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Money Matters Blog

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

11 Ways to Save on Back-to-School Shopping

Back-to-school time already? Did you know the average American parent will spend about $700 per child this shopping season? If that’s likely to put a damper on your summer, take a deep breath and relax.

You don’t need to spend yourself into debt just because everyone else seems to be doing it. Instead, take a proactive approach when shopping for the new school year and spend much less than the national average. Let Community Financial show you how!

Here are 11 ways to save on back-to-school shopping.

1. Go crazy for coupons
Use coupon sites like RetailMeNot.com, CouponCabin.com and Coupons.com for percentage-off or money-off coupons to help you save big.

2. Shop the dollar store
Before hitting the big-box stores and their big-box prices, scour your local dollar store for school supplies that will only cost a buck.

3. Shop online for backpacks
If your child is set on having a character backpack, check out Hollar.com for a great selection at crazy-low prices. Does your little one have designer taste? Try eBags.com or 6PM.com for brand-name bags at a fraction of their regular price.

4. Shop tax-free
Many states offer tax-free holidays on clothing, footwear and/or school supplies during the back-to-school shopping season for easing the financial burden of cash-strapped parents. Take advantage by shopping during these days.

5. Shop on Sunday and Monday
Weekly sales on school supplies go live at the beginning of the week — and the hottest items will be grabbed up first. Shop early in the week to score the best deals.

6. Utilize in-store price matching
Many stores, like Staples, Kohl’s and JCPenney, offer in-store price matching or will even beat a competitor’s lower price. Make sure to ask about price matching before you pay!

7. Use discounted gift cards
Don’t start your shopping until you check out Raise.com or GiftCardGranny.com for discounted gift cards to your favorite stores.

8. Coordinate with friends
If you’ve got a bunch of friends who are also slogging through an endless list of school supplies, see if you can work together. Divide and conquer by letting each friend shop a different store and picking up enough supplies for the entire group. You can also swap supplies you already have at home.

9. Follow stores on social media
Follow your favorite stores on Facebook and Twitter for notices about sale events, plus coupon links to help you save more.

10. Compare prices
Use an app or a website like ShopSavvy, Price.com or PriceGrabber to help compare prices on big-ticket items with just a quick barcode scan.

11. Time your shopping
For the best budget mileage, learn the markdown cycle of your favorite stores. For example, Target offers discounts on children’s clothing every Monday and TJ Maxx posts new markdowns on Wednesdays.

Your Turn: What’s your secret back-to-school shopping hack? Share it with us in the comments.

*Community Financial does not endorse the information, content, presentation or accuracy, nor make any warranty, expressed or implied, regarding the websites and/or apps mentioned above.

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