I know it’s summer but shopping doesn’t end when the school year does, huh? Kids keep outgrowing their clothes and shoes, seasons keep changing, birthdays come along, and the new school year comes around again all too quickly.
Jack’s school sent home helpful reminders last week about purchasing school supplies for next year (minimum requested: $48, plus “suggested” additional donations for the science booster and other supplies) – the price has gone up from last year due to (you guessed it!) budget cuts. They also encouraged us to keep collecting Box Tops coupons during summer break to get a head start on fundraising. Lucky for me, Box Tops for Education itself is helping our family and school out with this goal – I was given a gift card to use while shopping in the Box Tops Marketplace so that I could blog about my experience and spread the word about earning FREE money for your school of choice (you don’t even have to have a kid) when you shop online!
So, first thing’s first – I set up an account online and set my default school in my profile. Then I went and perused the vendors in the Marketplace, which has more than 250 stores. Here are some of my favorite retailers and how much they send over to the school of my choice for every $10 I spend:
- Target – 1 box top per $10 spent
- The Children’s Place – 2.5 box tops per $10 spent
- Barnes & Noble – 2 per $10
- Build-a-Bear – 3 per $10
- Walgreens – 3.5 per $10
- Drugstore.com – 5 per $10
- Groupon – 2 per $10
- Living Social – 2 per $10
- Kohl’s – 2 per $10
- Overstock – 1.5 per $10
- Highlights Magazine – 12 per $10
- Old Navy – 2 per $10
- iTunes – 2.5 per $10
- Starbucks – 3.5 per $10
I shop at least one of these stores every week and my average spending is definitely more than $10. Now that I’ve signed up, all I have to do is click through to the store website from the Box Tops Marketplace when I make a purchase and Jack’s elementary school gets free money! (Of course I’m kicking myself now for not going through the Marketplace before now. Knowledge is power, people!)
And not only can you earn money for your school but in some cases you can get discounts on your purchases, as well. The Marketplace has new coupons all the time – right now they have a coupon for 30% off any purchase at Land’s End.
The site is incredibly easy to use and I am liking it better than the traditional box tops collection method because I am not limited to products that have the box tops symbol on them (I really do look for that symbol on the things I buy). So far I’ve purchased coffee from Starbucks (Via in bulk!), delivery food from Seamless.com, and a few books from Barnes & Noble and I’ve already earned $5.66 for Jack’s school. Considering how often I shop online, this is going to be a HUGE moneymaker for Jack’s school. Apparently I’m the only one so far participating so I really need to get the word out, too. I’d love to see out-of-pocket costs for parents go down over the next year.
I received a big response last time I posted about Box Tops for Education – it sounds like a lot of you out there collect those coupons. Now I’m wondering – are you using the Marketplace, too? Am I the last to know about this?? And, if not, are you going to use it now that you know about it? I certainly hope so!
Disclosure: Information, products and promotional items have been provided by General Mills and Box Tops for Education and its program partners, but opinions expressed are my own. For further information on my media policies, see my Disclosure page.