David Bakke is a contributor for MoneyCrashers.com, a personal finance blog that shares tips and tricks for money management, banking, investing, retirement planning and more.
A supposed win-win for retailers and consumers alike, Back-to-School Saturday has been created to draw crowds this year. It’s tailored along the lines of Black Friday — but do the potential savings measure up to that famed sales day?
The short answer is no, but there are a few deals to be had for consumers willing to look and not just get taken in by the hype.
Back to School Saturday Deals Worth Your Time
Back-to-School Saturday has been designated as August 11th by the website, Teen Vogue. This is timed fairly well, as most back-to-school sales also occur that weekend. Discounts aren’t steep, but can reduce your spending bill if you focus on the more affordable retailers — or if you were already planning to shop at trendier, pricier stores. A few deals to take advantage of include:
- Staples is offering a Back-to-School savings pass. The pass costs $10 and is good for 15% off all school items through September 15th.
- Kohl’s is offering 20% off in-store and online purchases on August 11th only. Considering that Kohl’s tends to have good pricing across the board, this is a deal worth taking advantage of.
- Gap is offering 30% off in-store or online purchases from August 9th through August 12th.
These are a few of the better deals on popular brands:
- Aeropostale is offering 30% off purchases, plus a free pair of sunglasses.
- Guess is offering 20% off in-store and online purchases.
- American Apparel also is offering 20% off in-store and online purchases.
Teen Vogue has a complete list of discounts available.
Better Ways to Save on Back to School Shopping
Despite the available deals, there are even better ways to save than just participating in Back-to-School Saturday. The best ways start with being prudent about how much you should spend and what you actually need to purchase.
Start by going through closets and drawers for clothes that still fit and have plenty of wear left. Also, instead of waiting until the end of summer to shop, look for deals all summer long. Peruse stores like Ross, TJ Maxx and Marshalls for discounts on name brand clothes that often exceed 30 percent. You might even consider large thrift stores near high-end neighborhoods. Shopping at thrift stores can be like treasure hunting; depending on where you live, you can find designer clothes in good shape for mere dollars.
Also, don’t purchase new backpacks and lunch boxes until shortly after the school year begins — that’s when they typically go on clearance. To get back-to-school clothes for free, consider holding a clothing swap with your friends and neighbors who have children. You can also trade in your outgrown clothes for cash or store credit at consignment shops, such as Plato’s Closet and Buffalo Exchange.
Download the Teen Vogue Insider app to see if new deals are added for your child’s favorite store. But don’t simply assume you’re getting a good deal on Back-to-School Saturday because the retailer says you are. Follow the tips above to make the most of the best deals, and remember, your kids don’t have to have the trendiest wardrobe in school, no matter what they say. A few name brand pieces can be a nice perk, but are not worth breaking the bank for.
What are your thoughts on Back-to-School Saturday?