Back to school time can be both exciting and stressful. Exciting for some kids as they may not have seen their school friends during the summer. Exciting for some children who are starting school for the first time. At the same time it can be stressful for them – and stressful for their parents too!
Little One starts Kindergarten in September and both she and Miss Eight definitely fall into the excited category! They’ve been talking about school since August started!
While I love shopping, I tend to prefer shopping online. I don’t have to worry about leaving the house, I don’t have to battle other shoppers at the mall for a parking spot (or get annoyed if someone cuts me off) and I know you can often find some amazing deals online!
And, while I should have been surprised by this fact, I recently learned that, according to a survey conducted by Visa*, Canadians plan on spending an average of $248 on online back-to-school purchases between now and Labour Day (up $8 from 2011) and people from Ontario plan to spend the most at $290. Realistically, it makes a lot of sense. Shopping online is so easy and, if you live away from an urban centre (as many people do), online shopping means not having to travel.
What did surprise, however, is that according to this same survey, combining both in-store and online purchases, Canadians plan to spend an average of $677 total before Labour Day. Wow! Mind you, it only takes a few major purchases (like designer sneakers, expensive clothes and electronics) to really bring that total up! And it makes sense, as the survey also found that clothing (43%), books (26%) and computers and computer related items (17%) are considered the most important items when shopping for back-to-school.
Our back-to-school shopping trip hit two of the areas that the survey said were the most important items – clothing as well as books and other school supplies.
We also did something else without realizing it that makes us similar to many people in the survey as we started shopping in the first half of August. Most shoppers begin back-to-school shopping in August – with 35% starting in the first two weeks, and 27% starting in the last two weeks.
And the responses to the survey included some brilliant advice. Many advise that starting early (31%) will take the stress out of back-to-school shopping while 22% believe preparing a list and 22% suggest shopping online to minimize stress for back-to-school shopping.
So we headed out to the mall for the first part of our back-to-school shopping. So far, purchases have included a variety of clothing, shoes and school supplies for both Little One and Miss Eight (I offered to take Grownup Girl shopping too as she’ll return to university in September but she has a job and said she’d get what she needed on her own – she really has grown up!).
I’m also planning on doing some online shopping to pick up some other deals on clothing, school supplies and lunch bags for the girls that will meet the specific needs of their school days.
If you decide to shop online (I know my shopping will be similar to the 72% of purchases online that will be made from Canadian retailers), make sure that you are shopping securely! To make your shopping experience more secure, Visa Canada has made the online shopping experience a little easier. Visa Debit provides an option for those shopping online, allowing Canadian consumers to purchase items with funds drawn directly from their bank account. Visa cardholders can also visit Visaperks.ca, where shoppers can find coupons and special offers from a variety of companies (such as Adidas, Gap Kids and Scholar’s Choice).
Plus, shoppers can breathe easy knowing that they’re protected through Visa’s layered approach to security and fraud prevention, including Verified by Visa (a password-based security program designed for online shopping,), CVV2 or the “three-digit code” (which helps prove to the merchant that the cardholder has the card in his or her possession when ordering online or over the phone.), Zero Liability and E-Promise.
Giveaway: One reader from Canada (excluding Quebec) will win a $50 Visa prepaid gift card!
Remember, you must complete the mandatory entry in order for your extra entries to count (entries without the mandatory first entry will be discarded)!
Each entry should also appear in a different comment (do not put them together into one comment).
To enter the giveaway, visit the VisaPerks and tell me which specific offer interests you the most (1 entry).
- Follow me Twitter AND tweet the following (please include the link to your tweet):#Win a $50 Visa card – a great help when you need to #BackToSchoolSpend CANADA http://wp.me/p10r9i-2ju 09/28 @ReviewCorner #canwin
- Tell me if you do more of your back-to-school shopping online or in store.
- ”like” Visa Perks’ Facebook fan page – include your Facebook name (1 entry)
- subscribe to My Little Review Corner’s RSS feeds (or tell me you already receive them)– include the email address you used (1 entry)
- subscribe to My Little Review Corner via email (or tell me you already receive them) – include the email address you used (1 entry)
- ”like” my Facebook fan page – include your Facebook name (1 entry)
- share this giveaway (use Reshare button on my Facebook fan page
- follow me on Pinterest (1 entry)
- pin any of my recipe or weight-loss posts on Pinterest and share the link (1 entry per post – unlimited entries)
- follow me on StumbleUpon -include your user name (1 entry)
- Comment on any of my non-giveaway posts – let me know which post you have commented on (1 entry per post – unlimited entries)
*Contest closes at 11:59 PM pm EST on Friday, September 28th, 2012 . Open to residents of Canada (excluding Quebec), 18+ years of age.*
*Note: For the Visa survey, conducted by Pollara, a total of 1,404 online shoppers were surveyed online between July 12 – July 17, 2012. In order to qualify for this, survey respondents had to be 18yrs+, reside in Canada and have purchased something over the internet in the past six months. An unweighted probability sample of this size, with 100 per cent response rate, would have an estimated margin of error of plus or minus 2.6 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. Margin of error for subgroups will be larger.