Monday, July 27, 2009

Back to School Sales Tax Holidays

As you may already know, every year various states and local government agencies have designated “sales tax free” holiday weeks or weekends. Some states feature these holidays before storm season, but many of them do it to help parents cut down on back to school costs. The first round of sales tax free weekends actually begin later this week, so to help my readers find out if their state is participating, I have organized the following list of sales tax holidays based on when they begin.

This Weekend (July 31 – August 2)


Kicking off the back to school holiday, Georgia’s tax-free weekend begins this Thursday morning and runs through Sunday night. Any school supplies priced under $20 are exempt from the state’s sales tax, as well as clothing under $100, and computer equipment under $1,500. The rules on clothing purchases are somewhat specific and exclude most accessories. For more information check out the Georgia Department of Revenue’s website.


This Friday (July 31) and Saturday (August 1) in Mississippi all clothing and shoes under $100 will be exempt the state’s 7 percent sales tax. Unfortunately, the holiday does not include school supplies and this has angered many retailers. However, the legislature has no plans to make any changes to the current tax-free weekend. For more information, check with the Mississippi State Tax Commission.

Next Weekend (August 7 – August 9)

Iowa and Oklahoma

I decided to lump these two states together because they both have essentially the same tax free holiday on August 7th and 8th. Both states waive the sales tax on an all items of clothing valued at under $100. Unfortunately, the program only applies to clothing and not additional back to school supplies. For more information be sure to check the following links: Oklahoma and Iowa.


If you buy any of the following items in Alabama either next Friday or Sunday then you will not have to pay the state’s sales tax rates. Items of clothing under $100, computers costing under $750, random school supplies under $50, and books under $30. Click here to find out exactly what purchases are included and which are excluded.


The sales tax holiday that takes place in Louisiana next weekend seems to be pretty general. According to Louisiana Department of Revenue, nearly all purchases of personal, tangible property valued at under $2,500 are excluded from the states sales tax. This does not include vehicles or items for business use.

Missouri, New Mexico, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia

I’ve lumped these last six states participating in a sales tax free holiday next weekend together because they all have similar rules. The exclusion runs from Friday the 7th, through the night of Sunday the 9th. Although each state’s specific item limits vary widely, they each include clothing, school supplies, and computers. To see each state’s individual rules and limitations check out the following links: Missouri, New Mexico, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia.

Future Holidays


If you purchase qualifying clothing and footwear in Connecticut between August 16th and the 22nd then you will not need to pay their sales tax. Unlike other states, their limit on clothing expenses is $300, but to learn more about their specific rules check out this link.


The final tax-free holiday of the back to school season occurs in Texas between August 21st and 23rd. According to their Window on State Government, all qualifying clothing, backpack, and school supplies valued at under $100 are eligible for the holiday.

While I was researching this article, I also came across this great article on by Apryl Duncan with a handful of tax-free holiday shopping tips. If you live in one of the states mentioned above and are thinking of going out this weekend then I definitely recommend you check out Apryl’s article.

Blog Archive