This seems pretty straight forward right? Just go to Google or Yahoo and type in "Purchase or Buy Escape Room Props Online." Escape Room Suppliers from across the globe will populate on your screen. Nothing else to it! Unfortunately, it isn't quite so simple.
Escape Rooms are a relatively new entertainment option. According to the Escape Rooms Wikipedia Page they first became popular stateside 2010 with the first permanent Escape Room debuting in Asia (2008). Given how young this form of entertainment is it should not be all that surprising to find the secondary industry of creating props and puzzles is still rather small. Because of this internet searches tend to bring up Escape Rooms themselves instead of suppliers of Escape Room props and puzzles.
Another obstacle standing in one's way is finding items that fit in with the Escape Room's theme. I cannot stress this enough: Decide upon an overall theme and stick to it! A cohesive theme is extremely important. The players will find the experience significantly more rewarding if they working towards an understood goal. Sure, you can put a few M. Night Shyamalan twists in there (and they can prove extremely rewarding), but they need to fit in with what is going on. Shoehorning a big fancy prop because it looks cool instead of a smaller item that fits your theme can actually result in a net negative. Often times shops which make the items themselves will offer some sort of customization option. Take some time and figure out if a custom item will benefit your Escape Room whether it be through aesthetics or the combination to a lock.
This is just a brief rundown of the obstacles standing in the way of finding the perfect items for your Escape Room. It is worth spending the extra time and digging through the page results of your internet searches. Think of it as an additional piece of the overall investment. A few extra minutes spent searching through results may result in a few more reservations.
If you are interested in more ideas of Escape Room puzzles and props check out this article over on Nowescape 101 Puzzle Ideas for Escape Rooms.