Top 10 Tech Must-Haves for Back to School

It’s back to school season once again, and I can’t be the only one who feels like we were celebrating Memorial Day and the start of summer yesterday! Even though the summer is starting to come to a close, back to school season always feels like its own holiday. I am not heading back to school this year, but I still wanted to get in the spirit of the season. So, I culled through all of the back to school gear to create a top 10 list of tech must-haves for students, especially for high school and college students. Take a look below, and get ready to shop and save on tech this year!

1. Computer/Laptop:

A computer is a must for students. I have tried a number of different brands from HP to Dell, and I have to admit Apple is my favorite. I cannot recommend my Macbook Pro enough (I have a 13”) because it reboots quickly, runs the Adobe programs I started using while in college, and doesn’t need to be replaced for years.

Where to purchase? Best Buy or

2. Programs:

Although Macbooks come equipped with Apple programs, I’m still a fan of the Microsoft Office suite. You can purchase your cloud access in store. Make sure to look for the option for Microsoft Office Home & Student because there is a savings.

Where to purchase? Best Buy

3. Calculator:

I still remember purchasing my first scientific calculator in middle school, and it felt like a right of passage. It’s not an inexpensive item, so the best thing to do is to shop for one in store at Best Buy or online at The prices will likely be comparable, and you will be able to earn kicks toward a gift card which will feel like receiving cash back!

Where to purchase? Best Buy or 

4. Headphones:

Headphones are a must for all students, and they can easily serve many purposes. They’re great to have on hand during the day while studying in the library, going to the gym in between classes, walking around campus, and catching up on your favorite show without interrupting your roommate at night. Bose and Airpods are a few of my go-to options.

Where to purchase? Best Buy or,,, or 

5. Smart Watch:

I haven’t purchased a smart watch yet, but my friends who are in grad school have said they are complete game changers during the school year! Those who have them say it’s helpful to be able to send quick texts back to friends and family on-the-go without having to pull out their phones, track steps to ensure they’re staying active in between classes, and have quick access to favorite apps. Of course, there are plenty of other benefits, like the most basic one of being able to tell time – a key thing to know while taking a test to ensure you complete the exam!

Where to purchase? Best Buy or,, or

6. Roku TV:

From my experience of purchasing TVs, Roku is definitely the way to go, especially for dorms! Being able to access apps like Hulu, Netflix, Prime Video, and YouTube directly from your TV makes streaming even more fun and simple. The value is definitely there, and friends will definitely want to gather in your room or apartment which makes a great TV an investment in meeting others.

Where to purchase? Best Buy Note: Don’t forget to purchase a subscription to Hulu through your Shopkick app because you will earn kicks!

7. Kindle:

As a communications major, I had plenty of assigned reading for all of my classes. However, I still looked forward to reading a book of my choice at the end of the day. I find I complete books more quickly when I read them on my Kindle, and my Kindle is so lightweight which makes me feel encouraged to slip it into a bag while I’m on the go.

Where to purchase? Amazon Devices

8. Smartphone:

A smartphone is a natural choice for a student! Access to all of the typical capabilities of a phone are obvious, but the addition of apps and email at your fingertips is what makes a smartphone a must-have for high school and college students.

Where to purchase? Best Buy Note: While you can purchase a smartphone at many retailers in store and online, the major perk of Best Buy, outside of your ability to earn kicks, is almost every cell phone company has representatives in stores. Purchasing your phone and signing a new contract at the same time makes the process quicker and easier!

9. Backpack:

A great backpack is a must for every student! In every bag I purchase, I always look for a protected compartment for my computer. Look and size are also important, and I’ve always had great luck with Tumi, Jansport, and The North Face. The quality of all three has always been great, and I’ve been able to transition my bags from high school to college and then to my career without fear of looking too young.

Where to purchase?,, or

10. Gaming System:

A gaming system might not be an obvious choice for back to school, but it will provide a fun and quick way to make friends in college! A Nintendo Switch offers a great price point and system size. You will also have the advantage of being able to play classic games like Mario Kart and Super Mario Party. Dorm room floor challenge, anyone?

Where to purchase? Best Buy or

Make sure to shop for your tech with Shopkick, so you can earn kicks to redeem for a free gift card. Join the back to school conversation happening now in our Facebook community!

