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Where to find poly bags

brickvinebrickvine Member Posts: 6
edited February 2013 in Collecting
Sorry if this topic has been asked and answered, but I really like picking up poly bags here and there when I'm out shopping, but the only place I find them regularly (I'm in the US) is at Target. TRU doesn't have them near me, nor does Wal Mart. Where do you all get yours? Also, I don't see them on or other websites (unless sold by individuals). Any strategies or sources out there I should know about?



  • ptericpteric Member Posts: 156
    The three you listed are the main stores, Target is great because you can find them in the toy section, in the seasonal section, and also up by the cash registers (sometimes you can find 3-4 different sets if you check all the register lanes). Besides those, I've found older sets at Wegmans grocery stores, and that discount store Five Below (also a good place to find CMFs).
  • SpicySpicy Member Posts: 25
    edited February 2013
    I'm hoping to be able to get my hands on at least one of each of all the Legends of Chima polybag sets, and saw on its set page here at Brickset that one of the polybags (#30252 Crug's Swamp Jet) has recently been released, but only in Sweden. Will stores elsewhere in the world have access to this set in the future, or are many polybags location-exclusive? I was just curious before I look to buy from sellers on eBay.
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ Member Posts: 4,179
    Spicy said:

    Will stores elsewhere in the world have access to this set in the future

    Sometimes the do sometimes they dont.
    Spicy said:

    are many polybags location-exclusive

    Yes, loads. But plenty start off location exclusive, then spread. There's no way to tell until it happens.

  • YodaliciousYodalicious Member Posts: 1,366
    In my area, the trick is to pick the TRU that's out of the way of the others. The main, highly-trafficked TRUs sell out of them the day they get them. Never seen Gandalf or the Mirkwood Elf at the big TRU near my house, which is in a highly-populated area. But there are a couple of old TRUs (the old layout of the store, never remodeled) that are in decent areas, but sort of hidden from plane view. They always seem to have surprises. Visited one last week and they had 9 Mirkwood Elves. They also had hundreds of CMFs Series 9 while the TRU closer to me never has more than 10 or 20.
  • YodaliciousYodalicious Member Posts: 1,366
    I'm doing the same with LotR/Hobbit and for some I've just had to bite the bullet and get them on eBay.
  • brickvinebrickvine Member Posts: 6
    Thanks for the responses! It sounds like I'm in for the thrill of the hunt! My Target has them by the register but I haven't seen them anywhere else. I'll keep my eyes peeled.

    It's interesting that they're not sold online through retailers. Is that because (the theory goes) that they're "left over" or extra pieces that TLG wants to get rid of? Or is the margin so low on selling those little things online that nobody does it?
  • DadsAFOLDadsAFOL Member Posts: 617
    They are "impulse buy" items, which means they want you to add it to a purchase you were already going to make. That's why they are frequently found in checkout lanes. If you live near either Legoland you will find a checkout gauntlet in the Big Shop. They have about a 20 ft. lane with polys on either side to capture the attention of kids waiting with parents for checkout (as well as candy and trinkets and other impulse stuff).

    So the reason you don't generally see these for sale online is that the retailer doesn't want you to spend ONLY $5 when you make a purchase. They want you to buy a $20-$40 set. Same reason LBR stores usually only carry holiday polys - if they had Star Wars polys, then some customers would tell their kids that "that's all we can afford today" and not buy that $20 SW set. It seems greedy, but capitalism is all about maximizing profit from every customer.
  • SpicySpicy Member Posts: 25
    Thank you so much for the info! I may have to do the same and go for eBay. :)
  • atkinsaratkinsar Member Posts: 4,258
    We try to keep the locations a polybag has been available up to date in the Brickset database using the notes field on the set details. I won't claim we're 100% accurate, but we do at least try.

    Of course this is based on factual reporting, actually predicting where the things are going to turn up next is akin to trying to predict the stock market.
  • SpicySpicy Member Posts: 25
    I'm really glad to hear that! :) I'll keep spying on the pages then!
  • JosephJoseph Member Posts: 629
    edited February 2013
    ^^ That's a good point; on occasion, I've seen locations listed in the notes a few days before it's been mentioned in the forum. I wonder who's responsible for that ;-).
  • MarkeyMarkey Member Posts: 69
    "30252 Crug's Swamp Jet" has been released in Belgium as well.
  • NeilJamNeilJam Member Posts: 272
    My TRU has built up a selection of recent polybags. They just got the Galaxy Squad Space Insectoid #30231. Also saw a bunch at a Five Below yesterday including the Uruk-Hai with Ballista #30211 and the Harry Potter Lab #30111 and Hogwarts Express #40028.
  • margotmargot Member Posts: 2,308
    You can usually order TRU polybags online. They told me that 30241, the Mandalorian Fighter would only be sold online.
  • CommanderRaabCommanderRaab Member Posts: 661
    sorry if slightly off topic, but the mirkwood elf and gandalf were mentioned earlier. Does anyone know where we can get these in the UK? Or are they still available at TRU in the US? I tried to buy some the other day but they showed as not available for shipping only store pickup. I was. hoping to ship to a friend over there.
  • tmgm528tmgm528 Member Posts: 457
    edited February 2013
    They are still at the TRU near me but I am in the US Of A.
  • CommanderRaabCommanderRaab Member Posts: 661
    You arent in Texas anywhere by any chance :) Got friends in Houston and Austin, but I tried both there ZIPs already for a local store pickup. We cant get them over here :(
  • wagnerml2wagnerml2 Member Posts: 1,376
    I have a fair amount of success in my polybag hunting. In addition to TRU, Target and Walmart, FIve Below has polys from time to time. They are never new releases, so I imagine they are overstocks from the other retailers.

    The other trick I use is to know when the merchendise comes in. I know that the shipping trucks generally hit my TRU on Tuesdays and Thursdays. I try to coordinate my visits with those days. My TRU employees also know me as a huge lego collector. As long as you are not being greedy and buying a bunch for resale, the employees would likely give you some "inside" info (to the extent they have it.) Finally, Each TRU has a lego rep that visits the stores to check the shelves. If you are fortunate enough to run into them, they can be a wealth of information as well.

    I also have a network of traders in different countries. We routinely send polys back and forth.

    Good luck!
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