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Five Below vs. the dollar stores: Who's better?

Five Below vs. the dollar stores: Who’s better?

Theo Thimou April 13, 2016
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Image Credit: Five Below
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In the world of dollar stores, there are two kinds of players. There are the true dollar stores like Dollar Tree and 99 Cents Only. And then there are places like Dollar General and Family Dollar, which are dollar stores in name only. The merchandise is generally low priced but doesn’t necessarily have to be $1 or less.

You can count Five Below firmly in the latter category. The discount chain, which has more than 430 stores in 27 states, sells a variety of fun stuff for teens, pre-teens and their parents all at the price point of $5 or less. Hence the store’s name!

Read more: 6 best dollar store buys

Five Below stores are separated into categories like Style, Room, Sports, Media, Crafts, Party, Candy and Now (aka seasonal goods).

Popular products include cell phone cases and chargers, remote control cars, licensed collectibles, yoga pants, graphic tees, nail polishes, baseballs and soccer balls, candy and seasonal items.

Here are five reasons why Five Below might be a fit for your budget and lifestyle!

1. Great tech-related products

Five Below vs. the dollar stores: Who's better?

Here are some great accessories for your phone, tablet, fitness tracker and other devices!

  • Galaxy s7 & s7 edge cases
  • Echo bluetooth speakers
  • iPhone cases
  • Replacement band for Fitbit Flex
  • iPhone 6 screen protector
  • Tough cases for iPad, iPad Air and iPad Mini
  • Headrest mount for iPad
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles kids headphones
  • Pink Chandelier tech accessories
  • Universal flex phone mount
  • 6600 mAh battery banks

2. Five Below lets you easily set up a fundraiser for your favorite non-profit

The store makes it simple to set up what they call a “FUNdRAISER” day for your favorite charity. Working with your local store, you simply agree on a date and time to get the initiative off the ground. Then you promote the day and time with flyers around your neighborhood. Whenever someone during your date and time and shows the flyer, 10% of their purchase is donated to your favorite non-profit. It’s that easy to get started doing something good!

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3. Great entry-level exercise gear

Five Below vs. the dollar stores: Who's better?

Looking for some fun and colorful additions to your exercise routine? You can’t go wrong with these items…

  • Smartphone arm band
  • 6″ massage ball
  • Yoga mats
  • Exercise ball
  • Weighted jump rope
  • Wilson basketball
  • Frisbees (only $1!)
  • NFL team footballs
  • Fitness gloves
  • Pilates ring
  • Neon softie baseballs (just $2.50!)

4. Five Below does a lot of charitable work

Like it competitor Toys R Us, Five Below also sponsors Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation and has a pin-up program offering $1 paper lemons with all the money going to the childhood cancer charity.

Here’s another initiative: Returning for 2016 is the popular #5BAlexSelfie drive. Just snap a pic of yourself with the lemonade stand at Five Below and the company will donate an additional $1 towards the cause (up to $5,000).

Finally, Five Below has a longstanding partnership with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Their annual fall fundraiser has raised $900,000 for the fight to end childhood cancer.

5. Great fashion

Five Below vs. the dollar stores: Who's better?

Looking for great fashion for the beach or licensed products from Disney, Marvel and more? They’ve got it!

  • Spring dresses (sizes S-XL)
  • Star Wars classic logo tee (Young men’s sizes sizes S-XL)
  • Jurassic World dinosaur kids tee
  • Minions tees
  • SpongeBob “I woke up like this” kids tee
  • Deadpool tees
  • Star Wars Kylo Ren tee
  • Star Wars Boba Fett tee

Read more: Dollar Tree now sells $1 ribeye steaks

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Theo Thimou is director of content for ClarkHoward.com. He has co-written 2 books with Clark Howard, including the #1 New York Times bestseller Clark Howard's Living Large in Lean Times.
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