CHARLOTTE, N.C., Aug. 9, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- As the era of
COVID-19 stretches into another topsy-turvy year, families with
school-age kids are gearing up for another deeply uncertain and
costly back-to-school shopping season, according to LendingTree's
2021 Back-to-School Shopping Survey.
LendingTree polled more than 1,000 parents with children under
the age of 18 and found that families today are dealing with a wide
range of financial stressors, including higher levels of debt,
sticker shock from inflation and longer school supply lists brought
on by the pandemic.
- 1 in 3 parents of school-age children expect to go into debt
when shopping for back-to-school. That percentage has
consistently risen over the past three years, from 26% in 2019 to
30% in 2020 and now 33% in 2021.
- Parents struggle to afford school supplies as expenses
increase. Parents of school-age children expect back-to-school
shopping will cost them an average of $498, and 29% say they're unable to afford their
child's school supplies this year.
- Hybrid learning costs parents more than in-person-only
learning or virtual-only school. Parents whose children will
learn via a mixture of online and in-person school expect to shell
out $775, and 42% think they'll go
into debt paying for it.
- Pandemic-related changes to supply lists come with a price
tag. 35% of parents noted that their child's school made
pandemic-related changes to this year's school supply lists, such
as more hand sanitizer, cleaning supplies and laptops.
- Shoppers shift back to in-person purchases, and less than
50% shop around for their best deal. Less than a quarter of
parents (23%) will do most of their back-to-school shopping online,
a big drop from 44% in 2020. At the same time, just 49% say they
always compare prices at multiple stores to find their best
- A majority of parents won't earn credit card rewards on
back-to-school shopping purchases. Of those with school-age
children, 63% do not plan to use a credit card to pay for
most of those items, causing them to miss out on potentially
"Raising kids is always crazy expensive, and 2021 is certainly
no exception," said Matt Schulz,
chief credit analyst at LendingTree. "Then factor in recent
inflationary growth, and that just makes things even harder on
countless parents who've seen their financial lives flipped upside
down by the pandemic."
To view the full report,
LendingTree commissioned Qualtrics to
conduct an online survey of 1,013 parents with children under 18,
from July 21 to July 26, 2021. The
survey was administered using a nonprobability-based sample, and
quotas were used to ensure the sample base represented the overall
population. All responses were reviewed by researchers for quality
LendingTree (NASDAQ: TREE) is the
nation's leading online marketplace that connects consumers with
the choices they need to be confident in their financial decisions.
LendingTree empowers consumers to shop for financial services the
same way they would shop for airline tickets or hotel stays,
comparing multiple offers from a nationwide network of over 500
partners in one simple search, and can choose the option that best
fits their financial needs. Services include mortgage loans,
mortgage refinances, auto loans, personal loans, business loans,
student loans, insurance, credit cards and more. Through the
LendingTree platform, consumers receive free credit scores, credit
monitoring and recommendations to improve credit health.
LendingTree proactively compares consumers' credit accounts against
offers on our network and notifies consumers when there is an
opportunity to save money. In short, LendingTree's purpose is to
help simplify financial decisions for life's meaningful moments
through choice, education and support. LendingTree, LLC is a
subsidiary of LendingTree, Inc. For more information, go to
www.lendingtree.com, dial 800-555-TREE, like our Facebook page
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