5 Ways to Save While Back to School Shopping


Grab your Trapper Keeper and Troll Topper, it’s almost back to school time. And if you think back-to-school shopping has gotten more expensive, you’re right. According to the National Retail Federation, back-to-school spending has increased more than 40 percent in the past 10 years. Given the hit to the pocketbook, going into the season with a plan can lead to big savings.

Here are a few tips to save money back-to-school shopping this summer.

  • Do a closet/backpack/junk drawer sweep – Whether you’re planning on pencils, paper, erasers, highlighters or rulers, chances are you have a good supply in stock before heading to the store.
  • Clip coupons – Second only to winter holidays in terms of spending, back-to-school season is a bonanza for retailers. Many look to increase sales this season with coupons. Check your mail, the Sunday paper, websites or download mobile apps that provide personalized coupons and notifications
  • Price match – It takes a bit of homework, but knowing the price match policies can pay off.  TheSimpleDollar.com recently compiled and rated many major retailers’ policies. If you don’t want to do the work, Walmart’s Savings Catcher compares the prices of your purchase to local competitor ads and will automatically refund the difference on a gift card.
  • Don’t forget the dollar store – Whether it’s Dollar Tree, Dollar General, Family Dollar or another bargain store, they do deliver on price. Stock up on pencils, loose leaf paper or other supplies and watch the savings pile up. Buying these smaller items at dollar stores is a great way to save money while back-to-school shopping.
  • Celebrate tax holidays – Although not applicable everywhere, about a third of the states in the U.S. have state tax holidays. Depending on the tax rate, these savings can be substantial, especially when buying big ticket items such as dorm furniture, classroom electronics or clothes for your teen. To see a full calendar, check out this page.

By taking a simple, smart approach to back-to-school shopping you can get what you need without breaking the bank.

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