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Back-to-School Means Back to Stress for Parents and Kids


Parents and teens don’t always see eye-to-eye, but when it comes to the back to school season, both sides agree it’s one of the most stressful times of the year. According to a new survey conducted on behalf of, a pioneer and leader in online cash back shopping, almost all American adults (96 percent) and teens (97 percent) surveyed are stressed as the start of the new school year looms.

More than half of parents chalked up shopping for clothes and school items as the most stressful part of the back to school season (56 percent), while almost 7 in 10 teens ranked waking up early to get to class as their top concern (69 percent). Other top stressors include:

Back to School Stressors for Adults

Percent of Americans Who Said This

Back to School Stressors for Teens

Percent of Americans Who Said This

Shopping for clothes and school items

56 percent

Waking up early to get to class

69 percent

Hectic school and extracurricular activity schedules; and making sure my child gets ready and to school on time

50 percent each

Getting too much homework

64 percent

Helping with homework

38 percent

Not liking my teachers

42 percent

Bullying at school

31 percent

Not having the right clothes

32 percent

Bad teachers

29 percent

Not fitting in

31 percent

Parents and Teens Worry about Price and Availability

The survey showed that when it comes to back to school shopping, both parents and teens are concerned that they won’t be able to afford new clothes and school supplies. More than half of American parents (55 percent) rank not being able to afford everything their kids want as their #1 concern about back to school shopping, while 37 percent of teens worry that their parents can’t afford to buy the clothes they’re asking for.

Shopping in physical stores is also a concern for both parents and teens. More than one third of parents don’t want to deal with crowds at the mall (38 percent) and almost 4 in 10 teens are worried that they won’t be able to find what they’re looking for in a store (38 percent).

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When it comes to agreeing on the essential back to school items, 26 percent of teens are worried that their parents won’t agree with their taste and won’t let them buy the clothes they want. Parents are also stressed about shopping with their teens, with 32 percent of adults ranking this as one of their top back to school shopping concerns.

Parents Don’t Wait Until the Last Minute to Shop

The survey discovered that one third of adults are ahead of the game for back to school shopping, with 33 percent saying they start three or more weeks before school starts. Another 54 percent of parents also start early with 28 percent starting two or more weeks before and 26 percent starting one to two weeks before school starts.

The survey also found that 90 percent of Americans save on their back to school shopping. Savings accumulated by leveraging coupons, discounts and cash back offers are put to use by shoppers in many different ways. While almost half of adults plan to spend their back to school savings on their kids (48 percent) or invest it in a college fund (27 percent), more than a quarter plan to spend the money on shopping (27 percent). Family oriented parents will spend it on vacations (26 percent), and those in need of home remodeling spend it on home repairs (21 percent).

From now until August 25, back to school shoppers can receive up to double cash back on select retailers via Ebates. For more details on specific retailers participating in the special offer, visit Shoppers can also download the free app at Google Play and the App Store.

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