Back To School Chalk Board

Back to School, Online Shopping Tips

Last Minute Back to School Shopping Tips

It happens to the best of us every year: the last couple of weeks before school resumes creep up behind us and yells, “Surprise! Time to complete mountains of tasks and preparation!” We go into panic mode and think, “How in the world am I going to get this done in time?”

Before you head into a frenzy, just remember we now live in the beautiful digital world full of online hacks, and shortcuts that could pretty much solve anything!

There are so many amazing resources to help you get your shopping and preparation tasks done quickly and efficiently while remaining well within your budget (like the PriceReel Blog :P). Below are some super helpful tips that will help you get organized and prepared for back-to-school shopping.


Relax and have a good night sleep 

You’ve got a big day tomorrow; it’s the start of your back to school preparation! If you’re feeling overwhelmed or frazzled at the idea of how much work you need to do, give yourself some down time to relax and have a good night sleep. Having a well rested mind and body will help you gain more energy, put you in better spirits, and help you knock those tasks off your list.

Do an inventory

This task is an excellent start to see what your child needs, and what to throw out. Go through all your children’s clothes, shoes, outerwear, and school supplies from last year. For clothes, make a pile for what fits, and one for what doesn’t. For the clothing that doesn’t fit, put them in a bag for donation or to sell later. Next, begin making a master list of the things your child needs, include the following sections:

  • Clothes/Shoes
  • School Supplies (only generic items such as lined paper, pencils, pens, erasers, etc. Wait until the teacher sends home a detailed list with your child on the first day)
  • Extracurricular Items – I.e. sports uniforms and shoes, dance customs, musical instrument accessories, etc.


Raid the fridge 

Check your fridge, freezer, and pantry. Throw out items that are no good or expired. Have any non-perishable items your family doesn’t like? Set them aside for a food drive later. Make a list of possible meals you could make with the items you already have.

Open Refrigerator

Check your weekly flyers or flyer app 

See what’s on sale at the supermarket closest to you and brainstorm meal ideas of the sales items. Make a list of all the items you need and cross-reference it to the items you already have in the fridge, freezer, and pantry.

Compile your lists and let the shopping games begin!

The key to a successful shopping trip is finding stores that have almost everything on your lists. Stores like Walmart have a produce/grocery section, as well as sections for school supplies and clothing. If these types of stores aren’t available, try finding plazas or malls that have all the stores you’re looking for so you can get your shopping done in one trip (saving money on gas and time).Mom Grocery Shopping

Stick to that list!

As tempting it is to pick up things on sale that you may need for later, remember, you have a budget to stick too! Jot those items down as you shop. If you find you have some extra dollars left over, then splurge on!

Focus on finding the best price for the most expensive items on your list 

Since you’re in a bit of time crunch, focus on finding the best prices for more expensive items such as computers, cell phones, and shoes. Make a list of stores in the mall or plazas you intend on visiting. If you have an idea of the specific items, have a quick search on PriceReel and compare prices among various stores to see which one is the best. Keep in mind shipping delivery dates, costs and distance of the store – these are all factors that affect price! **Pro Tip – If you haven’t subscribed up to your favorite stores’ email lists, do it! They typically send you 10-20% off or free shipping promo codes among you first purchase.


Get your kids involved  

Kids tend to pressure parents into going on an all-out shopping spree for clothes and supplies. But a little compromise can go a long way. Take your kids shopping and let them pick out their outfit for the first day or two of school. Set rules such as:

  1. Does it meet the school’s dress code?
  2. Does suit the weather?
  3. Does it stay within the budget?

This way, the clothes and shoes you bought won’t end up being stuffed in the back of the closet, the arguments are minimized, and most importantly they are happy!

Now for the most important part: relaxation! Yes, after all that hard work it’s time grab yourself a nice fancy beverage or a tub of Häagen-Dazs ice cream and just relax. Reflect on your accomplishments, because they are great ones! Next year’s back to school prep will be even more of a breeze!

Don’t forget to check back into PriceReel’s Blog for up to date shopping news, tips, reviews and so much more, new posts every Wednesday!


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