AUSTIN) — Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar is reminding shoppers they can save money on clothes and school supplies during the state’s sales tax holiday on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 11-13.
State law exempts sales tax on qualified items — such as clothing, footwear, school supplies and backpacks — priced below $100, saving shoppers about $8 on every $100 they spend. The dates of the sales tax holiday and list of tax-exempt items are set by the Texas Legislature.
“As Texans prepare for the back-to-school bell, this is the perfect time to take advantage of the opportunity to save money on everything from blue jeans to ballpoint pens,” Hegar said. “As the father of three, I know how these expenses can add up.”
The Comptroller’s office estimates that shoppers will save $136 million in state and local sales tax during this sales tax holiday.
Apparel and school supplies that may be purchased tax free are listed on the Comptroller’s website at TexasTaxHoliday.org.
Only the school supplies on this list priced under $100 qualify for exemption from tax during the sales tax holiday.
- Blackboard chalk
- Book bags
- Cellophane tape
- Composition books
- Folders – expandable, pocket, plastic, and manila
- Glue, paste and paste sticks
- Index cards
- Index card boxes
- Legal pads
- Lunch boxes
- Markers (including dry erase markers)
- Paper – loose leaf ruled notebook paper, copy paper, graph paper, tracing paper, manila paper, colored paper, poster board, and construction paper
- Pencil boxes and other school supply boxes
- Pencil sharpeners
- Writing tablets
* For kits of school supplies that contain exempt items, as well as taxable ones, the taxability depends on the value of exempt or taxable items in it. There is no limit on the quantity of school supplies in a kit, but if the value of the exempt items is more than the taxable ones, the kit is exempt. If the value of the taxable items is more than the exempt ones, then the kit is taxable.
During the annual sales tax holiday, qualifying items can be purchased tax free online or by telephone, mail, custom order or any other means (including in-store purchases) when either:
- the item is both delivered to, and paid for by, the customer during the exemption period; or,
- the customer orders and pays for the item, and the seller accepts the order during the exemption period for immediate shipment, even if delivery is made after the exemption period ends.
Texas’ sales tax holiday weekend has been an annual event since 1999.
Online Purchases and Telephone Orders
During the holiday you can buy qualifying items in-store, online, by telephone, mail, custom order, or any other means. The sale of the item must take place during the specific period. The purchase date is easy to determine when the purchase is made in-store but becomes more complicated with remote purchases. The purchaser must have given the consideration for the item during the period even if the item may not be delivered until after the period is over.
For example, if a purchaser enters their credit card information in an online shopping website on Sunday Aug. 13, 2023 at 5:00 p.m.to purchase qualifying school supplies, but the school supplies will not be shipped until Friday Aug. 18, 2023 and will not arrive until Tuesday Aug. 22, the purchase will still qualify for the exemption. However, if the charge to your credit card is declined by the payment processor at 11:00 p.m. on Sunday Aug. 13, 2023 and the purchaser does not resubmit payment until Monday Aug. 14, the purchase is taxable.