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by the author of What School Should Have Taught You: 75 Skills You’ll Actually Use in Life
The New Year is here, and you’re likely taking a look at the calendar on your fridge thinking, “Oh yeah, I need to replace that.”
Is there a way to do this without dropping $25+, though? I think so. Here’s a bit of what I’ve learned about saving money on calendars and planners over the course of the past few Januarys.
Buy after the New Year.
You’re in luck here! It is after the New Year! This is one of the simplest steps that you can take to save money on calendars for your home.
In particular, check the calendar pop-up pagodas that tend to show up in malls across the nation around December. They’re now facing an upcoming rent payment and are really looking to move as much inventory as possible before they head out and do whatever else they do the remainder of the year (what do they do?). This can be part of your post-Christmas shopping stragegy.
If you head to one of these stores, you can often pick up a calendar to hang on your wall for up to 50% off what you would have paid a week ago. Planners are also reduced.
These discounts tend to increase as the year moves along. If you buy later in the month of January, you’ll typically save even more than if you bought at the beginning of January. If you can wait that long without being at risk of forgetting appointments, meetings, and the like, then this is an easy way to save a handful of dollars.
Don’t ever buy from an office supply store.
At least, don’t ever buy from a big box office supply store. The prices these guys charge on calendars is just plain stupid high. If you think that paying $40 for a calendar is a good idea, then be my guest. I think that’s a rip-off.
Even after the New Year, I don’t find the discounts on the desk calendars, planners, and the like to be that substantial at these locations. I understand that a planner costs more money to make than does a simple calendar you’re going to hang on your fridge, but $40? That’s crazy.
Instead, I would recommend checking out Walmart or Amazon.
The Dollar Store
I know we talk about this place quite a bit here on The Frugalite, but calendars are one thing that I’ve never found them to have a very good selection of. You can typically find some conglomeration of paper with dates printed out on it, but that’s pretty much all it is. You’ll spend money on a little notebook that’s too small for you to write anything on the date, and it’s really good for nothing other than saying, “Yep, today is Wednesday.”
You can use your phone for that.
Some of the best prices on planners that you’ll ever find are on Amazon. If you’re really not wanting to spend more than $10-15 to keep your year organized, they’ve got you covered. This is particularly handy as I’ve noticed that Walmart and Target tend to be nothing more than empty shelves for calendars at this time of year. I think this is due to their understanding that empty shelves don’t make money, so you may as well put a product on that spot that will generate income.
Amazon doesn’t have that issue, though, and you shouldn’t have a problem with finding a planner, wall calendar, or whatever type of dating tool you use to keep track of what you have scheduled for the day.
You can pick up wall calendars for about $10 each over here at the moment. If you try to avoid Amazon like the plague, this is an alternative. You can pick up daily planners here as well for as low as $16 too. They have a little bit of everything here, and you don’t even have to leave your home.
I’m not a huge fan of this option, but a lot of people like them, so we may as well include them. You can easily make your own calendar or planner with your home office printer and a 3-ring binder. Free things online typically mean that you are the product, so I would caution you to go ahead and purchase the calendar download if this is the option you’re looking at.
Etsy has a number of printable designs available for right around $2.
Save the date. Buy cheap calendars.
For many, having a calendar of some form is a necessity of life. You need to know when things are scheduled to happen, when you can schedule other things in the future, and it serves as a great reminder system of things (such as anniversaries) that you might otherwise forget.
But if you’re looking to save a few bucks on picking up a calendar or planner this year, hopefully, by checking out some of the above resources, you’ll better be able to do so.
What are your thoughts on the subject? Are there other great sources for finding cheap calendars that you know of? Let us know in the comment section.
Aden Tate is a regular contributor to TheOrganicPrepper.com and TheFrugalite.com. Aden runs a micro-farm where he raises dairy goats, a pig, honeybees, meat chickens, laying chickens, tomatoes, mushrooms, and greens. Aden has four published books, What School Should Have Taught You, The Faithful Prepper, An Arm and a Leg, The Prepper’s Guide to Post-Disaster Communications, and Zombie Choices. You can find his podcast The Last American on Preppers’ Broadcasting Network.
