Going to school is expensive. There are school fees, pictures, field trips, lunches, and not to mention all those beginning of the year necessities like supplies, gym shoes and new clothes. Even with back to school shopping sales, it can really add up, especially if you are the parents of multiple, school-aged children.
First and foremost, pick up a list of necessary supplies that the school hands out. Many school have switched to a communal approach, where all the children contribute and teachers hand out supplies on an as needed basis. Some schools are very specific, asking for name brands so all children have exactly the same supplies.
When buying supplies stick to the list. There is no need to go out and purchase special supplies that aren’t on the list because your child won’t need them. Your child may want special Hannah Montanna pencils, but forking out the extra money for them is pointless because they may very well end up in another kid’s art box.
For years, wise parents have driven from store to store to get the best prices. You can save yourself the gas money by visiting the store websites and browsing ads online. From there, make a plan jotting down what supplies to get where and figure out the most efficient order to visit the stores.
This will also save time and energy, because you will know exactly where to find what you are looking for and won’t need to shop around physically.
When it comes to new clothes for school, start by going through what your children already have. If they have plenty of socks and underwear, there is no need to get more. Figure out what they need. There is no need to go out and drop $30 dollars on a new outfit for the first day of school. If your kids have a clean pair of shoes already, use those for gym shoes.
Once you determine what your children actually need clothing wise. Try visiting an outlet mall or checking online. Children’s Place and Old Navy sell quality clothing and their sales are often times at lower prices than places like Wal-Mart or Good Will. Also, a lot of times you can find whole lots of clothes on eBay in the size you need for very low prices. Many sellers list the items with pictures and tell you if they come from non-smoking or non-pet homes.
By evaluating what you need and finding the best prices ahead of time, you can save a lot of money on back to school shopping as well as time and energy.