When buying a telescope the first thing you need to do is to work out what type and size of telescope you’re going to buy. Always try telescopes before you buy, and don’t let sales staff push you into a poor or overly expensive sale. Check with your local astronomy club, which can give invaluable advice about what to buy according to your circumstances. You need to give them information about where you live, what you want to observe, and your budget. You should join the club, participate in stargazing sessions, and try to be actively involved in the setup of telescopes. If you can’t find a club, a local planetarium may be able to assist. A club can also advise on reputable dealers. Always buy from specialist telescope dealers, never from department stores or online. A reputable dealer will always ask questions about how much expertise you have and your astronomical interests.