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Price comparison: Which retailer has better back-to-school deals?

We compared prices at Target, Walmart and Amazon to see which one would save you the most money.

HOUSTON — So you missed tax-free weekend for back-to-school supplies, but you still want to save money. What now? 

Walmart, Target and Amazon are all trying to get you to spend your back-to-school budget with them, so we shopped around to see how sales stack up.

The items we chose are constants you’ll see on just about every school supply list for every grade in every district:

  • 1 clear backpack

  • 5 composition notebooks

  • 2 boxes of #2 pencils

  • 1 pencil pouch

  • 1 box of colored pencils

  • Loose leaf notebook paper

  • 2 boxes of tissues

RELATED: Many Houston parents worried they can't afford school supplies

There are a lot of variables here.  The retailers don’t all share the same brands or even the same products from the same brands. What’s available and extra fees can depend on whether you choose in-store pickup, delivery or shipping. All that said, here’s what we found.

Walmart

To ship the items from Walmart, I’m looking at a total of $35.91 before taxes.

Clear backpack

Composition notebooks

#2 pencils

Pencil pouch

Colored pencils

Notebook paper

Facial tissues

Target

It was a little trickier at Target. The items were cheaper – $33.56 pre-tax – but you don’t qualify for shipping unless you spend $35. We ended up adding an extra box of tissues to reach that threshold, so the final total for the items is $35.25. So even with that extra item, it was a little cheaper than Walmart.

Clear backpack

Composition notebooks

#2 pencils

Pencil pouch

Colored pencils

Notebook paper

Facial tissues

Amazon

Finally, Amazon. We shopped the site as a Prime member, so if you don’t have a membership, pricing will be different. We were also careful not to add products with added shipping fees. Pre-tax, this cart added up to $61.20. It was the most expensive by a lot.

Clear backpack

Composition notebooks

#2 pencils

Pencil pouch

Colored pencils

Notebook paper

Facial tissues

NOTE: It's possible prices will change between when we shopped for items and when you do. 

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