6 Back to School Shopping Savings Strategies

Sending your kids back to school doesn’t mean you have to break the bank. There are a number of ways to get back to school shopping savings without skimping on the items your children need.

Be sure to read our other back to school tip and activities.

Back to School Shopping Savings #backtoschool

The Dollar Store

Today’s dollar store is not the one you remember from when you were a kid.

You can now find name-brand products at dollar stores for less than most major retailers.

Head to a dollar store for things like folders, pencil cases, construction paper and notebooks.

Pool with Other Parents

You’re going to be car-pooling this fall, so why not pool your back-to-school shopping?

Find other parents in your child’s class, and buy in bulk!

Assign items on the supply list to each parent and then meet up at the school or someone’s home.

Set out all the items and take one of each for your child.


You don’t need to buy everything at once.

If there are things you can wait for, like a backpack or extra school clothing, wait until late September.

Retailers try to close out the summer season and you may snag some terrific deals.

Keep in mind, however, that selections may be limited by this time.

Buy Winter Clothes Now

Winter boots, which are usually marked down a bit in May/June, are getting clearanced out to make room for this season’s new styles.

This is also the time to buy winter coats either online or at outlet stores as retailers get ready to starts sending summer items to the outlets.

Buy Refurbished

If you child needs a laptop, cell phone or other piece of technology for school, why buy new?

You can purchase most of these items refurbished while saving 20-30 percent of the original cost.

Shop Your Home

Pool together the school supplies the kids brought home in June.

Try to make as many full sets of things like crayons and colored pencils as you can.

Try to spread the reused school supplies across all of your children so that everyone gets a mix of old and new supplies.


  1. YES! The Dollar Store, so many people forget that stores like the DS exist. Love your tip on buying winter clothes sooner rather than later.

    1. People do often overlook the Dollar Store. And I think people don’t know exactly what they can get there. Love that place!

  2. I started Back to school shopping as soon as school let out last year and I think I spent a lot less than I would have if I waited until last minute! Also, I think I got a lot more!

    1. Oo. Good tip, Angela! Now I’m going to have to add another one to the list. Maybe next year 😉

  3. We shop the sales! I was able to score $600 worth of school clothes for right around $300 by hitting the sale racks and getting an additional percentage off. This was for four kids, btw, so I wasn’t being all extravagant on clothes shopping 🙂

    1. That’s a steal! I always shop the sales, too, and then add a coupon on top of that if I can 🙂

  4. Nice tips! I also scour the clearance bins at Walmart!

    1. Ooo. I didn’t mention the clearance bins at Walmart. Last time we went we got these amazing markers that smell. They’re still the kids’ favorites.

  5. These are some great ideas. I love the Dollar Store.

    1. We’re big fans of the dollar store, too. I think people are surprised at what they can get there.

    1. Thanks, Melanie. I think it’s easy to overlook what we have in our homes. But I cleaned out the “craft” area and was shocked at the amount of pencils and crayons we had.

  6. I love the Shop your Home idea! There are so many times that I decide to grab something at the store… only to realize that I already the same thing at home and had stuffed it in a drawer somewhere!

    1. Ugh. I do the exact same thing, Alicia! It drives me crazy. We “shopped at home” and I was shocked at how much we had hidden in drawers.

    1. I discovered the Shop Your Home last year. It’s my favorite way to save. I’m shocked at how much is hiding in our home!

  7. I always try to shop for clothes in the off season… it saves SO much!! :o) Thanks for linking up to Tasteful Tuesdays at Nap-Time Creations… you are being featured this weekend. I’ve tweeted, posted and +1’d the feature… Id love for you to repost on you social media :o) Emily

    1. I try to shop in the off season, too. The savings on winter boots, coats, etc. is staggering. I already have my stuff for this winter!

    2. BTW – Emily. I did Tweet your round up a couple of times. Thanks for the awesome feature 🙂

  8. Great ideas! I always stock up at the back to school sales when they are trying to get rid of it all, then, stash it away for next year 🙂
    Thanks for sharing at Share Your Stuff Tuesdays!!

    1. Good tip! I always feel like I’m being taken to the cleaners on back to school shopping. My favorite thing is to “shop our house.” I’m always shocked at how much we have scattered all over the house.

  9. Brilliant tips. I remember stocking up when I was at school and it felt like Christmas! I sometimes wonder if this is where my stationary addiction came from! Thanks for linking up to #featurefridays

    1. Our best trick is to actually “Shop” your own home… it’s amazing what we’ve stockpiled. No reason to buy again!

  10. We always hit the dollar store for some classroom extras and for our snack donations throughout the year! Great tips! Thank you for linking up at the Simply Sundays link party!

  11. All such great ideas! Thanks for sharing with the #homemattersparty. We have the most creative guests this week!

  12. Pool with other parents, and buy bulf is the best idea. And I’ve never heard it before. Love your blog name.
    Here from HomeMatters.

  13. As always, another fabulous post from you. Thanks for sharing on Traffic Jam Weekend. It’s one of my features! Dollar Tree is perfect for school supplies.

    1. Awesome! Thanks for the feature! We’re always looking for ways to save money at back to school time. My favorite is “shopping” our own house. When we round up everything, it’s shocking how many supplies we have.

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