Texas Tax-Free Weekend: 5 things to know before you shop


Highlights

In most cities, including Austin, shoppers will save 8.25 cents of tax for each dollar spent.

Many retailers are marking down popular items to lure you through their doors.

Texas Tax-Free Weekend runs this Friday through Sunday, offering parents a chance to save a few bucks while stocking up on back-to-school essentials.

Over the course of the three days, the state anticipates Texans will avoid paying $87 million in sales tax. In most cities, including Austin, shoppers will save 8.25 cents of tax for each dollar spent.

Many retailers are also marking down popular items to lure you through their doors, which means even bigger savings in many cases.

Before you hit the mall, here are five things you should know about Texas Tax-Free Weekend:

What you’ll spend. The National Retail Federation anticipates the average American with children in grades kindergarten through 12th will spend $687.72 this year. That’s the second-highest number on record.

Not everything is included. Only eligible school supplies and clothing priced at under $100 each are tax free. (See a full list at texastaxholiday.org.) You’ll still pay taxes on big-ticket items such as computers.

Extended hours. Most Central Texas shopping centers, as well as standalone big-box retailers such as Kohl’s, are adjusting their hours this weekend.

Barton Creek Square

  • Friday: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • Saturday: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • Sunday: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Lakeline Mall

  • Friday: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • Saturday: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • Sunday: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Tanger Outlets San Marcos

  • Friday: 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • Saturday: 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • Sunday: 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

San Marcos Premium Outlets

  • Friday: 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • Saturday: 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • Sunday: 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Round Rock Premium Outlets

  • Friday: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • Saturday: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • Sunday: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Shop early, shop late. Take advantage of those extended hours to avoid the crowds. Midday is the busiest time, retailers say, so plan on going first thing in the morning or late at night if you want some breathing room.

Head online. The tax holiday, which got its start in 1999, isn’t limited to brick-and-mortar shops. Online retailers shouldn’t be collecting sales tax on eligible items this weekend, either, according to the state.



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