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How to save money on school uniform costs

UK footwear retailer, Wynsors, has used the rate of inflation to estimate that families face paying 20% more for school uniforms than they did back in 2018.

With this in mind, Wynsors has carried out a new survey of more than 1,000 UK parents to understand exactly how much this increased cost of school uniform is affecting their finances. Wynsors said the results do not paint a positive picture for households across the UK:

  • 76% of parents agree that the cost of buying school uniform and supplies puts a strain on their household budget.
  • Over half of parents (56%) spend less on new things for themselves (such as clothing) so they can stretch their household budget to cover the cost of buying new school uniform.
  • 20% of parents are buying school uniform and supplies second-hand to save money.

With parents spending on average £230.40 to buy a full new school uniform set in 2023, households across the UK are struggling to afford the cost, with 1 in 3 (37%) parents stating that they receive no financial support with the cost of new school uniform, but are in need of it. 

52% of parents think that abolishing school uniform is the answer to help them save money.

To help parents on a budget with their back-to-school shopping, Wynsors has put together five handy tips to help find a little bit of calm in the spending storm:

  1. Try to delay some purchases – You don’t have to buy every item straight away, as chances are, your child won’t need or use all the supplies on the first day. Stagger the payments, as it’s likely that there will be items that can be purchased later in the year.
  2. Set out a budgeting plan – Having a pre-planned budget in mind before the first day back rolls around will save you the hassle of stretching your budget that month for everything else. Having a rough idea of how much you want to spend on each item will allow you to adjust your spending accordingly.
  3. Shop the sales – Keep an eye out for any of the back-to-school supplies you need leading up to September and buy them when they’re discounted or on offer.
  4. Decide between needs and wants – Make sure the essential items are taken care of first and then see if there’s any budget left for new, less essential items.
  5. Get organised and start early – Write down a list of everything you need to buy and don’t wait until the last minute.

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