10 thoughts on “How to Save Money on Calendars and Planners”
The dollar stores usually have basic cheap calendars and planners. They aren’t fancy, but they fill the need. I usually buy the flat desk calendar pad and hang it on my fridge with hooks — plenty of room to write appointments and keep track of things.
I have to agree. Every year in December I pick up a bunch of calendars at the Dollar Tree. Like you, I also get the big desk calendar on regular (not shiny paper). I have strip magnets I take off last year’s and reglue onto the back of the new calendar. All the grand ladies get a cute calendar, all my seniors on Meals on Wheels get a new calendar. I’ve found the selection is great in November, not so much if you wait until December.
I too must have a Calendar to mark and remember important dates and things and also to serve as a Diary of my life.
I usually get 2 Calendars.
Calendar #1. I buy a big, beautiful Remington Wildlife Art Calendar from Ashgrove Marketing. $17.45 shipping included. I have bought one of these Calendars for the past 30 years probably. When the year is up I transfer important dates and commitment’s to the New Calendar and put the Old Calendar in a cardboard box with all the other Calendars. I take a Red Majic Marker and Mark around the outside of each important dates. If there is something that is temporary or I’m not sure it will be a permanent, yearly thing, I write it on a Post It Note and stick it on that Month. I save the big envelope that the New Calendar came in and put the Old Calendar in it for protection.
Calendar #2. My local Auto Parts Store gives away FREE (!!!) Antique Farm Tractors Calendar. They only cost the gas it takes to drive to the Store. Some Feed Stores, Farm Elevators, Farm Implement Stores give away free Calendars. That might be an option to look into.
In the middle of December Aldi had a special for a spiral wire bound yearlong planning calendar for $8.99. It’s about 3/8″ thick. Later in January my town mails free calendars to all residents that has lots of details on working with city services throughout the whole year. That pretty much covers it.
I haven’t bought a calendar or daily planner in years.
I’m on the mailing list of several charities. I usually end up with at least three calendars and/or daily planners each year. I give the extras to other people
Of course I send them a donation. Never have to pay crazy prices for calendars. And some of the ones I receive are quite attractive.
To add; Our church puts out calendars each year in English and in Spanish.
As someone with organization and memory challenges I have found that the original bullet journal system (https://bulletjournal.com/) works very well for me. It’s a customizable journal/planner system that only requires a notebook and pen and can be as simple or as complex as you need it. The gentleman that came up with the system has a book that goes into great detail about it that I was able to get from the library. Also a simple tutorial that was really helpful for me to get started was from Jessica here: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=jkZEEQG6IVE
Bought a large wall calendar with 1.75″ square date spaces plus 6×6″ note area & small yearly calendar on the side of each month at Dollar ($1.25) Tree. That serves as the family calendar in the kitchen, and at the end of each month that page is tossed. I also bought a 2022-2023 Planner (I think it’s under student planners) at Amazon for $4.27 with 2 pages for each week. That’s just for me where all pertinent info on appts, repairs, orders, weather, family birthdays, weddings, births , garden info, etc is kept for the entire year. Easy to review at the end of the year for recurring dates, I remove the 2022 pages and use them for scrap. Been doing this is one form or another for over 20 years – it works for me
My Catholic Church hands out FREE professionally made calendars in December every year. I grab two, one for the home and one for my office.
I have saved favorite calendars for years and store in a special cabinet drawer for just that reason. At end of each year, i check the perpetual calendar to see which years are the same. Example: 2022 and 2011 were the same, 2023 and 2017 are the same. Haven’t bought a new calendar in years this way. Do get a freebie calendar now and then, from a business. Those calendars where I have marked dates are fun to read again. For new appointments I just use a different colored pen. Usually get a nice planner as a gift at Christmas but if don’t get one in late January when on sale. Happened this year but got a gift card to Hobby Lobby and found a nice planner on-line on sale for $12.
Dollar store wall calendar here. I buy in August-October before the selection is picked over. It’s really just a quick way to see at a glance what the date is. I also have one of the tiny calendars (that was denigrated in the article) that I keep in my purse for writing down appointments. One thing I didn’t see mentioned was a markerboard calendar. It’s really what I use to keep myself organized and is infinitely reusable. I’m not anti-tech, but I don’t love having all my eggs in one basket, so to speak (cell phone.) I’ve seen people lose and break cell phones and their whole world comes crashing down because their whole life is on the phone.