Ways To Save on Back To School Shopping

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Ways To Save on Back To School Shopping
by: Rachel Harris, Managedmoms.com

For a lot of parents this time of year can be costly with back to school supplies, shoes and clothing needed to start another school year.  So I did some research to see how to save when it comes to those shopping trips that add up fast.  Here is what I came up with....

Ways To Save:

*Sign up for text alerts --
Payless shoes offers frequent discounts when you sign up for their text alerts.  Last week I received a text offer that gave me an extra 15% off of my purchase.  To sign up for Payless text coupons, text the word "SHOES" or "PAYLESS" to 747474. Standard text messaging rates may apply.  With this discount, I was able to get my tween two pairs of back to school shoes for under $20.
JC Penney also texted me a 15% off text coupon for back to school clothing.  Since I signed up, I have been receiving weekly coupons.  Just text JCP to 527-365 to receive alerts and coupons. Standard text messaging rates may apply.

*Cool Savings Apps --
If you haven't heard of retailmenot, you have to know about this cool and free app that sends coupons that can be redeemed at a variety of stores right to your phone.  A good example is Hobby Lobby.  Whenever I go there, I enter Hobby Lobby into my retailmenot app and I almost always receive a 40% off coupon and that is a significant savings.  I love this free app.
Cartwheel by Target is a cool free app that enables Target customers to choose from hundreds of offers from every category and new offers are added regularly.  When you arrive at the store (or shop online at www.target.com) check the different product categories on your app to see which items offer barcode discounts.  Select those items and then at checkout, show your phone Cartwheel app to the cashier and they will scan your barcode to get the savings.  For example, I went to Target and purchased a Yoobi bottle of glue.  After I scanned the barcode with the Cartwheel app on my phone, the cashier scanned my phone at the register and I received a 10% discount.  Pretty cool.  Yoobi is also an excellent brand to purchase because for every Yoobi school supply you buy at Target, Yoobi gives the same supply to a classroom in need and this give back program helps schools all over the nation.

*Get on Email Lists --
Go to www.kohls.com and enter in your email address to receive sale alerts and coupons.  The day after I signed up, I received a coupon in my email for an extra 15% off my next purchase in store or online.  Most big chain stores offer something similar when you get on their email list.

Specific Store Savings:

JC Penney --
*JC Penney will host a 3 day sale from July 31-Aug. 2nd.  
*JC Penney will offer door busters this Friday, August 1st from 3pm to close and on Saturday from 9am to 1pm along with big buys throughout the weekend.  JC Penney corporate emailed that some of the deals will include:
•    $4.99 door buster deal for guy's graphic tees
•    $4.99 boys and girls Okie Dokie match-ups
•    $9.99 door buster deal for Juniors shorts and Bermudas
•    $14.99 door buster deal for Arizona girls and boys denim
•    $19.99 for select Arizona backpacks
•    40 percent off all Juniors fashion jewelry
•    40-50 percent off select styles of boys and girls Xersion activewear   
*Get your hair cut and your glasses at JC Penney, too.  Through September 6th, JC Penney is offering $10 haircuts and $29.99 select eyeglasses for kids.
*For Mom!  Mom is also eligible for a fall mini makeover with a $25 “Just For Mom” JCP salon deal that includes a deep conditioning, hair blowout and eyebrow wax.
JC Penney also has a Dorm Life section with significant savings on bedding and more.  For example, they have a nice selection of  twin XL sheet sets are marked down from $35 to $16.99 and some come in some really fun prints.  Go to www.jcpenny.com to see the online specials for dorm life items.

Sign up for the free Walgreens Balance Rewards card to receive significant savings on back to school items now through September 13th.  Some of the great deals include...
*Papermate Mechanical Pencil (5 pencils and 1 pen) on sale for 99 cents marked down from $4.29 with the Balance Rewards card.
*Ticonderoga 24 set of #2 pencils on sale for $2.49 marked down from $6.49 with the Balance Rewards card.
*Wexford 7 inch student scissors on sale for $2.99 down from $6.49 with the Balance Rewards card.
*Wexford College Ruled 5 Subject Notebook on sale for 99 cents marked down from $3.79 with Balance Rewards card.
*Heavy Duty View Binder marked down to $1.99 from $6.79 with Balance Rewards card.
Also my daughter tells me that middle school students love the Wexford Mini Highlighter and they are on sale at Walgreens for 39 cents down 10 cents with the card.

First of all definitely check the money savings Cartwheel app that I described earlier in this article for a savings on a variety of back to school products that are sold at Target.  Also while shopping at Target, you will notice signs that ask you to text a word like TARGET to receive coupons directly to your phone.  I did that and I saved $5 at checkout and the woman who was behind me in the line told me that she likes the text savings and uses that frequently.  Here are some discounts, that I'm told by Target, are offered this week through Saturday, August 2nd.
 •         In-store and Target.com
o   $10 Denim/$5 Tees
 •         Target.com only this week:
o   $5 Uniform Polos, $10 Uniform Pants
o   Spend $50, save ten percent on all regular apparel

OfficeMax/Office Depot
OfficeMax and Office Depot will both offer a variety of back to school items that sell for only 1 cent.  A penny for a back to school product is hard to beat.  Customers do need to purchase a minimum of $5 worth of products to get the penny deals.  I went to OfficeMax and bought a backpack that is marked down 50% for a back to school sale, so the $39.99 back pack only cost me $19.99 and then I only paid 3 cents for three one subject notebooks.  The backpack sale is happening through this Saturday, August 2nd.  The maximum penny items you can buy is three in one day, so that is why I purchased three of the notebooks.  So I was able to buy a back pack and three notebooks for only $23.  The one subject notebooks are the penny deal this week.  OfficeMax and Office Depot will have weekly penny deals on different school supplies each week, so check the OfficeMax/Office Depot insert in the Sunday paper to see what the week's penny deals are for the week ahead.

Payless Shoes:

*At select Payless stores, go to Payless on August 5th through August 25th and receive a $10 coupon off a $30 purchase that can then be used during the week of August 27th through September 2nd.  I was told by Payless that not all of the locations are offering this deal, so check with your local Payless store before you go to be sure that the coupon is being offered at that specific location.

Also sign up for their text alerts, as I mentioned earlier in the article, because since I did I have been receiving weekly text coupons.  

Do you know of a good back to school deal that I didn't cover in this article?  Share here in the comments section so we can all share in the savings.  Remember to check my blog at www.managedmoms.com for more back to school articles, recipes, pet stuff and more.  Make it a great school year!