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Parents save money on back-to-school shopping

Back-to-school supplies

Parents are scouring different stores in the CSRA to find the best back-to-school deals. (WRDW-TV / Aug. 1, 2011)

News 12 This Morning / Monday, August 1, 2011

AIKEN, S.C. -- On Wednesday, the first round of students from McCormick, Jefferson and Burke counties go back to school. If back-to-school shopping is still on your to-do list, savvy shoppers say not to wait.

It's the season for notebooks and filler paper. Moms and dads navigate the aisles with a close eye to grab the best deals.

"I think back-to-school shopping is kind of fun," said Stephanie Martin, a mother shopping for her three kids.

Martin had a plan of action before even stepping foot inside the store.

"Me and my daughter sat down yesterday through the sales ad. We looked and said, 'OK, what do we need on the list, what do we have coupons for?'" Martin said.

Brian Prince, a Staples store general manager, said that if you procrastinate back-to-school shopping, you may not be able to find the deals.

At office supply stores like Staples, the shelves are overflowing with back-to-school basics.

"For the average student you're looking at probably $60 to $100 bucks," Prince said.

There is also a lot to choose from. Stores are stocked with fancy erasers, calculators that are designed to fold up and even leopard-print duck tape so students can decorate their notebooks.

The flashy fads can add up quickly. Martin ended up spending less than her budgeted $150 on all three kids by using a few coupons. Her final total was $133.

Stores also recommend signing up for their loyalty cards to save anywhere from 10 to 15 percent on your trip.

"We do a lot of emails to our rewards customers with coupons," Prince said.

For the parents still procrastinating, Martin says to make a trip as soon as possible.

"The shelves are gonna go empty, prices are may go up, stuff will not be available," she said.

South Carolina will have a tax-free weekend starting Aug. 5. Shoppers can skip the state's 6 percent sales tax starting 12:01 a.m. Friday. Georgia will not have a tax-free weekend this year.

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