1971 Parker Brothers Mille Bornes Card Game

Vintage Mille Bornes Card Game

Dollar Flipper Ebay Flip, Ebay Research, eBay Tips 13 Comments

The toy and game area of the thrift store is normally jam packed with stuff. You’ll find tons of cool things you can flip. I’ve discussed a lot of these previously “fun” flips already:

If it’s not obvious yet, I’m not, haven’t ever been, and don’t plan on being one of the cool kids. Because of this, I feel at home in the toy and electronics section. And by “electronics” I mean video games – no use lying here.. I’ve come to terms with this, and I figure that I can use my love and knowledge to my advantage!

1971 Parker Brothers Mille Bornes Card Game

That green thing is a card tray. More card games need to use these to help keep game-play organized!

A French Card Game?

The Mille Bornes card game was a French car-themed game that was made in 1954. The idea behind the game is that you’re doing a touring race with the other players. The objective is to be the first to get to 1000 km while avoiding hazards such as flat tires. It sounds fun, and I wish I got to play it before I sold it! Maybe I’ll see it again?

Pro Tip – You can use eBay as your own Rent-A-Center. You can buy video and board games, and  re-sell them once you’re done playing them! I’ve done this with a few video games where I only ended up paying the eBay fees on my sale.

Here’s the details of the flip.

  • Purchase price – $2.14
  • End Selling Price – $26.99 + 5.60 S/H
  • Fees and Shipping/Handling – $7.73

Total Profit:  $22.72 This flip is right in my target range. The thing is, if I had seen it on the shelf now and checked completed listings, I’d probably not even buy it!

Timing a Flip

I’ve talked about this before when I flipped my huge RC plane, but timing is everything on a lot of items. In that situation, I flipped the plane for a cool $140 profit (sold for $189.99 including S&H). By the time I got around to writing a blog post about it ~5 months later, they were selling for $36 including S&H. The sucker cost me over $25 to ship it, so I’m not sure how the seller even made a profit!

The Mille Bornes card game lesson isn’t as drastic, but it still points to the same result. I sold this about 6 months ago for a $32.59. Here are completed listings that I just found.

Mille Bornes 1971 Completed Listings eBay

There were a few that were closer to the $30 mark, but a lot were lower.

This just re-inforces the List it and Forget it (LIFI) idea to me. I’m not in this game for a quick nickel. Let’s take that slow quarter and list it high. The right buyer will come!

Box condition

Have you ever seen one of those game boxes with tape all along the corners to hold it together?

Peck's Bad Boy Board Game eBay Taped Corners

I think every version of Mouse Trap looks like this after the first time it’s been played!

Depending on the age, you can still sell games in this condition. Someone who’s going to use the game might grab a damaged box one on the cheap. They still get to enjoy the game at a fraction of full price. Collectors will most likely shy away though. A very old game can be the exception.

Is the game complete?

When you buy any board or card game, you need to check to see if all of the pieces are there. There are three resources I use for this.

The first is other eBay listings. Sometimes, another seller has already done all of the research for you and will include the game components in their listings! These listings usually have “complete” in the title, so you can use that as a key word when you’re doing your own research. I don’t trust this method on its own unless I have to, but it’s a great starting point.

The second resource is the instructions. Newer games explicitly list all of their pieces, but the older ones were a little more “loosey-goosey.” When I listed the Mill Borne card game, I wasn’t sure if all the cards were there just using eBay and the instructions.

Next, I go to the last (and probably best) resource for board games on the internet.

Board Game Geeks (BGG)

This site has reviews, tips, instructions, and general ratings of basically every board game ever made. It’s fantastic. We’re going to finish this blog post up on a tangent!

800px-Tangent-calculus_a eBay

I think I’m going to try to use this picture once per month.

My wife and I love playing board games. We used to play a lot more before our daughter was born, but that’s life I guess. And no, I’m not just talking about Monopoly. We’ve been playing board games since college when we got introduced to Settlers of Catan. This was before it was sold at Target too. So yeah, we’re board game hipsters. Back when we actually had this elusive “free time” and had “disposable income” that wasn’t being thrown at daycare and the mortgage, we were able to play a large variety of games.

The best resource to find a game, hands down, is BGG. The reason it’s so helpful is that you can add a lot of filters, like how many players you have, how long you want to play, the style of game (party, trivia, war, etc.). On top of all this, every game on the site has extensive reviews, comments from other players, and even some videos to help with instructions. It even has helpful links to eBay and Amazon if you want to purchase the game. If you’re looking for a new board game, this site is the place to go.

So there you have it. I’m not only becoming an clothing re-seller expert, but I’m also a gaming geek. Just don’t give me a swirly.

Image Credit: Wikimedia

Comments 13

  1. Love this post, and congrats on that great flip! I sell quite a few toys/games, also, and I’ve done pretty well with parting out games that aren’t complete. I’ve sold a ton of monopoly pieces like this. Do you ever part out incomplete games?

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      I have not done that yet, but I think it’s a great idea to recoup some costs. I just feel like it goes against my “increase average sale” mantra right now! I do have a board game that is 98% complete (I counted all of the pieces that I had and divided it by the total # that should have been there). It looks like the missing piece isn’t that important as it’s one of many, so it should still sell well.

  2. Mille Bornes was one of my favorite card games as a kid :). You really should try it (or at least an online simulation so you know what you’re missing).

    1. Post

      That’s awesome! Now I’m really disappointed that I missed out on it. I’ll check out the online version, but I’ve always been a fan of real versions for some reason. Hopefully I’ll find it again at some point in the future!

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  4. I have the best memories of playing Mille Bornes in 1990 with my mom. She had picked up the vintage one like yours at a yard sale. I found a newer version of it for 2.99 at a used bookstore.

    1. Post
  5. You’re right. I saw the Mille Bornes game at a SA about 2 weeks ago, picked it up, looked it up, and put it right back down. LOL There certainly are cycles. Perhaps if I had Terapeak or something and saw that it was selling for decent $ in the past, I might have kept it. LOL

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      Isn’t that funny? I hate when I see something in one of my “to list” piles that has dropped in value!

  6. My wife and I are board gamers too! I think it’s funny that so many FI/blogger folks are into gaming. Probably has to do with too much time spent on the computer as a kid. Ha. Our favorites tend to run toward the FFG line (Arkham, Elder Sign, LotR LCG, etc.).

    That said, don’t knock monopoly! I HATED it for years, but I finally found the real rules (no free parking payout, all props get auctioned, etc.) and I really really like it now. A “real” game shouldn’t take more than about two hours, and that’s two hours of haggling, shouting, and generally getting to pretend that you’re a wheeling-and-dealing badass. Sign me up!

    1. Post

      I think we’d be playing more of the FFG games if we had more time. It’s tough with our daughter though. I think FFG is the company that made Netrunner.. I’ve heard that game is a blast!

      LOL about the monopoly hate. I really enjoy the game and you’re right. The reason everyone hates it is because of house rules. The actual game is really fun and is just as cut throat as Settler’s of Catan with the trading. I think it’s just a little more complicated which means that a generic player will have a tough time with it.

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