Celebrate Fall: Shop, Save, and Earn BIG Kicks with Shopkick

Fall has officially arrived, and we are celebrating! This season always brings to mind the of changing leaves, apple harvests, layered outfits, treats mixed with a few tricks, and a general feeling of coziness. With crisper temperatures in the air and a palette switch to moodier hues, we always feel we need to break away from the bold palettes of summer in our fashion and home décor choices in favor of pieces that honor the season. We’ve come to the conclusion we cannot be alone in our feelings of wanting to properly mix things up, so we thought a weekend of BIG KICKS was in order!

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Even though the internet is always at our fingertips, there’s so much fun to be had when you shop in stores. You can see, touch, and feel products, try all of your finds on in store to find your best fit and avoid a trip for exchanges, and get advice from the pros. Plus, a day (or weekend!) of shopping is the perfect excuse for a girl’s day or night out – stop for lunch, browse through stores in person, and cap your day off with cocktails!

As temperatures start to dip, we like to make sure our selection of basics are at the ready. As much as we enjoy spring and summer’s warm temperatures and lengthy sandal seasons, some of the first pieces we’re most excited to wear again in the fall are jeans, blouses, and boots. TJ Maxx and Marshalls are two of the best stores to shop for all three. We’re always amazed by the bargains we find for pieces from top brands that allow us to keep our budgets in check.

Swapping accessories is another fun perk of fall! Brighton has a complete selection of unique jewelry pieces, including bracelets, necklaces, and rings that are unlike anything we can find anywhere else. Plus, the fall is the perfect time to swap out your purse for a new one in a deeper hue, and a new work tote is definitely in order. Just consider either one part of your back-to-school prep! Don’t forget to take a peek at Brighton’s fantastic selection of boots.

One of the best ways to stay inspired and on track with your fitness goals and routines are to look the part! Stop into Reebok and stock up on new workout gear, like tops, shorts, crops, socks, and sneakers. Their selection is wide, and their gear in on trend and in style for fall runs and classes and any errands you might run post-workout.

And, don’t forget to update your makeup! Even though your products may not have run out, the fall is a great time to toss products you have had for several months in favor of replacements. Talk to the pros at Ulta to make sure you’re using the best products for your skin, complexion, and overall look. They likely have a few suggestions for you that you may not have considered yet! Plus, Ulta also has one of the best selections of fragrance and hair products that sometimes feel hard to find.


Whether you’re prepping for the game and need a new jersey, shopping for new home gadgets in advance of fall’s biggest holidays, updating your towels or bedroom linens, or shopping for new clothes or shoes, always has some of the best deals! When you shop with Shopkick you will earn kicks, plus is constantly running additional sales. It’s a complete win-win shopping experience!

Whenever we’re looking for on trend pieces, we always visit! The brand’s online retail space is so vast it makes us feel as though we’re browsing in store. It’s a great place to shop to try out new-to-you pieces you’re not quite ready to invest in yet, and ASOS also has a wonderful selection of dresses and more for special events (wedding, formal, and holiday seasons, we’re looking at you!). has a plethora of products from which to choose, but we’re always drawn to their home décor pieces, including their furniture! Browse their linens and accessories, and then pop over to explore their wide selection of area rugs, furniture, appliances, and more! The fall is one of the best times to revive your home because falling temperatures will have you spending much more time indoors very soon. Create a space you enjoy!

If you’re searching for an online destination that has a little bit of everything on your list, is the place to go! The site has a complete selection of tech, including cell phones, tablets, laptops, and more, as well as a complete selection of home appliances, clothing, beauty, and more. We can never visit their site without leaving with at least one shipment on its way to our doorstep!

When we think of appliances, we immediately think of! The online giant has some of the best deals all year long for large and small appliances, including dishwashers, washers and dryers, refrigerators, microwaves, and even ovens. Now is the best time to make sure the appliances in your home are ready to roll because there are a host of holidays on the horizon! If you’re looking for baby clothes, new outfits for yourself, fitness equipment, or new tools, you will find those and more too!

What’s on your fall shopping list?

