Mystery Shopping Tips for Parents: Saving Money on Back-to-School Expenses

The time prepare kids to head back to school in the fall is fast approaching. Many mystery shopping parents have been struggling through the summer months working on their mystery shopping assignments with kids in tow. They may eagerly be anticipating the fall months when they can once again work on their assignments with greater ease on their own. However, while often anticipated by many mystery shopping parents, this time of year can also be a time of great expense. After all, between buying new clothes, shoes, school supplies, backpacks and more for each of your kids can cost a small fortune. As a mystery shopper, you have the unique ability to save money on many of these expenses.


School Supplies

Buying a few pencils and spiral notebooks may not seem like it would cost a lot of money, but school supplies lists are growing ever longer. Plus, if you have several kids, you may easily spend a hundred dollars or more on school supplies. You can use your mystery shopping assignment expense reimbursements to pay for most or all of these purchases. Consider using assignments at venues that sell these supplies to their maximum potential. For example, you can pick up a few grocery store or general purpose store assignments. If possible, you can spread the purchase of these supplies out across multiple assignments to make the most of expense reimbursements.


Clothes and Shoes

It can be more difficult to use your mystery shopping assignments to pay for the kids’ clothes and shoes for school. Consider that your kids have to find clothes they like in sizes that fit with these assignments. Otherwise, you may be forced to make a required purchase at a clothing store that you otherwise never intended to make. With this in mind, you may consider researching the styles different stores carry before you decide to take on an assignment. If necessary, visit the stores’ websites with your kids before requesting an assignment. If your kids can’t find anything they like online at the store’s website, they likely won’t find anything they like at the actual store either.


Hair Cuts

If you are like most parents, you will also get your kids’ haircuts before school starts. Whether they really need it or not, you may want them to make a great first impression on their teachers and the other kids, and getting a trim or an entirely new style can help them to walk into class with greater confidence. Mystery shopping assignments for hairstylists can be difficult to find, but they are not impossible. Consider asking for some assistance on the mystery shopping forums to find providers that offer these assignments. Then, keep your eyes open for these assignments and snatch them up as they become available. Kids need haircuts throughout the year, so this is a great assignment to pick up during back-to-school time as well as any other time of the year.


Getting ready to send your kids back-to-school can cost an arm and a leg, but it doesn’t have to. When choose your mystery shopping assignments strategically, you can really make the most of your job and save money on your necessary purchases.