Back-to-School Shopping Deals

Claudia Lombana

Emmy & Peabody-Award Winning Journalist Claudia Lombana Shares Timely Tips for Helping Parents Prepare for School on a Budget

Going back to school used to be a simple matter of choosing pens, pencils and a lunchbox. Now, getting your kids ready for school is a multiple choice quiz for deciding the best technology, fashions and trends to help make a student successful. From K-12 and college, consumer expert Claudia Lombana knows the hottest new trends and money-saving ideas for the new school year.

Unique Back-To-School Idea

Upromise logoYou can save a lot of money by shopping smart online. If you go through a rewards site like by Sallie Mae you will be able to shop at most of your favorite stores, all while earning money towards your child’s college education. How smart is that? For every dollar you spend you earn 5% of that spending back for college. There are hundreds of major online retailers on the site such as Sears, Apple, Staples and Old Navy, or double that to 10% with the Upromise MasterCard.

The rewards program is free to join, easy to use and members have earned $750 million collectively in cash for college since the program began. It’s is free to join and all of your earnings can be invested in a tax-advantaged 529 college savings plan, deposited into a Sallie Mae High-Yield Savings Account.

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Hottest Styles for Kids

Sears logoEveryone needs jeans for Back to School.  Sears is all about the best denim brands with more than 1,000 styles and fits in the brightest colors that are popular with teens and kids.  Plus, busy parents and Shop Your Way members can complete their back to school shopping easier by taking advantage of Sears online, mobile and in-store features such as free store pick-up when you buy online and curbside pick-up.  It’s really convenient because you can finish your shopping without lugging bags around.  Simply text Sears when you arrive and an associate will bring your purchase out to the car.

Sears is also the first retailer to offer personalized eCoupons available and redeemable in-store, online and via a mobile device, so you can get the best deals no matter how you want to shop.

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Fun Back-to-School Suggestion

SodaStream logoOne fun idea for college bound students is the SodaStream Source transforms ordinary tap water into fizzy, great-tasting soda in less than 30 seconds. How fun and easy is that? Plus, it is a great way to save money when you’re on a college budget – one bottle of sodamix makes 33 cans of soda for only $4.99  – and also makes for a great space saving solution for those cramped dorm rooms. There are over 70 flavors to choose from – regular, diet, energy drinks, perfect for those “all-nighters”, and even NEW Kool-Aid!

SodaStream's BPA-free carbonating bottles are reusable for three years and can be taken anywhere; take them to class, the dining hall, the quad or anywhere you want. And with all the better-for-you (no HFCS or aspartame) flavor choices, you’ll never get bored. Try saying that about your classes!

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Back to School Technology Trend

ChromebookThe U.S. Census Bureau expects close to 80 million children and adults to head back to the classroom this year. Total school spending this year is targeted at over $70 billion with $8 billion for electronics. When shopping for tech items for your kids, remember that you can still get the quality you need without breaking the bank.  Taking the time to research different items can save you a lot of money.  For example, if you're looking for an easy-to-use, lightweight laptop, check out the Chromebook.  Chromebooks are a new type of computer designed to help you get things done faster and easier. They run Chrome OS, an operating system that has multiple layers of security, cloud storage, and the most popular Google products built-in.  It is inexpensive, starting at $199 and big names like Samsung, Acer and HP all offer models of the Chromebook.

Keeping Kids Healthy Throughout the School Year

NixBefore the kids go back to school it is important to re-stock your first aid kit. It’s essential to be prepared for everything.  For example, did you know that there are an estimated 12 million cases of head lice diagnosed each year in the U.S.?  Many of these cases occur in school age children. That is why I suggest stocking your first-aid kit with Nix® Complete Lice Elimination Kit. Nix® is the #1 pediatrician recommended treatment for killing lice and their eggs; it is the only lice treatment that protects against re-infestation for up to 14 days with a single application. Having this treatment on hand will help get your student back to school faster.

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