Back to school shopping on a budget - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Back to school shopping on a budget

This weekend would have been the tax-free holiday, a chance to save some money on last minute back to school items. (Source: WALB) This weekend would have been the tax-free holiday, a chance to save some money on last minute back to school items. (Source: WALB)
We talked to a professional couponer to find out how you can still save on back-to-school shopping. (Source: WALB) We talked to a professional couponer to find out how you can still save on back-to-school shopping. (Source: WALB)
Crystal Stewart teaches couponing classes at the Dougherty County Library. (Source: WALB) Crystal Stewart teaches couponing classes at the Dougherty County Library. (Source: WALB)
ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

This weekend would have been the tax-free holiday, a chance to save some money on last minute back to school items.

However, state leaders voted against that legislation this year.

We talked to a professional couponer to find out how you can still save on back-to-school shopping.

Shopping for back to school essentials can quickly add up.

The National Retail Federation estimates families will spend an average of nearly $700 this year on back-to-school shopping.

So how can families cut costs?

We decided to ask an expert.

Crystal Stewart is a mother of three. She knows how important it is to budget and save money.

She teaches couponing classes at the Dougherty County Library. While she doesn't consider herself an extreme couponer..she's collected an impressive stockpile in the past few years.

"Some of the croutons and different rice, are all items that were free," said Stewart.

She says the first step to saving money on back-to-school shopping starts before you even leave the house. Look around and see what you already have.

"Of course we usually already have a ton of pencils, pens and things like that, and that's something that you can use that money towards something else," said Stewart.

Make a list, and check it twice. That way you get exactly what you and avoid overspending.

And her favorite tip - always use a coupon. Search online on sites like RetailMeNot, and sign up for every customer rewards program you can. That way stores will send you coupons right to your phone or your inbox.

"Just go to that company's website, that company's website. Or you can even call the 1-800-number to see what it takes to receive those emails," said Stewart.

Sound advice that can keep a little extra cash in your wallet this school year.

Stewart put together a list of all those tips and more that you can take with you during your shopping trip:

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