear for their needs. 

Daryl is also a fully qualified sound engineer, holding a first-class Bachelor's degree in Creative Sound Production from the University of Abertay.