It’s that time of year again. Booklist in hand, school fees are due, new shoes, bags and uniforms are needed for the kids. This time of the year is high spend for us; not only for back to school but our car and house insurance policies are also up for renewal.

We created a plan for June to September to ensure that we can cash flow all back to school expenses and renew our policies without compromising additional debt payments.

Here are a few things we put in place to save and get ready for back to school (BTS)

Budget – hahaha you knew this was coming. We created a separate spreadsheet showing all possible items needed for BTS. I called around and got prices to calculate our total cost. We added a BTS category to the budget and put a set amount for each month.

Start shopping early – Trying to purchase all items in one particular month could put a serious dent in our pockets. Our household still needs to run and our plan is to prioritize and schedule. We broke down our list into 3 months and by order of priority, for e.g. we put uniforms, textbooks and shoes first and hair cuts, school meals fees etc in the last month.

Discounts – I’m sure you have already seen the discounts being promoted by stores on back to school supplies. I’ve always been a subscriber of “Marketplace Today” to receive emails on all types of deals. Early back to school discount have been flying around since the end of June. We also like to save money by shopping online and asking a close friend coming back to Barbados to bring them. Shoes and bags = ✅

Use what you have – A new school year does not automatically mean new school things. They are a few items that are in good condition and will be reused. Also having lots of kids mean ‘hand me downs’. Our son will be using 5 of his sister’s books from Class 3, one of those books alone cost $76 🤯🤑. We still have tons of pencils and our daughter received great graduation gifts such as pencil case, calculator and other useful items.

BTS expenses are no joke but the 3P’s (proper planning and preparation) makes it easier to manage.

Our Back to School Plan

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