With back to school time on the horizon, school supplies are at the forefront of parent’s mind. While you may have to do a weekend shopping spree to load up on notebooks and pencils, you also need to consider the additional costs throughout the year for feeding your child each day.
Here are 5 ways to save money on school lunches for the year:
5 Ways to Save Money on School Lunches 1 of 6
Click through for 5 easy ways to save money on school lunches for the year...
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Invest in a Quality Carrier 2 of 6
Kids normally don't use the old-school lunchboxes anymore but there are many versatile products out there that allow your kid to eat more than just PB&J. Invest in a good quality lunch tote that will keep your child's lunch cold. Insulated totes and thermos bottles give you more options for what you can send to school. You should also invest in the right-sized containers to hold cut up vegetables, fruits, and dips. Keep a stash of disposable spoons and forks so your kids aren't tossing your good silverware.
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Write Out Your Options 3 of 6
In a rush, it is easy to throw together a quick sandwich as your child heads out the door for the bus. Take some time to write down a list of other options outside of the sandwich arena. By having a list to refer to, you may be more inclined to pre-pack school lunches ahead of time. Consider the foods your child likes best and make up sample menus for the week ahead. This will make your shopping list a lot easier to put together.
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Keep It Convenient 4 of 6
You'll pay top dollar for the single-serve, cute convenience lunches at the store but can make your own for so much less at home. Buy segregated containers so you can create Lunchable-like meals for your child. Provide several items for them to munch on at lunchtime like cut up cheeses, meats, veggies, and fruit. Add a bottle of water and a dessert you make at home. You'll save a lot of money by making a whole bowl of pudding rather than buying single-serve cups at the store.
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Plan Around the Sales 5 of 6
Keep up with the sales fliers at your local grocery store. Plan lunch menus for the week based on the items marked on sale or for which you have a coupon. You can save a lot of cash by shopping based on the sales. Use the Internet to find fun recipes ahead of time that younger children will appreciate to keep them eating healthy.
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Fund a Lunch Account 6 of 6
Keep a small amount of money in your child's school lunch account. This can be used as a safety net for the days you are out of time or your child leaves their lunch on the counter. By keeping a couple of dollars at the ready, you can be assured your child will have something to eat and you won't have to waste gas to drop off a forgotten lunch at school.
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