By the numbers: Families to spend $674 on back to school shopping

By the numbers: Families to spend $674 on back to school shopping
(Source: Nichole Cartmell/KFVS)
(Source: Nichole Cartmell/KFVS)

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - There is not much that compares to the winter holiday shopping season, except buying back to school items.

Shopping for school supplies, including your child's class list, new clothes, shoes, electronics, makes up the second biggest season for consumer spending.

According to the National Retail Federation, total spending this year is expected to reach $75.8 billion.

Here's a closer look at the numbers per family:

  • The average family will spend about $673.57 on apparel, accessories, electronics, shoes and school supplies. That's up from $630.36 in 2015.
  • 65 percent of the money will be spent on clothes and electronics. Parents plan to spend an average of $235.39 on clothing, and $204.06 on electronics.
  • Parents say they will spend on average about $107.76 on school supplies alone.

Good news: The National Retail Federation said, "We fully expect retailers to be aggressive with offering great deals both in stores and online for back to school shoppers."

Bethany Byrd is sending two kids back to school this year. Her youngest is going into first grade and her oldest will start in the eighth grade in the fall.

"We have seven years between them so one is starting first grade and one's starting eighth," Byrd said. "So we are on two totally ends of the spectrum on school supplies."

She is fully aware of the back to school spending struggle.

"That just goes with it the more kids you have the higher the price tag you pay and if you want the really cute stuff then it gets even higher," Byrd said.

By the end of her first shopping trip, Byrd said her total for just one middle school student was $126.

"That's not buying the backpack yet or the new outfit for the first day of school or the new shoes," Byrd explained.

She estimated they would spend about $300 in total for both kids.

The National Retail Federation said more Millennial families have kids in school, which is boosting total back-to-school spending to near-record levels.

If you still have more back to school shopping to do, there are some ways to save. The best part is that you can do a lot of it from your phone.

  • Find the best sales using the app Zoomingo. It finds deals at stores like Walmart, Kohls, Staples, and Target.
  • Use the app called 'The Coupon App' to find coupons you can use on sale items.
  • Buy in Bulk on Amazon. Stash the extras away for later in the year. Plus, if you spend more than $25, you can get free shipping right to your door.

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