‘Tis the season … for back-to-school shopping and the stress that may come with it.

In 2021, the National Retail Federation reported an increase in back-to-school spending for elementary to high school students, with parents spending an average of $848.90, up from the previous year of $789.49. If you have children on their way to college, the NRF estimates you’ll spend $1,200.32 on college or university supplies, up from the previous $1,059.20.

Back-to-school spending was expected to reach $37.1 billion in 2021, while back-to-college spending may have reached $71 billion.

You can take some of the stress out of back-to-school supply shopping and your bank account this season. There are ways you can avoid spending too much for the new school year. Keep in mind sales start early, so plan ahead.

Here are some ways you can save money and reduce your stress before the school year begins.

  • Take an inventory: See what your child already owns. There may be unused notebooks, pens, markers, and rulers hiding in a drawer or in your child’s backpack.
  • Try on last year’s clothing: Make a list of what clothing needs to be replaced.
  • Compare prices online and in flyers: Before heading out to shop, see which stores have price match policies and which are running the best deals.
  • Check with the school: Refer to your child’s school or supply list before buying any high-priced items such as computers and calculators. They may be required supplies.
  • Buy backpacks with the right fit: Buy the right backpack to help prevent injuries and joint problems. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, look for backpacks with wide, padded shoulder straps and a padded back. You can even invest in a rolling backpack if your child normally has a heavy load.
  • Use your smartphone apps: Scan bar codes to see if you’re getting a good deal.
  • Buy for durability: Buy sturdier folders and binders so your child can reuse them the next year.
  • Spread out your purchases: Instead of buying all your child’s supplies at once, buy their school supplies in waves. It may help save money.
  • Split bulk deals: If you have several children in school at the same time, split the bulk supplies between all the kids. You could even split supplies with other parents to save money.
  • Wait it out: Once school starts, school supplies may become cheaper. Hold off until then for possibly better deals.

The information in this article was obtained from various sources not associated with Adirondack Bank. While we believe it to be reliable and accurate, we do not warrant the accuracy or reliability of the information. Adirondack Bank is not responsible for, and does not endorse or approve, either implicitly or explicitly, the information provided or the content of any third-party sites that might be hyperlinked from this page. The information is not intended to replace manuals, instructions or information provided by a manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional, or to affect coverage under any applicable insurance policy. These suggestions are not a complete list of every loss control measure. Adirondack Bank makes no guarantees of results from use of this information.