Top ten items to purchase at a dollar store

Dollar stores can be a treasure-trove of exciting opportunities. They can allow you to extend your shopping dollar and purchase items that can be very helpful. While there are certain dollar store items that you should avoid, here are the top ten items to purchase at a dollar store:
  1. Wrapping Paper - Through the course of a year, we need wrapping paper for a number of events. This includes weddings, baby showers, birthdays, anniversaries and holidays.  Instead of spending $3.00 to $7.00 on roll of standard wrapping paper at your local gift shop, you can save a lot of money purchasing wrapping paper at a dollar store.
  2. Gift Bags - Gift bags can be very expensive. However, some people prefer to use them over wrapping paper. Dollar stores often carry gift bags in a variety of sizes and colors.  You can save a considerable amount of money on one single gift bag purchased at a dollar store.
  3. Greeting Cards - Today, there are few greeting cards that are available for less than $2.00 each.  Shopping for your birthday cards, sympathy cards, graduation cards and holiday cards at the dollar store can save as little as $1.00 per card or as much as $3.00 per card depending on what you are purchasing. Many dollar stores offer greeting cards for the low price of 2 for $1.00.
  4. Shampoo - Regardless of the name brand associated with shampoo, it is almost all comprised of the same basic ingredients. Instead of spending $3.00 to $5.00 on a bottle of shampoo, purchase it at the dollar store for only $1.00.  Depending on how much your family uses, you might be surprised at how much savings you will see in a year.
  5. Glassware - If you are assembling a gift basket for a new bride or for a holiday gift, you can find a variety of glassware at a dollar store. For only one dollar you can purchase wine glasses, cocktail glasses and more. These make a very nice gift or you can even use them in your own home to add to your own set.
  6. Pens and Pencils - Back to school time means purchasing pens, pencils and erasers for each of your children.  Instead of purchasing packages at your local office supply store, you can purchase packages of 10 or more of each at your dollar store. These are generally of reasonable quality and these larger packages can help extend your budget.
  7. Party Favors - If you are planning a birthday party, anniversary or other similar get-together and are interested in providing party favors, you may find just what you are looking for at a dollar store. In addition, you can purchase disposable table cloths and other "go-with's" for decorating purposes. Use caution purchasing paper plates, napkins and plastic silverware in a dollar store as you may find that it is not as cost effective as you think.
  8. Candles - Whether it is birthday candles, tapers, scented candles or tea light candles, you can get great bargains at a dollar store.  In some cases, this could save you as much as 50% off the typical cost.  Over time, if you use a number of candles, this is a great way to save money.
  9. Photo Albums and Frames - Not only do photo albums and framed pictures make wonderful gifts, they are almost universally used by everyone. Nearly all dollar stores carry a wide variety of albums and frames that are suitable for home use or for gift giving.
  10. Hard candy - Whether your family enjoys hard candy, or you use it as filler in gift baskets, gift mugs or more, hard candy is almost always a great buy at a dollar store.  Most dollar stores offer a wide variety of hard candy including some sugar-free varieties. These are typically a better buy than those you would purchase at a department or grocery store.
If you know what items typically cost, there are numerous ways you can save money at a dollar store. These are the top ten items you can purchase at a dollar store that can add up to considerable savings over the year.

Image credit: By U.S. Government. [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons