Congratulations, you’re the proud owner of a new guitar! Whether you have wanted one for ages or if it’s an impulse purchase, many hours of fun and enjoyment are ahead of you. You might think the major decision is now over and done with, but now that you have your guitar it’s time to think about some of the other accessories and items you might need to buy too.
Even if you are not planning on carrying your guitar around with you, it’s a good idea to buy some sort of case to protect it from accidental damage or from collecting dust and dirt. There are two main options for a guitar case. Firstly, a soft case is cheaper to buy and much lighter, but will not offer a huge degree of protection.
A hard case may be more expensive and bulkier, but will stop your guitar from becoming accidentally chipped or bashed when you are moving it around. Always double check that you have the right size of case for your guitar as they can vary quite a lot.
It’s perfectly possible just to pick up your guitar and start strumming away, but tuition will help you progress more quickly and will teach you the basics of reading music and the theory behind guitar playing.
There are several options for tuition, including online lessons by following instructional videos, learning from a book and getting personal tuition in your home or at the teacher’s. Decisions about the most appropriate method will depend not only on your budget but also on how much time you have to devote to learning.
Plectrums and Picks
New guitar players often find that their nails aren’t strong enough to stand up to repeated strumming and plucking of the strings, and it is probably a good idea to invest in some little plastic plectrums to help you along.
This is not a massive investment as plectrums are fairly cheap, but if you want something a little more sophisticated then there are products on the market such as little metal covers which sit over the fingertips and protect the nails or more expensive plectrums made from metal. Buy a few plectrums as they are bound to get lost now and again.
Musical instruments are expensive things to buy, and unfortunately your new guitar could make you a target for thieves. Firstly check you are not covered on your household insurance policy, but many have exclusion clauses for musical instruments.
If you need to get separate insurance which is designed for classical guitars. UK insurers offer a range of policies but you may be better visiting a broker for specialist advice about your guitars.
UK policies generally cover you for the UK only, so if you are thinking about travelling overseas with your guitar, you will need to arrange separate cover or make sure it is listed on your travel insurance policy. Also remember that if you are flying with a budget airline, you’ll need to book it in separately as excess baggage.
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Morag Peers is a keen writer and parent with musical children