Ways to Save for Back to School

As we finish out the first full week in September, we start to get back in the swing of school season.  Students grudgingly accept that summer is over and start to complete homework assignments as parents let out sighs of relief that their homes are no longer trashed by the time they get home from work.

Back to school can be an expensive time of year, with new school supplies, clothes, and miscellaneous costs that pile up.  Luckily for you, we have compiled some tips on how to cut back on unnecessary costs.

  • Pack your child’s lunch instead of giving them money for school lunch.  Even if the lunch at your child’s school is only $2 per day, that’s $360 per school year that you are spending on food.  Take a few moments before the start of each school week to plan out lunches with your child.  You can find ideas for school lunches on our Back to School Pinterest board, or pack leftovers from dinner the night before.
  • Back to school clothes can be a nightmare to shop for.  Instead of hitting the mall or department stores, try shopping at thrift stores for clothing.  Your children may object at first, but you can find some great deals if you look hard enough.  Thrift stores are also a great option for older students who like buying their own clothes or have a unique sense of fashion.  There are many thrift stores in Central Wisconsin, so this is perfect for back to school season.
  • If you or your child is a college student, browse the Internet or ask former students to borrow textbooks.  College textbooks can cost hefty chunks of change, so buying used books or borrowing from others can save substantial amounts of cash.
  • Ask other parents if they would like to carpool.  Gas prices only seem to go up, so carpooling can save you gas money.  You can carpool students to and from school and sporting events, but parents can also carpool to school events to save gas.

How do you cut costs around back to school time?  What is the most difficult part about getting back in to school mode and how do you work through that?

Here’s hoping all students and parents have a great school year!


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