Back-to-school money saving tips from readers

“In the past years my in-laws had a back-to-school party for all the kids. So that was great for us because each kid would get tons of supplies. Also we search for sales and buy tons to last all year and even into the next.”

Rebecca Mederano

“My family’s game plan is to attend as many back-to-school fairs as possible as well as shopping the sale papers. You just have to know when to shop and comparison-shop to get the best value.”

Melissa Burton

“My family took advantage of the penny, quarter and dollar sales for school supplies last year. I purchased double and/or the maximum allowed on everything on my child’s first grade list. I have the second grade list now, and I have begun to check off some of the items I will not need to buy. The early years, kindergarten, first and second, tend to request similar school items. I will buy any other supplies when I start seeing sales. It is a great advantage to have the school supply list in advance.”

Maria Lamothe

“We buy in bulk so we have plenty for the entire year.”

Tina Muz

“I have purchased excess quantities in years past from stores that have had excellent deals on school supplies. So until I run out I don’t need to really buy anything except maybe a couple of items.”

Laura Wysocki

“Look for the sales, sales, sales and cut many coupons. I also like to buy in large quantities when some stores have the PENNY Back-to-school Sale.”

Aracelly Carrillo

“We definitely surf the sales ads. With most stores competing with one another, the prices are usually cheap and the stores are all relatively close to one another. We always head out early because they go really quick.”

Machelle Anderson

“Every end-of-school year the kids bring all their contents from their desk back. Some folders and notebooks were not used. I also purchased extra from last school year. I usually tally up the excess supplies before shopping. Things like scissors, rulers, calculators are items that I make the kids look for in their piles of stuff so I don’t have to buy again.”

Ana Michelle Delson

“My family’s game plan for purchasing school supplies is 1) only buy on sale, 2) buy double, 3) put half away for use during the school year, and 4) salvage what we can from last year.”

Theresa Rohner

“My family’s game plan on saving money on back-to-school supplies is to use the ones my daughter had left over from this school year. Some of her binders are still in good shape, so she will be using those again. I purchased her a new backpack right before school was out so she will be using that again for the new school year. We will also be shopping around for the best bargains we can find.”

Linda Tyson

“We bought a more expensive rolling backpack from LL Bean. It was really worth it. It still looks good as new at the end of the year. The less expensive rolling backpacks we bought were broken and dragging on the ground before the year was over.”

Laurie Towne

“Another thing I do at the end-of-school supply season is buy items that are being clearanced that I know I will need for the following year.”

Karen Mowinski

“My family’s plan for purchasing school supplies is to shop only at discount stores, sales and to stock up so we don’t need to buy anything else during the school year. We usually find the teachers’ lists are underestimated.”

Penny Pierce

“Our game plan is always the same: My kids try to save and to take the best care of their supplies, and at the end of the year we select what will work for the next. I always try to get the best deals, but it is really hard because you can save 5 or 10 cents on one item at a certain store, but you have to drive a couple of miles to get the cheapest and-hello!-you are wasting gas. This year we have to replace three backpacks, so wish me luck finding the best deals.”

Veronica Virto

 "I think we are well on our way to saving for back to school.

1. We have put away all our usable supplies from last year like toolboxes, pencils, glue, etc.

2. I shopped back-to-school clearance sales last September and got generic stuff such as folders, notebooks, tissue boxes, etc.

3. We shop for our own supplies rather than buy a whole new ‘kit’ from school.”

Rupa Gaote

“Our family’s game plan to save money on back-to-school supplies is to buy them early, especially when they are on sale in the early or mid-summer. I feel you can beat the last-minute rush and stock up on the sale items.”

Ruben Guerrero

“We plan to use the leftover supplies from the last school season. We also plan to do what we do every year-hit all the sales. I usually create a spreadsheet of the supplies needed and which retailer is selling the supplies at the cheapest price. I always look forward to it-I’m such a nerd.”

Roselia Velasco

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