Frequently Asked Questions


Q: How and when can I donate to the White Elephant Sale?
A: We accept donations of gently used, good quality items year round. For more information, click here for HOW TO DONATE.
Q: What kind of lead time should I allow to make an appointment for a van pickup?
A: Please call 510-839-5919 to schedule your appointment well in advance. During most of the year the van pickup can be arranged within 2 to 3 weeks.  However, January and February are very busy months and the wait time is longer.
Q: Are there any items you do not accept?
A: There are some items we cannot accept. Please check our list of items that we do not accept or ask the van driver, who has final discretion on what we can take. Please click here for DONATIONS WE CANNOT ACCEPT.
Q: Are donated items tax deductible?
A: Subject to current IRS and tax regulations, all items donated to the Oakland Museum Women’s Board White Elephant Sale are tax deductible for income tax purposes at their present fair market value. The Internal Revenue Code places the responsibility on the donor for estimating fair market value of the property. The Oakland Museum Women’s Board Federal Tax ID Number is 94-3102469. Tax laws frequently change. Before making a donation, please consult with your tax advisor.
Q: Does the White Elephant Sale provide appraisals or evaluations of donations for income tax purposes?
A: No.
Q: If I unintentionally donate something can I get back?
A: All White Elephant Sale donations are final. If you do unintentionally donate an item, please EMAIL US within three business days of your donation, and we will make every attempt to locate your item. Please note we cannot guarantee that we will be able to locate an item once it has been donated, and we ask you to carefully check and consider all your items before donating.
Q: Is the White Elephant a participant in Amazon’s smile.amazon.com program?
A: Yes, to benefit the White Elephant Sale as the designated non-profit of your choice, you will find us listed under OMWB (Oakland Museum Women’s Board.) You need to remember to enter Amazon.com by using smile.amazon.com. You can still use Amazon Prime. Based on the amount of the order you place Amazon will give back .5% of your purchase to OMWB. (The White Elephant Sale.)


Q: What are the dates for the 2018 White Elephant Sale?
A: The White Elephant Sale returns to the Bay Area on Saturday, March 3 and Sunday, March 4, 2018. On both days, the Sale hours are 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and admission is free.
Q: What is the date for the Preview Sale?
A: Preview Sale is Sunday, January 28, 2018, from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Admission is $16 in advance for online e-ticket, $15 for mail-in ticket, $15 for ticket purchased at the OMCA Store, and $20 on the day of the Sale. Advance tickets are available beginning December 1, 2017. Click here to purchase E-TICKETS ONLINE. Click here to purchases TICKETS BY MAIL, or you may purchase tickets from the OMCA Store. The store is open when the museum is open Wednesday through Sunday. You don’t need to buy a museum admission ticket to visit the store.
Q: Why did I receive a wristband instead of a Preview ticket?
A: The wristband is your Preview entrance ticket.  With wristbands replacing paper tickets, you will not be admitted to Preview without a wristband. Fit it snugly to your left wrist and show it before you enter the warehouse. Once secured the wristband should not slip off your hand.
Q: Can Preview wristbands/tickets be purchased in advance at the Oakland Museum of California (OMCA)?
A: Yes, please go to the OMCA Store on the 2nd floor of the OMCA at 1000 Oak Street, Oakland CA 94607 during the Museum’s open hours. As long as supplies last, Preview Sale wristbands/tickets can be purchased at the OMCA starting December 1, 2017 through January 27, 2018. For directions to the OMCA, visit their website at museumca.org.


Q: Where is the Sale held?
A: The White Elephant Sale and Preview Sale both take place in a permanent warehouse site at 333 Lancaster Street, located on the Oakland Estuary. Click here for directions.
Q: How large is the warehouse and how do I find my way around?
A: Our vast warehouse is 96,000 square feet and includes 17 different selling departments. Click here for a WAREHOUSE MAP.
Q: Are animals allowed in the warehouse?
A: No animals are permitted in the warehouse, with the exception of service animals.
Q: Are food or drinks allowed in the warehouse?
A: No. Food and drinks (except bottled water) are not allowed in the warehouse.
Q: Are strollers, shopping carts or backpacks allowed in the warehouse?
A: No.  These items are not permitted and need to be checked.  We do provide a secure Check Stand location where you can check these items while you shop. The location is at the Lancaster Street entrance to the warehouse and is designated as a Check Stand area. Click here for a WAREHOUSE MAP.
Q: Is there a secure place to leave my purchases as I continue to shop?
A: There is a Check Stand location at the Derby Avenue entrance where you can leave items you have already purchased. Click here for a WAREHOUSE MAP.
Q: Is there transportation to and from the warehouse?
A: Yes.  During both the Preview and the White Elephant Sale a free shuttle provides transportation between the Fruitvale BART station and the warehouse. The shuttle will run from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Sale days.
Q: Is parking available near the warehouse?
A: Parking is available but it is limited.  We recommend whenever possible coming by carpool or taking public transportation. Parking in the Fruitvale BART garage is free on weekends.
Q: Is handicap parking available?
A: A limited number of handicapped parking spaces are available. There is ramp access at both entrances to the warehouse.


Q: What forms of payment are accepted for purchase?
A: We accept cash, checks with identification, debit cards and VISA, MasterCard, American Express and Discover credit cards for payment of purchases.
Q: Can purchased items be returned?
A: No.  All sales are final.  All items are sold “as is” and no returns or exchanges are allowed.


Q: What is the pick-up policy for purchases?
A: All items must be picked up and removed from the warehouse on the day of purchase, with the exception of furniture and pianos. Furniture and pianos must be removed six days from the date of purchase or these items will be re-donated.