The 5 Best Places to Buy School Supplies in 2023

Expect certain retailers to offer Back to School items starting at 40 cents or less.
Teenager shops for school supplies.

Back to School season is upon us! With prices still running on the higher end, many families are looking to find the best places to shop to stay within their budgets. One easy way to accomplish this feat is to know where to buy school supplies in the first place.

We've rounded up the top stores that help shoppers tackle this annual tradition without having to sacrifice too much cash. Check out our guide below on the best places to buy school supplies in 2023, as well as what kinds of deals you can expect. Then check out our articles on Back to School sales and the best school supplies to buy to get more shopping tips.

The 5 Best Places to Buy School Supplies in 2023

Our infographic covers the top stores for big Back to School savings and items to shop at each. After you take a look, read on to learn more about where to buy school supplies.

Top stores for Back to School shopping shown in infographic.

1. Amazon

Best for: Backpacks, cleaning products, school supplies

Amazon sells pretty much anything you can think of. So it should come as no surprise that the online retailer is one of the top places to buy school supplies. But just because it sells a variety of items doesn't mean you'll find good deals on everything on your supply list. However, it still pays to utilize your Prime account when shopping categories such as backpacks, cleaning items, and traditional school supplies.

SEE ALSO: Back to School Sales for 2023 Are Live! Here Are the Top Deals

For instance, in August 2022, Amazon featured the following discounts:

  • Up to 38% off writing and correction supplies
  • Up to 50% off BIC writing instruments
  • Up to 43% off Arteza art and office supplies
  • Up to 54% off Crayola products
  • Up to 57% off Pilot pens and Rocketbook notebooks
This year, there's a good chance we'll see general offers like $10 off $30 office supply purchases, too.

It's not just school supplies you can save on either. Amazon is also a good option if you're looking for backpacks; the retailer knocked up to 62% off these items last year. It's also worth checking out the cleaning products on offer, as well, and stocking up now may help to stave off illness when cold and flu season really kicks in. In fact, this summer we've already seen Amazon take up to 42% off select Purell products.

2. Best Buy

Best for: Laptops

You might not think of Best Buy when contemplating Back to School shopping, but it's a great place to look for tech deals around this time of year. From laptops and printers to accessories and even bags to safeguard those pricey devices, you can find a good bit of what you need at Best Buy.

Staples might not be on your Back to School radar, but it should be! They offer supplies for as little as 40 cents each and bonus savings via coupons.

Last August, Best Buy offered a Lenovo Chromebook for just $99, an HP 14" laptop with an AMD Ryzen 3 processor for $200, a refurbished Microsoft Surface Pro 7 128GB tablet for $468, a Lenovo IdeaPad Gaming 3 laptop for $550, and the Apple MacBook Pro M1 (a 2020 model) for $900. All these deals were strong enough to earn our Staff Pick designation.

The retailer also took up to $300 off select Lenovo devices, plus it provided other tech deals. Shoppers could get discounts on wireless earbuds from Anker and even Staff Pick-worthy savings on the Apple Watch Series 7 model. Needless to say, regardless of what you need and your budget, Best Buy likely has an offer to fit.

3. Staples

Best for: Cleaning products, traditional school supplies

As an office supply store, Staples should probably be on more shoppers' radars. But many may think there isn't a lot of overlap among office and school supplies. However, the retailer sells plenty of items suitable for offices and backpacks alike.

SEE ALSO: The 7 Best School Supplies to Buy in 2023 (Plus What to Skip)

This Back to School season, for instance, Staples has already knocked up to 40% off select 3M school supplies that teachers might find particularly useful. They include the following:

  • Command strips
  • Post-it pads
  • Scotch tape

At the time of publication, Staples also had a special offer for shoppers who spent $50 on select school supplies. Qualifying purchases came with a free $10 gift card. You could save a card like that to put toward items you may not be ready to buy yet, or items you forgot to buy. Or you could present that gift card to your kid's teacher to help fill the gaps on any supplies they may still need after school begins.

4. Target

Best for: Clothing, school supplies

The bull's-eye retailer might be one of the only stores where you can do all your shopping in one spot, whether it's for K-12 students or for new high school graduates needing college essentials. Shoppers can take advantage of school supply deals that offer savings so high, prices start as low as 25 cents. We saw traditional items such as notebooks, glue, and pencils included in Target's deals, but also more niche products like stationery and craft supplies.

Target is an ideal 1-stop shop, whether you need school supplies for grades K-12 or items for college students moving out for the first time.

Looking for dorm essentials at Target? At the time of publication, the retailer had kitchen and dining items from just 50 cents, bath items from $3, bedding items from $4, and furniture from $28.

Watch for the retailer to also offer deals on health, beauty, and household essentials that'll make stocking new dorm rooms and apartments much easier. Target has historically offered promotions that let you buy four eligible bath, body, and facial care items and earn a free $5 gift card, or get a free $15 gift card with the purchase of $50 in household essentials.

5. Walmart

Best for: Clothing, school supplies

Walmart is another 1-stop shop for those on a Back to School mission. It often has some of the lowest prices available, as well. For instance, this year we've already seen Walmart offer dorm furniture from $30 and kids' clothing priced as low as $4.

Of course, traditional school supplies are available, too, and prices started around 15 cents at the time of publication. The retailer also had backpacks from $6 and lunch essentials from a buck or so. If you need to stock up on school supplies of any kind and want to stay on budget, Walmart is worth checking out.

Ready to shop? Check out all the best Back to School deals available now, and follow us on Facebook to get more helpful savings tips.

Julie Ramhold
Senior Staff Writer/Consumer Analyst

Julie's work has been featured on CNBC, GoBankingRates, Kiplinger, Marketwatch, Money, The New York Times, Real Simple, US News, WaPo, WSJ, Yahoo!, and more. She's extolled the virtues of DealNews in interviews with Cheddar TV, GMA, various podcasts, and affiliates across the United States, plus one in Canada.
DealNews may be compensated by companies mentioned in this article. Please note that, although prices sometimes fluctuate or expire unexpectedly, all products and deals mentioned in this feature were available at the lowest total price we could find at the time of publication (unless otherwise specified).


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