Preparing the children for the new school year can be costly. Everything from new school shoes, uniform, books and everything else in between can soon add up.

Here are five tips to help you cut the cost of school uniforms and keep some money in your current account:

1. Start early
Don’t wait until the week before school to start making purchases or your bank account will bear the brunt of it. That’s what the majority of parents do, and it only adds to the frustration. Going to school supply shops and being faced with long queues of whining children is not fun, so start early and make life easier for you and your children.

2. Save towards it
All those purchases really can add up,and if your child has had a growth spurt during the summer holidays they may need a completely new school wardrobe.

One way to soften the blow is to save towards it. If you put some money in your current account every on – even as little as £10 a month, it will at least amount to £120 if you start saving from summer to summer, and that may cover the full cost of your purchases and leave some savings for next year.

3. Shop wisely
Shopping online is not something to be sniffed at when it comes to buying school uniform. If you want to be sure about measurements beforehand, take your child to get measured and then scour the internet for some savings.

You’ll have the added benefit of avoiding those long queues.

4. Stop the impulse buying
Every child is a magnet to brand new shiny things. It can be difficult to keep saying no when they’re so excited about wearing something to school, or getting a new pencil case, for example.

You can avoid this by making a list of everything you need before hitting the shops (assuming you couldn’t shop online!) and agreeing beforehand that no extra purchases will be made.

As a treat, you can agree to go for an ice cream or light lunch if there is enough change left over.

5. Second isn’t always second best
If you have children that are similar in age, be sure to take a good look through their uniform before you hit the shops.

Could they have a next to new blazer or jumper that their younger sibling could wear,for example? Every little helps and you can keep a lot more money in the bank by cutting out unnecessary spending.

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