The Grand Exchange (GE) is a trading hub to the north-west of Varrock, and is available for use by all players. All trading that goes on through the GE is created by players - you can either put up a listing of items you wish to sell, or put in an offer to buy someone else's items. Whenever a buy and sell offer are matched, the sale is completed - the seller gets their money and the buyer gets their item(s).
As with direct player-to-player trading, there are no price restrictions on the GE - you are free to charge or offer as many coins as you see fit for what you are selling or buying. That said, the employees at the GE track all trading that goes on in RuneScape and keep note of the average price at which each item is traded for - this is called the 'guide price'. There are no obligations to buy or sell items at the guide price, it is simply there to show the current relative value of items, so that you can know when you are paying over the odds or getting a good deal.
3. Where can I trade with other players?
Pretty much anywhere! The Grand Exchange is still a good place to visit to buy and sell items in bulk, but you may not always be getting the best deal. With direct player-to-player trades you have the opportunity to negotiate with another player so that you both get what you want. You can also trade items for other items. You don't always have to use gold coins to buy and sell.
Aside from the Grand Exchange, other popular trading centres from RuneScape's history were: Varrock's market/west bank (on world 1, for F2P items); Falador's park/east bank (on World 2, for members' items); and, much earlier in RuneScape's history, around the back of Varrock Palace for rare and discontinued items.
4. Can I give and receive gifts?
Another benefit that free trade provides is the ability to give gifts to other people of whatever value you wish. So, you could give your best friend in-game a valuable item as a present, or on indefinite loan, or you could help out a struggling quester or someone new to the game with some helpful items (without having to worry about trade restrictions).
If you are planning to loan an item to another player that you don't know very well, you might wish to consider using the Item Lending system instead of simply trading it to them. This system lets you set your own terms of the loan. There's also no reason why you cannot ask for some money in return, should you wish.
You should also be aware that some players may ask you for gifts (typically, by saying something akin to 'Free stuff pl0x'). If such players are after something specific, then, again, Item Lending may be a good way to go. Often, the best thing to give such players is friendly advice on how to earn money for themselves - it will do you both better in the long run.
5. Can I share loot drops with my clan/friends?
Clans and groups can also benefit from free trade, as they have the ability to help gear each other up for an upcoming clan or boss fight. It also comes in handy for clans where high-value drops are concerned, as they can decide who of the clan is most in need of receiving a rare drop, or in what proportion any loot is shared between the group. There are systems in place to help with these things - namely LootShare and CoinShare - which are still of use in some circumstances or with certain groups or clans, but free trade enables clans and groups with more choice.
6. What are drop parties?
Drop parties are held at Falador's Party Room, which is run by RuneScape semi-celebrity Party Pete. Anyone is welcome to place items in the party chest and then, when someone pulls the nearby lever, balloons drop from the ceiling containing those items. It's good fun rushing round, bursting balloons, and, who knows, you might even get something interesting out of it.
There is no value limit on items that can be placed into the party chest, so, if you want to get involved in one, pop by the Party Room yourself or arrange one with a group of other players.
7. How do I make money as a new player?
Players who are new to RuneScape would do well to complete The Blood Pact quest and then return to the Lumbridge Catacombs to collect the statuettes - Xenia rewards players with some coins for their troubles. Completing Tasks is another good way to earn some money as, although new players will not have the levels to complete many Tasks, the rewards earned from those you can do can help you to increase your skill levels to then complete more Tasks.
Collecting lower-level resources that are still of use to higher-level players is also a solid money-making tip for newer players. Items like ores, rune essence, logs, herbs, feathers and flax are typically in constant demand. If combat is your thing, then the Slayer skill might be a good place to start - it can become quite profitable when you reach higher levels (but can still be a nice bit of income for lower-level players).
Please bear in mind that these are NOT the only ways that can help you to earn money, so experiment with different skills and minigames to see what works best for you. Also, one thing you should probably avoid is asking for handouts - it does not make you any friends and you?ll not be learning how to be self-sufficient.
8. How do I make money as a trader?
Making money in RuneScape through trading comes down to the basic economics of supply and demand, and buying low/selling high. One tool we offer to help with this are the Grand Exchange section of the website, which tracks the guide prices of tradeable items.
Figuring out which items are about to rise or fall in value is something you will need to learn through experience, and by making educated guesses based on new content (and the changing popularity of old content). Investing in oft-used resources for training skills is a more reliable way to earn money, but the profit margins for such items tend to be small.