LOS ANGELES, CA--(Marketwire - August 26, 2010) -  The average American family will spend $606 on sending a child back to school this year, up 10.5% from previous years, according to The National Retail Federation. Use these tips from Savings.com, the premier destination for online coupons and coupon codes, and send kids back to school in style without draining the bank.

#1 Do Your Homework

  • Decide on a shopping budget (and stick to it).
  • Once you have a spending limit, make a list. Consider splitting it into two categories: essentials and extras.
  • Take stock of items left over from previous school years. Have any supplies gone unused?
  • Sign-up to receive sale e-mails from your favorite retailers, or follow them on Twitter where stores will often offer exclusive back to school deals just for subscribers.
  • Make a calendar of upcoming sale events nearby. August is a great time to save on school supplies like pens, pencils and notebooks, but for the best deals on clothing and shoes, wait for Labor Day sales.

#2 Pop Quiz

  • Which supplies should come from the college bookstore? A big box retailer? The dollar store?
    • The college bookstore is a great place to buy school apparel and gifts, and even supplies when crunched for time, but the convenience comes with a higher price tag.
    • Target and other big-box retailers are great for dorm room supplies, furniture, personal care items and more. These stores also often offer you online discounts and free shipping promotions.
    • Stick to the dollar store for items that need to be replaced on a regular basis: pens, pencils, erasers, scotch tape, etc.

#3 Earn Extra Credit By Shopping Online

  • Use online tools like PriceGrabber or mobile applications like RedLaser on most smartphones to find the lowest price available before deciding on any big-ticket items. After finding the retailer with the lowest price, search for additional savings opportunities like coupon codes and free shipping codes.
  • When moving a child to college, save money, hassle, and minimize time spent waiting in line by ordering home essentials from Target.com, which currently offers free shipping for home orders above $50. Similarly, order a semester's worth of personal care products from soap.com, and they'll ship the box directly to the dorm within 1-2 days for free.

#4 Work as a Team

  • Collective buying is all the rage this year. Team up with other parents, fellow students, or neighbors to buy supplies in bulk and save. Services like WePay let individuals easily collect payments for group purchases.
  • Use Savings.com's "Get Advice" tool to ask shopping questions and get answers from a community of spending experts, the DealPros®, and discover exclusive back to school deals that aren't published anywhere else.
  • Ask kids to contribute some of their own money or allowance to "extra" items that they consider must-haves.

#5 Pass the Super Saver Test

  • Stock up on next year's back to school supplies this fall when retailers start slashing prices to make room for Halloween merchandise.
  • Consignment stores are a great place to get money for the clothes kids have outgrown. Sellers can choose to receive a greater percentage of the clothes' value in store credit and then pick up new threads at the same time. Use online tools like thredUP, a kids' clothing swap website that allows parents to exchange outgrown clothing.

To save big for back to school and during the upcoming holiday season, always research the Web to find promotions and discounts on apparel, accessories, technology and gifts. With top deals from more than 800 well-known popular brands and more than 5,000 individual merchants, Savings.com is the go-to resource for every savvy shopper looking to stretch his or her budget. For more savings tips, check out the Savings.com personal finance blog, Blog & Save.

About Savings.com
Savings.com helps consumers save money every day. The premier online savings Web site and community has the best deals for everything shoppers want, making it easier than ever to search, find and share big savings from top brands and stores. The company's dedicated team of DealPros scours the Web to find top offers in every category from designer clothes and baby gear to big-screen TVs and gourmet food. The site's community of members and savers rate each deal to make sure users find the best stuff first, eliminating the need to spend time sifting through expired coupons and coupon codes that don't work. Savings.com is a safe haven of high-quality, reliable deals. Savings.com's sister site, Savoo.co.uk, offers top coupons and deals to UK-based shoppers.

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