Stretch Your Dollar: Back to School backpack advice and savings

(WTNH/Jacquie Slater)

(WTNH) — One of the most expensive items you’ll buy for your child this “back to school” season, is a backpack; and we’re stretching your dollar so you don’t overspend on something your child doesn’t necessarily need.

Clothing, gadgets, and classroom supplies. Yes, back to shopping is in full swing, and the one item at the top of many lists this year, the backpack to carry all of this stuff.

Backpacks come in all shapes and sizes and a range of price tags. New London Staples General Manager Jennifer Gaskell showed us how to be a savvy shopper.

Related Content: Stretch Your Dollar: Tips for saving on back to school supplies

“The first thing is you’ve got to make sure it fits properly,” Gaskell said. “It should fit comfortably high on your child’s back, with enough pockets to disperse the weight evenly.”

The real inexpensive bag may not last for students with heavy books in junior high and older. You may find yourself replacing it before the school year’s over. Look for padding for students who regularly carry electronics.

“The padding is kind of geared to keep the laptop safe,” said Gaskell. “As long as they decide they want to start carrying their tablet or notebook. So once someone decides they want to keep their table or notebook, they want to look for something a bit more durable and more quality focused.”

Related Content: Stretch Your Dollar: Protecting your electronic devices

Once you have your bag, Gaskell says to look for savings on supplies in fliers. Each week they feature different sales.

“We have a lot of items that are 50 cents, a dollar, two dollars, three dollars; so every week it varies.”

Start early, and monitor specials to stretch your dollar the furthest. You may find you spend less if you leave the kids home. They’re mostly drawn to colors and characters that typically cost more than generics.

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