I Wish We Could Payless

In my opinion Payless Shoe stores are the best thing to happen to girls who like shoes (me!) and who don’t want to pay through the toes for fashionable footwear (me again!). Sadly, though, I cannot partake of Payless’s bounty because while they carry wide shoes, Payless does not carry double-wide shoes. I am a 8.5EE. What’s also sad is that my tween daughters, who like shoes as much as I do, have inhertited my double-wide feet.

When they were younger and their feet weren’t as wide, we could get away with wide shoes from Wish.com – they were great for their fashion and my budget, especially with the girls’ feet growing so quickly. They usually needed new shoes, because of sizing, not because a pair wore out.

These days, I still try to be budget-conscious about shoes outside of Payless options but that isn’t always 100% possible, given our special-needs feet. Usually, when my girls need shoes, we’ll visit this old-fashioned shoe store in a nearby town–a store that specializes in “hard-to-fit feet.” (That’s the wording they use in their Yellow Pages ad, I swear.) We get their feet measured, and we buy what we need. I usually spend a couple hundred dollars on shoes. Not great, but I know that when I need replacements, I’ve got to get creative with my financing.

Thankfully, the girls’ foot growth has slowed down, so these days when I need to replace shoes , it’s because they wore out, not because the girls’ have grown out of them.

I try to limit those $100+ pairs of shoes to once-a-year purchases, so when I’m in the market for those replacements, I’ll usually take the name of the shoe–manufacturer and style name–and plug it into Google so I can find online stores that carry the same shoes and, hopefully, at cheaper prices. So far, so good.

I’ve had great luck with Onlineshoes.com, which I found through Google. Here, I was able to find my 11-year-old, Jane’s shoes, a Saucony walking sneaker, which I’d spent about $150 on for her original pair. I just ordered my second replacement pair from Onlineshoes.com last week, and I spent $64.99. Obviously, that’s a significant savings over what I’d spent for the first pair. Best of all, Onlineshoes.com offers free shipping.

For my 9-year-old, Annie, who is also wearing Saucony sneakers–but the runnning kind–we’d spent $120 for hers at that traditional shoe store. Thanks once again to Google, I found the same Saucony sneakers at Shoebuy.com for a lot less. Well, they were $84.95, not exactly cheap, but cheaper than $120.

So while I hate having to spend this much on footwear for the three of us, at least I’ve figured out a way to spend a little less on shoes for our hard-to-fit feet.

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