Thanks to inflation, this back-to-school season has hit Americans’ budgets harder than usual as the prices of many commodities have increased.
“Back to school is one of the most expensive times of the year for families,” said founder and CEO of Very Informed, which aims to keep readers informed about products and services. Oberon Copeland said. “The cost of new clothes, equipment, tuition, etc., add up quickly.”
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According to the National Retail Federation, back-to-school spending has increased dramatically even before the pandemic began. Shoppers are expected to spend $168 more on average than he did in 2019, with total spending increasing by $11 billion.
However, Americans plan to spend only slightly more on back-to-school shopping this year than they did in 2021. Families with kids in grade school through high school plan to spend an average of $864 on school supplies, about $15 more than last year. , discovered by the National Retail Federation. But with higher prices, this means parents and students have to be smarter about how they spend their money.
GOBankingRates surveyed more than 1,000 Americans about their back-to-school shopping plans, and many reported that inflation is affecting how they spend their money this year. Here’s how shoppers are adjusting. Plus, the best way to really beat inflation when shopping for back-to-school.
How Inflation Affects Back-to-School Shoppers
Thirty-five percent of Americans surveyed who plan to do back-to-school shopping this year say inflation will make them look for deals and coupons more often. Other ways shoppers are coping with the effects of inflation include switching to cheaper alternatives (30%), buying more store brands than usual (13%), and shopping at discount stores (11%). ), including refraining from shopping elsewhere to cover school fees. Supplies (10%).
Moreover, many Americans will simply buy less. More than one in five said they would buy less clothing this year, and 19% said they would reuse equipment from previous years.
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The best way to fight inflation with back-to-school shopping
Very Informed’s Copeland believes the majority of back-to-school shoppers are on the right track by researching sales and coupons when it comes to battling skyrocketing costs this year.
“Many stores are offering deep discounts on back-to-school items in the weeks before the school year starts,” he said. “Many retailers also offer coupons that can be used on back-to-school items. These offers can help families save money on back-to-school shopping.”
Copeland also recommends buying second-hand. According to a GOBankingRates survey, only 5% of shoppers said they planned to make a purchase this year.
“You can often find second-hand items in good condition at consignment stores or online,” he said.
Brian Jones, CEO and founder of Best in Edmonton, a product and service review site, recommends checking your existing consumable inventory and reusing what you can.
“Parents often buy things for their children that they already have at home, such as pencils, paper, rulers, and coloring books,” he said. “Instead of spending money on things you may not need, consider using the resources you have at home.”
Jones also recommends spreading your purchases over time so you don’t have to go into debt.
“The first day of school doesn’t mean you have to buy everything your child will need for the entire school year,” he said. , purchase all other items as needed.”
Another tactic for saving on back-to-school needs is to compare products.
ThePricer CEO Alec Pow said: “Give yourself plenty of time shopping for school supplies, and broaden your search to multiple retailers, both online and in-store. pull out. [lowest] price. “
Trae Bodge, smart shopping expert at TrueTrae.com, recommends buying supplies in bulk.
“If you have a Sam’s Club, Costco, or BJ’s membership, now is the time to use it, because buying wholesale can be up to 40% cheaper than buying retail. ‘ she said. “The Wholesale Club should have a good inventory of items such as folders, pens, notebooks, etc. You may also find backpacks and apparel! Look for bulk pricing at membership-free online wholesale clubs such as Boxed.com.”
According to a GOBankingRates study, only 2% of back-to-school shoppers plan to purchase supplies at Costco, meaning many are missing out on this savings opportunity.
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