Dollar store vs. big box stores

Discussion in Office Supplies started by andrew320 • Jun 15, 2012.

  1. andrew320

    andrew320Active Member

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    Every autumn, I purchase the necessary office items, such as Pens, pads of paper, etc. and for all of the things I have to buy I go to one of our many dollar stores (most of the time I go to Dollarama). I don't see the sense is wasting $10 for paper when I can get the exact same paper for $1 at Dollarama.

    For these basic items, do you go to your local dollar store or a store like Staples?
     
  2. FlipKup

    FlipKupMember

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    Dollar Store.

    Staples really overprices their brand name items. Sometimes, you can tell that there is no difference in quality between what you can purchase at the Dollar Store, and what you can purchase at Staples. For everything that doesn't look up to par, head to Staples - for everything else, just hit up the Dollar Store. Take it from a thrifty college student!
     
  3. ssamcd

    ssamcdMember

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    I would go to the Dollar store for those basics. You can get a lot of name brand also at the Dollar Store if you watch what comes in. They go very quick. They must buy overstock from companies to get the name brands. Paper supplies if they had them in stock I would definitely get at the Dollar Store. You can save so much money.
     
  4. Sandra Piddock

    Sandra PiddockExpert

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    I now buy all my stationery supplies from pound shops, which are the UK equivalent of dollar stores. The most spectacular bargains I've found are in photographic paper - it's just as good as the premium brands, for a fraction of the cost. When I was studying for my two degrees as a mature student, and having to print off notes, essays and dissertations, it was cheaper to buy my printer paper in bulk at Staples, but now I only use a little paper each month, I get it from Poundland.
     
  5. Adeal4u

    Adeal4uActive Member

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    I like the dollar store for my stationary supplies because they're cheaper than going to Staples. Sometimes the quality of the products offered at the dollar store isn't on par with the name brand stuff. I do a lot of art and I usually buy my makers and pens from staples, but I'll buy blank paper from the dollar store. I try to combine both shops instead of choosing one or the other.
     
  6. meryliz

    merylizMember

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    Dollarama just started selling $3 items, so some office supplies might start to cost the same or possibly more than what you can find at big box stores. There are still some great bargains at Dollarama, like Post-Its, Sharpies, Moleskin knock-offs, calculators, staplers, and so on. But like ssamcd said, the great stuff go quickly, so timing is important.

    Also remember that buying in bulk (of brands that you like) from a store like Staples will save you in the long run. For example, I had a preference for Bic's "round stic" fine point pens when I was at school. I bought a small box of 12 for $3-4 in the fall of 2009, and I still have 3 unused pens! I bought a pack of 5 fancier-looking pens at Dollarama and they were all in the garbage within a year. Also, the ink clumped up frequently.

    I say both dollar stores and big box stores have their own pros and cons, so figure out what supplies are most important for you and compare prices.
     
    #6Aug 10, 2012
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2012
  7. ktrevino93

    ktrevino93New Member

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    I would say Dollar store. I don't know about Dollarama, but the dollar stores I go to are usually really good. They seem to have everything I need. I've never been disappointed with my purchases either, I don't really see how you can go wrong with pens, paper, pencils, etc..
     
  8. BarelyHangingOn

    BarelyHangingOnActive Member

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    I caught a news clip on CNN last month about how people are turning to Dollar Stores to save money and how it is working. Dollar Stores are taking up the slack in the retail market from the fallen department or box stores and making a go of it by offering more and more variety of items at really discounted prices. Not only that but many of them are offering brand name items at discounted prices. We have started to go to one for picking up all of our paper towels, napkins, toilet paper, batteries etc. The accessories if you will that we use on a daily basis. The savings are great.
     
  9. ACSAPA

    ACSAPAWell-Known Member

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    I buy school supplies at Walmart, 17 cent spiral notebooks, 15 cent folders, 50 cent composition books, $2 reams of copy paper, They usually have the sales a few weeks before school starts. I start my back to school shopping in the middle of summer vacation when stores start putting out school supplies.
     
  10. Pat

    PatWell-Known Member

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    Right now is a good time to stock up for the year for school supplies and office supplies. I use notebooks for my job so I get pencils, pens and notebooks to have later in the year. When you buy paper from the dollar store be aware of the size of the paper pack, you may only be getting 100 sheets of paper in the pack.
     
  11. Pocs

    PocsActive Member

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    Dollar store for me! I do a lot more shopping there than school and office supplies. Plus if you need anything in bulk, you can order it online and have it shipped to the Dollar store near you, for free. They have a good selection of snacks also.
     
  12. gina121

    gina121Active Member

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    If the brand and quality are the exact same, then the dollar/pound stores are what I'd choose too. In fact, when it comes to paper and stationery, I don't see much difference in quality, except when it comes to the specific signature pens! Anything that writes is fine by me.
     
  13. saizo6

    saizo6Active Member

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    I usually shop at the dollar store but during back to school time you can find some really good deals at the big box stores. I've purchased notebooks for .20 each and paper for about the same price. That's the only time I'll get my supplies there though (I like to stock up on everything so it can last for quite a while).
     
  14. hunysukle

    hunysukleActive Member

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    I don't have a problem buying paper from dollar stores, but their pens aren't so great. Most the time the pens are junk. I would much rather buy pens and other office supplies at big box stores during their back-to-school savings season because you can get some great prices that you wouldn't during other times of the year.
     
  15. Zaturo

    ZaturoMember

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    I find the paper at the Dollar Tree to be very thin and overall doesn't work well with pens. I've yet to find paper like the ones at an art supply store with those thick layered papers. The old saying remains the same, you get what you pay for. Hmm, I suppose Staples does overprice their supplies. The prices on their generic laptops are pretty crazy too.
     
  16. ACSAPA

    ACSAPAWell-Known Member

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    It's true, the drawing paper at the dollar store feels cheap and thin. I'm obsessed with this new paper at Walmart called mixed media paper. It's $10 a pad but it's thick and textured and you can use it with any media from ink to watercolor to collage. Good art paper is worth spending more on, especially if you sell your art.
     
  17. Mayvin

    MayvinActive Member

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    It seems like I'm at the dollar store every other day and things like envelopes, pens, pencils ect... are a great buy. And it's true
    why spend more when you can get the same quality of product for less? It would be great if they sold a good pack of printing paper.
     
  18. jodiann12

    jodiann12Active Member

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    I agree with ACSAPA. I noticed that Walmart offers great deals on stationery supplies, but unfortunately for me who lives in Jamaica, you need to be physically present at the store to take at advantage of these prices. But if I'm not able to be present at a Walmart store, the better option would be the dollar store. I don't like to shop at Staples online or offline. The items are overpriced.
     
  19. Rzashida

    RzashidaActive Member

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    I prefer the dollar trees because they are so easy to find . They do have great office product throught out the year but the best right before school starts. I homeschool my children so i also find it wonderful that I can find *teaching material as well.
     
  20. nwitt

    nwittActive Member

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    I thing most items (a big box of pens, a pack of sticky notes) are much more affordable if purchased at the Dollar Store. That being said, you do need to be careful and look at prices. Some items are way overpriced at the Dollar Store, because they take advantage of individuals who shop there for other items that offer a bargain.

    Around the beginning of the school year, places like Staples and Walmart do run great deals - like 7 cent notebooks? You can't beat that!
     
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