Donna’s Deals: 5 Ways to Save Money on Back-to-School Shopping


As students head back to school soon, you might be seeing a little less money in the bank account, and there’s a good reason why.

According to the National Federation of Retail states, “Total spending for K-12 schools and college combined is projected to reach $82.8 billion, nearly as high as last year’s $83.6 billion.”

Families with children in elementary through high school plan to spend an average of $684.79 each, compared with last year’s $687.72 for a total of $27.5 billion. That’s the third-highest total in the history of the survey following a peak of $30.3 billion in 2012 and last year’s $29.5 billion.

And with families who have students heading to college, as well as, college and graduate students purchasing for themselves plan to spend an average $942.17 each, down from last year’s $969.88 for a total of $55.3 billion. That’s an all-time high in the history of the survey, up from last year’s previous record of $54.1 billion.

We have these 5 tips on how to save money and perhaps not spend $600 per student.

1. Don’t feel like you have to buy everything at once
Retailers will rotate what items they will highlight as a special. One week, notebooks or shorts. The next week, it will be backpacks. Pay attention to the specials and pace yourself.

2. Review what you have before shopping
Sorting through your student’s closet is probably not at the top of your list of things to do this summer, but in the end, it will save you time and money.

3. Take advantage of price matching
Many retailers will price match other retailers. Find out their policy which may require an ad or other documentation of pricing.

4. Shop consignment sales
Children grow so fast that they will typically not wear clothes long enough to wear them out. Consignment sales are a great place to find clothes that are sold for a discounted price. Check out Kids Consignment Sale website for the latest sales in your area.

5. Purchase refurbished electronics
Whether you are looking to buy a laptop, iPad, or other devices, purchasing a refurbished electronic can save you up to 40% off the retail price and most refurbished electronics come with a warranty as well.