12 Back-to-School Shopping Tips You Need To Know

It’s that time of year again. Back to School shopping can be stressful and expensive, especially if you’re shopping for multiple kids.

I’m sharing cost-saving tips to save your sanity and your budget.

school supplies

1. Take Inventory at Home First

Check for unused school supplies/overstock at home. It’s super frustrating to purchase new supplies only to find brand-new unused supplies at home.

Gather all of your school supplies in one area and take note of the items that you have that are brand new, useable or need to be replaced.

donate and keep pile

2. Go Through Your Kids’ Closets First

You need to do this with your child because it’s too overwhelming for them to do it by themselves.

Have them try on anything that looks like it could be too short or too tight and get rid of anything they won’t wear.

Establish the items of clothing that can be passed on to a younger sibling or donated to your charity of choice.

kids closet

3. Establish Your Child’s Immediate Needs

The warmer weather will still be around when school starts so take advantage of summer sales.

Kids can wear short sleeve shirts year-round and if you have boys they will most likely try to wear shorts year-round too. You don’t need to purchase for the next season unless it’s a really great deal.

Kids also go through growth spurts quickly so you don’t want them to grow out an item before they even get to wear it.

kids shoes

4. Write Down Your Child’s Sizes

Keep an index card or use the notes on your phone to keep track of your child’s shoe/ shirt/ pants sizes and wardrobe needs.

This can be an easy reference while you’re shopping in stores without them or online.


5. Establish a Budget

Don’t buy a lot of clothing without your older kids. It’s not a good deal if your kid won’t wear it. Their style and preferences can be really hard to guess if they aren’t with you.

You also don’t want to waste your time with multiple trips to stores for returns.

Give your teenager a budget and they will become more interested in stretching those dollars.

Shop at stores like TJ Maxx for greater savings on current styles. Go generic when you can on school supplies and wardrobe basics.

students with backpacks

6. Invest in the quality items that you want to last the whole school year

Don’t go cheap on a backpack unless you are ok with replacing it within the same school year. LL Bean and Jansport both have lifetime guarantees on their backpacks.

Many students don’t have time to go back to their lockers throughout the day. This makes a large backpack with comfortable straps even more important.

printer with paper

7. Print the School Supply List and Keep it With You

It’s best to bring the school supply list with you if possible.

Some stores print up the school supply list, but they can run out. It’s also really hard to read the list from your phone online while trying to focus on locating and crossing off the items in the store.

If you need to visit more than one store, keep track of items with the notes on your phone.

shopping bags 1

8. Be Prepared to Shop at More Than One Store

Most stores will have a few underpriced items, but you can quickly lose those savings by purchasing other overpriced items.

Take advantage of tax-free shopping weekends for even more savings.

You can also find many of the school supply items online and buy in bulk for items that you use a lot or items that need to be purchased for multiple kids.

Amazon has back-to-school kits that include all of the essentials in one box.

shop button on keyboard

9. Shop at Stores With Price Matching

Check the store’s website for details first, but this could come in handy if you have a sales ad and want to reduce trips.

shopping cart in grocery store

10. Look for Deals at Your Local Grocery Store

Don’t overlook your local grocery store when it comes to back-to-school shopping. Multitask and you can cross a few items off your school shopping and grocery list.

You can also earn reward points with your purchases to save on fuel and future purchases.

shopping app

11. Use Apps for Pricing and Discounts

Scan the tag for instant price comparison with Redlaser and Shop Savvy for price checking, Retail Me Not for coupons, and Walmart Savings Catcher for price adjustments.

Check the store’s website for additional coupons and savings.

Many stores provide extra incentives if you sign up for their newsletter, app, or text alerts.

cashback for shopping app

12. Earn Cashback for Online Purchases

Earn 100% commission for every qualifying purchase TopCashback. 

A big part of back-to-school shopping success is planning before you go. Good Luck!

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1 thought on “12 Back-to-School Shopping Tips You Need To Know”

  1. I actually have no idea about the cashback. I wish I knew about it just a few months earlier so we can save some on all the stuffs we bought. Oh well, better late than never, I will keep it in mind for the next year.

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