5 Tips for Budget-Friendly Back to School Shopping

I can’t believe that I’ve been thinking and writing so much about getting ready to go back to school lately. It seems like I just started planning summer break fun, and now here we are buying school supplies! School supplies are one expense that most people don’t often budget for, so today I’ve put together five tips for saving money and making the most of your back to school shopping.

5 Tips for Budget-Friendly Back to School Shopping

Shop at Home

Before you go out and buy the three red ballpoint pens your child’s teacher has requested, look around the house to see if you still have the pens that you bought last year. The same goes for bigger ticket items like backpacks and clothing.


Has your child outgrown last year’s cartoon character lunchbox? If so, perhaps the neighbor’s kid down the street would like it and has a sports team lunchbox that he’s ready to pass down, too. Whether you make the exchange in an online resale group or work with your neighbors to create an item swap on your street, trading items instead of buying new can help you save AND be environmentally friendly- it can even be fun! One friend of mine created a “swap table” at her street’s block party this summer and the kids had a blast sharing items.

Don’t Wait and Don’t Hurry

I know that sometimes tackling that school supply list is just too much for your summer brain to handle. But, waiting until the last minute will end up costing you more by shopping last-minute at local drug and convenient stores. On the other hand, if you’re in too big a hurry, you might miss out on some great sales as well. Office supply and big box stores often host back to school sales as soon as school gets out, so keep an eye out for deals so that you can knock your list out in small bits before the next school season starts.

5 Tips for Budget-Friendly Back to School Shopping

Don’t Buy Everything on the List

If you have kids in middle school or high school, chances are that they may not need everything on the school supply list. It’s best to start the first day with a notebook, pencils and/or pens and then figure out what supplies are needed for each subject. Don’t forget that giving older kids a budget and a list can be a great way to give them some independence and a real-world math lesson, too!

Get Rewards

OK, you’ve shopped at home, you’ve swapped with neighbors, you’ve waited, and you’ve saved. Now comes the time to buy some new products, too. Getting a great credit card with no annual fee that allows you to earn valuable rewards is one of the best ways to make purchasing all of these back to school supplies benefit you.

5 Tips for Budget-Friendly Back to School Shopping

The BuyPower Card from Capital One is a great credit card for everyday purchases, especially big ticket items, because each swipe of the card allows you to accumulate Earnings that can be used to purchase a new Chevrolet, Buick, GMC or Cadillac vehicle.

If you have a kid nearing college age, then one day soon a new car could be on your back to school list- it’s never too early to plan!

Here are a few things you might want to know about the BuyPower Card from Capital One:

  • You’ll enjoy 5% Earnings on your first $5,000 worth of purchases every year, and then unlimited 2% Earnings on all purchases after that
  • Every time you make a purchase with the BuyPower card, you get Earnings toward a new Chevrolet, Buick, GMC or Cadillac vehicle
  • Earnings don’t expire, and there’s no limit on how much you can earn or redeem
  • Cardmembers enjoy World Elite MasterCard® benefits

Thank you Capital One for sponsoring this post! This is a paid endorsement. All opinions are my own and were not directed by Capital One.  To learn more important information about the BuyPower Card from Capital One, visit www.BuyPowerCard.com.