College season has begun, the back to school sales have rolled out, and students can still grab some of the biggest savings they'll see all year. It's the perfect time to stock up any essentials they’ll need as a freshman living away from home for the first time, from laptops, to vacuums, to the best air fryers.
The back to school sales for college students have been well underway ahead of term, and we've found all the best last minute deals for anything a college student might still need. On the lookout for even more bargains? Feel free to check out our hubs for Black Friday deals and Amazon Prime Day deals.
A load of our favorite brands have been rolling out fresh deals with some massive savings that could really help to set up their new dorm, for less. We know that college supplies can get (very) expensive so you still have time to save the kids pocket money and, let’s face it, the impact it’ll have on your wallet, on the well-needed gear before they go back to college.
Back to school sales: our top 15
We've covered pretty much anything that a college freshman could need to upgrade their life at college - whether that's the convenience of an air fryer, the processing power of a new laptop, or the freshness of an air purifier.
Crispy food that's easy to cook, uses less oil and cooks quickly? No one understands the importance of an air fryer more than students, and now one of Ninja's favourite models is under $100. It's a reliable cooker that'll likely become the main character of your college kitchen.
It may look too big for a college dorm, but the Foodi 8-in-1 digital oven from Ninja can fold away to save precious kitchen space when not in use. An air fryer, convection oven, and toaster oven all in one - it's a super handy appliance to have for cooking easy meals in no time at all.
French fries, eggs and chicken are some of the 10 presets included in this PowerXL air fryer, making it even easier to cook your favourite food the right way. The 8-qt air fryer is ideal for cooking full meals, too, with an XL capacity and two cooking levels .
At less than five inches wide, the K-Mini is the perfect coffee maker for busy kitchens. Keurig coffee makers are designed to brew delicious, fresh coffee in less time, and you can brew any cup size between 6-12oz with the Keurig coffee pods. It's a neat brewer that can serve up a cup at a time - and it's available in a load of different colours.
For something more comprehensive, Cuisinart's programmable PerfecTemp coffee maker can adjust your brew strength, self clean, and automatically turn itself off. It's a great piece of kit if you like your coffee to be perfect, and can be programmed in advance to be ready for when you need it.
It's a bit more of a spend, but this coffee and espresso maker from Nespresso is the full package. It's barista-level coffee that's easy and quick to brew, and the Nespresso pods give you a load of choice for what flavours and strengths you want.
If you've researched the best laptop to buy in time for college, there's no doubt you'll have come across the MacBook Air. It's a powerful machine whilst also being Apple's thinnest and lightest laptop. Using the (relatively) new M1 chip, the laptop offers fast processing, vibrant displays and up to 18 hours of battery life - now $250 off at Best Buy.
$430 is a pretty incredible discount on a college laptop, and it might just save you enough money to grab an air fryer or vacuum too. The HP Pavilion Aero is a super lightweight laptop, with a 13.3'' screen offering a 16:10 micro edge display. It also has a webcam with temporal noise reduction - ideal for all those online lectures.
Gaming laptops are perfect if you're into, well, gaming... But they're also powerful computers that can come in handy if your studies require any digital programs like Adobe Creative Cloud or engineering software. The Acer Nitro 5 has 16GB RAM and 512GB storage, powered by an Intel Core i5 processor.
Along with powerful suction and swivel steering, this Shark vacuum has a removable pod that turns it into a handheld vacuum. This is super handy for tackling different rooms, furniture and any food or crumbs that may (often) spill.
What's better than having your drinks in the comfort of your own room? A mini fridge can be a great way to save space in the busy kitchen fridge and have your favourite goods an arm's reach away. And although this fridge is compact enough to save space, it can fit a surprising amount inside.
Using a HEPA filter, this air purifier from AROEVE can filter out particles from smoke, pollen, dust, and hair (plus many others) to keep your bedroom as fresh and odor-free as it should be. It even includes an aroma pad where you can add your own essential oils to produce a nice, fragrant smell.
More kitchen essentials
Ideal for busy kitchens, this compact microwave has one-touch buttons for common foods like popcorn, pizza and frozen veg. The 900W microwave will cook your easy meals in no time.
A portable dishwasher is a big purchase, but it's one that'll drastically improve the dynamic in a college kitchen and save countless hours of washing the dishes. This 24'' dishwasher from GE can fit up to 12 place settings at a time, and it has three wash cycles and a delay start function.
A toaster is a kitchen essential for any student to make snacks, easy breakfasts and cheap meals. This toaster from Gevi is a great choice thanks to its four slots and LED touch control panel with different toasting modes.
Back to school: FAQs
When do back-to-school sales start?
A lot of our favorite retailers have already started their back-to-school sales, but you can expect to see them ramping up as we get nearer to the start of college. Keep an eye out on your favorite websites to see what deals they drop.
Who has the best back-to-school sale?
It's hard to say with so many different brands and retailers offering different discounts, so really it depends what you're looking for. Apple and HP are offering deals with laptops, Macs and iPads; Best Buy and Target have student hubs; and Amazon has rolled out deals across pretty much anything a college student could need.
How to get the best back to school deals
To get the best back to school deals there a few things that you can do in preparation to get the best bang for your buck.
- Bookmark this page. We will update this page regularly with the very best back-to-school deals on the best items, so bookmark this page and don't forget to check back in.
- Check your favorite retailer: Some retailers may be quietly slashing prices on some seasonal items, so check your favorite store's website to see if there's a back-to-school deal or sale happening.
- Do your research: While we can tell you the best deals we found, it never hurts to shop around. Draw up a list of what you need and check the prices on different sites - the price for the same item may differ across retailers.
- Search for coupons online. Want extra savings? Search for coupon codes online. We'll bring you the very best back-to-school deals – but coupon codes may not be advertised. Try checking sites like RetailMeNot and Coupons.com for codes you can enter at checkout if you're buying online.
- Download coupon-code browser extensions. Coupon-code browser extensions scan the internet and use buyer reports to bring you even more savings on hundreds of items. Check out joinhoney.com, a popular coupon-code browser extension.
- Get free shipping. Avoid paying for shipping! There may be free shipping codes on freeshipping.org that you can apply at checkout. Alternatively, buy online and opt to pick up in store, if you have the luxury of doing so.
- Leave items in your cart. If you're shopping online, don't check out right away! If you're not pressed for time, leave your items in your cart. To convince you to buy, some retailers will send you a coupon code by email after a few hours.
- Sign up for retailer emails. These emails can be a savings goldmine. From coupon codes to free gifts to sale previews, you may keep even more cash in your pocket if you sign up. Some brands will even offer a special introductory discount for new customers. Don't want a cluttered inbox? Open a separate email account just for deals!