Back to School Essentials Check List

Posted on 23 Aug 2016 by Anna Scott
They’re the words you dread hearing in August, but putting off dealing with those back to school essentials won’t make them go away. Yes, it means being a bit organised and spending a bit of money, but if you’re clever you can save a few pounds here and there. To hopefully make the whole thing slightly less daunting we’ve put together a checklist of things you can, er, check. Just make sure you do all this more than a few days before term starts or you might find yourself in a bit of a pickle…

Our Top Picks for Back to School Savings

School Uniform

School uniformWe’ll start with the obvious, and first things first, just have a quick look to make sure you know what needs replacing and what doesn’t. It might be tempting to start with a clean slate school uniform-wise, and with growing children it’s inevitable that some things are going to have to be replaced, but there’s no need to go mad. The first few weeks of term are probably going to be reasonably mild, so there’s a good chance they can get away with the summer uniform they were wearing in July, but come the autumn, you might need to stock up some new long-sleeved shirts and warm trousers. Thankfully a lot of schools don’t demand you spend lots of money on shirts with hand-embroidered emblems these days, and Matalan promo codes can offer lots of good value options on the school uniform basics.


Tights and Socks: If you’re anything like us, these are probably the things you find you replace the most thanks to their uncanny ability to develop holes and snags after only a few wears. New school uniform may get most of your attention just before term starts, but make sure you give their sock drawer the quick once-over to see if you need to stock up that school sock and tights collection.


Name Tags: They never tell you how tiresome name tags are before you have children do they? Of course in an ideal world we’d sew them all in, but in these days we often find we don’t have the time for such tasks. However, many name tag companies offer a wide variety of options including iron-on name tags, but be aware that they might not stay in the clothes very well after a few washes. Our advice is to get sew on ones for those items that are much more likely to get misplaced, such as cardigans and jumpers, and use good quality iron-on tags for everything else - ordering them all online is by far the easiest option.


School Shoes

Clarks school shoesOne of the larger back to school expenses, but if you know your child’s shoe size, ordering online could prove a cheaper option, even with good quality shoe providers. For example, using Clarks promotional codes can not only save you money on that pair of school shoes, but they also have a current offer that gets you £5 off sports shoes when you buy a pair of children’s shoes – perfect if you need to get some shoes for gym classes too.


Winter Coats: Again, you might not need these straight away because of the weather, but it’s something you have to bear in mind. When budgeting, think about what you want from your kid’s winter cost – does it need to be waterproof? Is warmth your main priority? If they’ll be walking to school every day, you might need to invest in something that’s slightly better quality. To save a bit of money, check the online clearance sites of various department stores – these are the best places to pick up good quality bargains at any time of year.


There’s no getting around the fact that going back to school is expensive, but there’s no reason you have to buy absolutely everything they need for the school year at the end of August. Be realistic about what they actually require and spread those costs if you can.

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