Back-to-school shopping has always elicited such excitement in me since I was a child. Now, as a parent on the other side of the experience, I want to foster the same excitement in my children while keeping our family budget in mind.

Ibotta’s Back to School FREE for All bargains gave me 100% cashback for back to school supplies this year, and you can get the same excellent deals* from July 14th until the end of August 2021.The epidemic altered our shopping habits, our children’s school attendance, and, yes, our school shopping habits. However, a new study from NerdWallet suggests that school-aged children and their parents are returning to normalcy in at least a few respects.

According to an online survey of 619 parents with children in K-12 or college conducted by The Harris Poll on behalf of NerdWallet recently, nearly three-quarters (76%) of parents with children in K-12 or college who plan to do back-to-school shopping this year say they will do at least some of their shopping in-store. In comparison, only 56% did so last year.

Another noteworthy shift: 56% of these back-to-school shopping parents estimate they’ll spend the most on clothing, up from 31% in 2020, when remote learning meant wardrobes were likely low on the priority list. And, compared to last year, 21% said they’ll spend the most on things to keep their child healthy, such as masks and hand sanitizer.

Even with the pandemic, about half (49%) of parents who plan to purchase for back-to-school say they expect to spend about the same this year as they typically would. However, there are always methods to save money.

Compare prices before and after you shop

Comparing similar things at multiple places and asking a retailer to match a lower price is what price matching is all about. A good price match might save you tens of dollars, if not hundreds of dollars, on clothing, electronics, and other higher-dollar items.

Check a retailer’s website for information on its price-matching policy. Many companies will also reimburse the difference in price if you find a lower price within a specific time frame after making your purchase.

Use credit card perks to your advantage

According to the survey, more than half of parents (55 percent) plan to use a credit card for part of their back-to-school shopping this year. Paying your expenses with a cash-back credit card could make your money work for you.

You might even make enough money to cover all of next year’s back-to-school expenses. Make sure you pay off the balance each cycle because interest can quickly wipe out any savings.

Buy in bulk

Whether your child is learning remotely or in-person this autumn, they will want resources that are equally sought after by other students. You may save money on things like hand sanitizer and aids for homework and note-taking by banding together with other parents. If your child’s teacher is hesitant to provide parents’ contact information, request that they send yours in a group email so that other parents can contact you if they’re interested in group discounts.

You can also buy in bulk for yourself and store the items for later use. Students frequently require materials such as glue sticks, paper, scissors, and markers for work at home, so if you can buy in bulk at a discount, the savings can add up over the course of the school year.Palmer adds.

Shop on tax-free holidays

In August 2021, seventeen states will have sales tax holidays. The majority of them endure at least a weekend, and some considerably longer. To take advantage of the tax-free benefits, retailers that provide online purchasing for in-store pickup may ask you to order and pick up on those specific days. Each state’s holiday is different, but it generally allows you to buy some back-to-school items without paying sales tax.

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