Best Places to Shop for Back-to-School Supplies


This story is part of Gift Guide, our year-round collection of the best gift ideas.

Summer is in full swing, and you know what that means, right? It’s time to stock up on back-to-school supplies (because when you’re a parent, there’s no such thing as summer vacation). Like everything these days, back-to-school supplies are more expensive this year, so you’ll want to get a head start to get everything your child needs at the best prices. 

If you want to be able to cross off everything on your list in one go, shopping online is the best option. It can also save you money since it’s easier to do price comparisons. Luckily, there are several online retailers that will make your back-to-school shopping a whole lot easier. We’ve rounded up a list of the best places to shop for back-to-school supplies based on prices, availability and the range of items offered. Here are the best places to shop online to find everything your student needs to get them through the school year.


Once I’ve written out a supply list with specific items my kids will need, Target is my go-to place to shop. From highlighters and notebooks to presharpened No. 2 Ticonderoga pencils, Target is a great place to stock up on back-to-school essentials for any grade — and it’s totally budget-friendly. Plus, I don’t have to buy everything in bulk, which can be a problem with some online retailers. (No, I do not need to purchase six plastic pencil cases at once.) Keep in mind that you’ll need to spend at least $35 to qualify for Target’s free shipping, but we all know that’s not hard to do.


If you already have a Prime membership, Amazon is a great way to save on school supplies. It also has a nice selection of supply kit bundles, which is helpful for those who aren’t sure exactly what they’ll need. If you don’t have a Prime membership, it’s worth it to sign up for Amazon’s free 30-day trial so you can at least get the free expedited shipping before school starts. Just be sure to cancel it if you don’t plan to continue paying for Prime.

Wisdom Supply

The best way to be eco-friendly is to sort through your child’s school supplies from last year and see what can be reused. But if you absolutely must purchase new supplies and you still want to be as green as possible, Wisdom Supply is your best bet. All of its products are designed to be plastic-free and zero-waste.

Bed Bath & Beyond

Bed Bath & Beyond isn’t the best place to shop for notebooks and pens, but when it comes to dorm room essentials for college students, it can’t be beat. From shower caddies to towels to twin XL sheets, you’ll find everything your student needs to survive dorm living this fall.


L.L.Bean has a great selection of affordable lunch boxes and backpacks in a variety of prints. And if your kid isn’t keen on backpacks, there’s also a wide array of classic totes available. Teachers and college students can get 10% off their orders, or you can get 10% off if you subscribe to the L.L.Bean email list. Also be sure to check out our recommendations for the best lunch boxes and backpacks for school. 

Best Buy

Most schools no longer do remote learning, but chances are your student will still need some tech to get them through the school year. Whether they need a new laptop, noise-canceling headphones or a calculator, Best Buy has you covered. If you’re shopping for a laptop, be sure to check out our picks for the best laptop for college and the best laptop for high school students.


After two years of online learning and Zoom, some students understandably would rather use good old-fashioned paper instead of a screen. Papier has a gorgeous selection of notebooks and academic planners, and you can customize them with your student’s name — a thoughtful way to get them ready and excited for a new school year.

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The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.


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