Back to School Shopping Plan

Nov 19, 2013 | Blog, Tips & How Tos

Start with a plan before you head out school shopping to save money and time. Cozi has partnered with Target to bring you a shopping plan and budget tips to make sure you get the right supplies at the best price.


School Supplies Shopping Checklist

  • Organize and assess the school supplies you have. It’s a great time to do a clean sweep of drawers and supply bins: Do you have old stores of post-its, sharpies, pencils and notebooks hiding somewhere?
  • Ask your classroom teacher or school if there is a classroom supplies list before you shop. Find out if it’s a recommended list or if parents are required to send students to school with certain items.
  • Find out if your state has a sales tax holiday and do the bulk of your shopping that day or week.
  • Shop dollar stores, discount bins or online for the best prices.
  • Team up with other parents to buy in bulk rather than each family paying individual prices. There are much better deals to be had when you buy bulk pencils, pens, folders and paper!
  • Rejuvenate an old, but still working backpack or lunchbox by adding patches or buttons from summer trips and camps.

School Clothes Shopping Checklist

  • Check the school’s dress code policy, especially if your child is starting at a new school this year.
  • Turn your kid’s room into a fitting room or have a fashion show. Find out what still fits and create a school wardrobe for late summer and early fall seasons. Recycle or donate the rest immediately to get the clutter out of the house!
  • Make a list of clothes needed to keep the closet stocked for the first couple months of school. Focus on the basics first like jeans and pants, shoes and cool-weather jackets.
  • Keep an eye out for off-season bargains on winter coats or even swimming trunks for next year. For more bargain-hunting ideas, check out our 5 Ways to Stock the Closet on a Budget.
  • If sales are hard to find, consider waiting until September or later to buy needed school clothes.
  • Decide how much you have to spend on back to school clothes. Put the cash in an envelope and pay from it and when it’s gone, it’s gone!

School Supplies Shopping Plan – Condensed for Download

Organize the school supplies you already have
Get the school supplies list from the school
Search for your state’s sales tax holiday
Shop dollar stores, discount bins or online for the best prices
Team up with other parents to buy in bulk
Rather than buy new, rejuvenate last year’s backpack and lunchbox
Check the school’s dress code policy
Have a fashion show to find out what still fits your kids
Make a list of basic clothes needed for the first couple months of school
Consider waiting until September or later to buy needed school clothes
Put the clothes budget in an envelope and pay from this stash


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