I think that the token is a nice solution for the problem. Back in the days, blizzard tryed to ban gold sellers, but it was a lost cause. Instead, the token seems to have resolved the problem, letting workers that want to raid with consumables and stuffs to have the golds to do it. Personally, I don't find the gold buying really fair, but I understand that for many people is a necessity and I prefer to leave the economy and the farming spots to the player instead to the gold sellers.
Within the context of Classic, the method most frequently proposed is to re-tune bosses to make them harder. Rather than copying the numbers, re-create the relative difficulty. Kind of like, when you first start working out, you use small weights. When you get stronger, you lift bigger weights. The WoW community is more knowledgeable, more experienced, has better hardware, etc. We're "stronger." So give us tougher bosses. There are a lot of forms that could take. Bosses were constantly re-tuned during vanilla anyway, so if Ragnaros does 10% more damage or something, is that really a problem? I don't think it is. What about resistance gear? back in the day, collecting resist gear was a thing people did. But the numbers and strategies are so well known today that only the tank really needs it anymore. Bosses could be re-tuned with more resistible elemental damage so that's important for entire raids to gear appropriately. That would be entirely keeping with the spirit of vanilla even if the actually numbers sitting in a database somewhere were different than they were ~13 years ago. If you want to go a little farther, a few people have proposed adding new abilities to old bosses, adjusting their timing, etc.
Escort quests can take awhile to do. I have thoroughly tested all the escort quests in the game for time/xp. Most are worth doing, but as long as you are able to actually do them without failing. Most require you to pay special attention to the escortee as most are fragile and will die easily, so do your best to keep mobs off of the escortee during escort quests. The longest one in the game is the Tanaris chicken escort. The chicken escorts are only worth doing if you were able to do all 3 of them, as if you do, you will be able to turn in an additional easy quick XP turn in quest at BB, which makes them worth it.
I joined twitch in 2013 with the gamer name of FuriousPaul and I streamed speedruns of the classic Castlevania games from 2013 - 2017. Lately my streams have died down quite a bit due to working on Classic WoW leveling guides every day. Although I may come on occasionally and play a random game for fun on my Twitch stream. I talk a lot about WoW speedrunning on my channel, so feel free to follow and hang out to discuss vanilla WoW if you like. Classic WoW will be my main focus for a long time. Unfortunately I will have to wait until Classic WoW comes out before I start streaming it.
As you level, you will buy new ranks of spells. If you splurge out on an item upgrade, you will not have enough gold readily available to upgrade to the latest ranks of spells: placing you behind. Moreover, you can buy gear upgrades from the Auction House (AH) or vendors. Furthermore, you may have large investments that need to be paid for professors. You will need to purchase reagents and items such as leather, bolts of cloth, alchemy supplies – unless you have a charitable friend or another high-level alt.
An advice for those who are trying to compete monopolizers: you cannot beat them by selling for less if they follow right steps. You should do opposite: sell for more. Because market will come down if the price goes unreasonably high. You can set a bid on item for the price it should cost and buy out price for higher than a monopolizer is selling. So, common buyer may get an item for the right price or monopolizer has to buy the item at his loss.
Where to get materials and reagents you may ask? Buy for cheap off farmers in bulk or track Auction House lots. Get in touch with most big sellers. Communication is important here, send a whisper or write them a letter. It would be good for both of you to establish business relationships. Constant suppliers and buyers is convenient for both parties to save the time and effort.