As all budgeting college students know, back-to-school sales are important life savers to our dwindling bank accounts and rising credit card payments, but what happens when they are ill-timed and not advertised?
Are students, teachers, and parents alike being duped? I thought an article on back-to-school sales would benefit both students and local businesses, but when I started calling around to local businesses I began finding out most of the school sales had ended weeks ago. Most of them ended before Labor Day sales had even began being advertised, and some well before students had moved into the dorms.
Most students realize the moment they step through the threshold of their new dorm room they forgot to pack something. The mad scramble begins to find what they forgot, coax and ether net cables, extra-long bed sheets, power strips, and extra storage are all things you soon realize you need ASAP.
After gas money, paying for books, and the daunting tuition payment soon due, your wallet is crying and you want to find the best deal. You go to the local big box store to find the things you need readily on display (if not already sold out), but the prices are nowhere near the advertised sales you saw on TV. Confused, you ask a salesperson about the sales only to find out they ended at the beginning of August, well before you got into town. A thought hits you that your local store should have had the same deals when you were shopping for dorm swag, but they didn’t. You inquire about that and are informed that you only get the sales if you show the cashier your student ID, if either of you remember about that addendum that is. Suddenly this back-to-school sale stuff has become really difficult.
With the sales ending early, not advertised at all, or making you jump through hoops to get your 10% discount or whathaveyou, how are we supposed to get these savings? Businesses are missing out on prime time sales, because we all know that having to wait a few extra days to watch TV because we saved money getting the cable we needed online, is better than paying ridiculous store prices for instant results.
Back-to-school sales are long gone by the time you are reading this. Though some stores offer year-round deals for teachers, and it never hurts to ask your local big box stores like Walmart, K-Mart, or Shopko about student discounts. It seems the only way to catch these slippery sales is lots of research and planning. Better luck next year!