Savvy Back to School Shopping

August 12, 2014


Summer will be over and school will be starting again before we know it. Now’s the time to take advantage of annual back to school specials on supplies. Whether you plan to shop at your favorite retail store or look around your home, BBB recommends sticking to a budget to avoid the common overspending on school supplies.

Many retailers offer back to school deals to entice shoppers. Coupons, deals and giveaways are nice, but make sure you actually need the items first. There’s no need to spend money on new crayons, pencils and notebooks if all it takes is organizing what you already have.

BBB recommends the following when back to school shopping

Take inventory. There’s always that supply of markers, crayons and notebooks around the house. Re-using these items can save hundreds of dollars over the years. Consider re-packaging, sharpening and cleaning out older items before buying new ones.

Look for deals. Some retailer specials are available in-store or online. Also check out your local newspaper. Shop sooner rather than later to get the pieces on sale before they are sold out.

Set a budget. Decide how much you’re willing to spend per child and include a teachable moment for your children on creating that budget. Take an inventory, create a shopping list and stick to it. This should help you avoid costly impulse purchases.

Check refund and exchange policies. Be sure you can exchange or return items during back to school shopping. Keep in mind some items may be non-refundable or have re-stocking fees.

By following these tips, you should be able to get all your back to school needs while maintain financial stability.

For more consumer tips you can trust, visit


 Consumer tips and media releases can also be found on our Homepage, Blog and News Centre. Please feel free to subscribe to our RSS feed to receive BBB news at your computer. We also have a Facebook Fan Page and you can follow us on Twitter.

As the leader in advancing marketplace trust, Better Business Bureau of Central and Northern Alberta is an unbiased non-profit organization that sets and upholds high standards for fair and honest business behavior. Every year, more than 65 million consumers rely on BBB Business Reviews to help them find trustworthy businesses across North America. Visit for more information.