Back-to-school shopping season is second to Christmas in terms of family expenditures. An annual index chart found that it costs an average $1,000 to send a child back to school.
However, following the tips on wise planning and making smart decisions may help you become a savvy shopper and buy everything that you need without breaking your bank account.
1. Make a list and get your child involved. When making the list, consider the difference of wants from needs. Beware with the power of trend. Some school supplies are more expensive when they are the latest style. The list will also help you to estimate the cost and avoid splurging on unwanted items.
2. Buy in bulk. Accept the reality that you will always need papers, glue, pencils, and notebooks. Bulk is always discounted and it would save you many late-night unwanted trips back to stores.
3. Watch for promotions. Just like Christmas shopping season, different stores run promotions during back-to-school shopping. Follow stores on social media (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc.) and take advantage of their coupons and other offers. In the never-ending competitions between giant retail chains and online shops, you can always find everything that you need at a cheaper price.
4. Use the list of supplies from your child’s teacher. Believe it or not, teachers have reasons for including a particular item on a list. Even colors of folders have a reason. When dealing with many projects and students, colors help the teachers to be more organized.
5. Invest in quality. It is important to look at the quality especially for items that are supposed to last the whole school year. Take for instance bag packs, laptops, and other items. Even if they are a little more, it is always worth investing in quality than in quantity.