If you haven’t downloaded Shopkick yet, make sure to change that ASAP before you set out on your fall shopping journey! Earn kicks in stores and online with all of the retailers we mentioned above as well as many more. Then cash in your kicks for free gift cards! Fall shopping has never felt so budget friendly.

Back to School Savings

Although we all may want the long days of summer to last all year, there is one major perk to going back to school: shopping! When I was a student, back to school shopping was such a highlight that I always chose a day during the week, wrote it down in my planner and circled it, and then started my very own countdown.

Before my back to school shopping day, I would review all of the supplies I needed (and every last thing I was convinced I should add), tally up my budget, and plan my day based on which store I wanted to visit first and which store I wanted to save until last. Whether I was prepping to go back to high school or mentally preparing for another year of college, back to school shopping always felt like its very own end of summer holiday.

Though I may not be heading back to class, I still look forward to the season every year because it’s a chance to offer my tried and true back to school shopping tips and tricks! And, they’re even better now thanks to Shopkick! Let’s review a few of my favorite retailers for back to school shopping and what I recommend purchasing below.


I cannot be the only one who opts to analyze every last feature a backpack has to offer. In high school, that meant determining if the backpack offered enough support for my back and shoulders as I carried books and binders for four classes everyday across two campuses (we didn’t have lockers). In college, I was still concerned about support, but I needed the added feature of a safe, padded spot for my laptop. has so many fantastic options for backpacks perfect for high school (JanSport was my go-to!) and those suited for college (North Face was a favorite, but I’ve heard fantastic reviews about Tumi!).

Also, make sure to take a peek at all of the suitcases and duffels available through eBags. They’re wonderful to use when moving onto campus, and a great suitcase will serve you well as you travel home, go on vacation, and even study abroad throughout college.


If you have yet to peruse HSN for back to school shopping, be warned: you’re going to add so many great pieces to your list! Outside of scheduling classes and making sure I had the correct edition of all of my required books, my computer was always my top concern in college. You can purchase a new laptop or desktop computer through HSN because they carry all of the top brands, like Apple, HP, and Dell. Plus, if you’re in charge of bringing the TV, you can add a new flat screen to your cart too. Outside of electronics, you can also stock up on kitchen supplies for your dorm or apartment (HSN has small appliances, kitchen tools, and even plates, silverware, and glasses at the ready). And, they carry such fun lines of clothing, and they have makeup. It’s like one stop shopping for back to school!


Can we all agree there is nothing quite like new school supplies? Jet has an amazing selection of every last thing you will need for class – binders, pencils, pens, notebooks, highlighters, and even backpacks. Plus, their team has curated a special section for high school! Even though wandering through the aisles is fun, shopping online with Jet is so much more efficient! Plus, when you use Shopkick, you’re saving money on your supplies. Shopkick and school supplies – it’s a dream combination!


I don’t know of anyone who doesn’t shop on Amazon! The deals are incredible (and even better when you shop with Shopkick to earn kicks!), and you cannot beat the variety. Rather than simply adding all of your usual purchases to your cart, I highly suggest pausing to shop their collections from Ella Moon and Mae. The pieces are quality basics, trendy while still feeling classic, and many can be dressed up for a presentation or dressed down for a typical day in class. Anything that can serve double duty is a must in my book!

Also, let’s talk about study breaks. You will 100% need them, and breaks will help increase your productivity and prevent you from burning out. Reading for fun is one of the most underrated hobbies, and I cannot recommend reading a few pages every day from a great author you enjoy on your Kindle. Another option? Audible! Whether you’re riding the bus, train, or subway, driving your car, or walking in between classes, listening to an audio book is a great way to disconnect from schoolwork even if it’s just for a few minutes at a time. Stay refreshed so you can be your best!


Let’s talk about food! The best thing I ever did when I was in high school and college was purchase in bulk. My parents and I would review what I planned to bring for lunch and what I wanted to enjoy as a snack once I got home, and then we would shop together to purchase things in bulk (my choices rarely wavered!). That ritual carried over into college, and I would have definitely shopped through Boxed! Rather than visiting stores in person, you can simply shop online and have all of your favorite foods shipped directly to you. Pro tip: get your roommates in on the game so you can all shop together and save by earning kicks through Shopkick!

Where are you shopping for back to school? What’s at the top of your list?