Oklahoma's Sales Tax Holiday Weekend Underway

Friday, August 5th 2011, 9:41 am
By: News On 6

Emory Bryan, News On 6

TULSA, Oklahoma -- It's back to school time, and this weekend it's the holiday from sales tax statewide. It's not just on back to school clothes, but almost any piece of clothing that costs less than $100.

Oklahoma started the tax holiday to compete with surrounding states that already had one. Now it's become a big part of what stores and families count on this time of year.

Back to school shopping involves lots of choices, but for many people, the decision of when to buy was easy. 

"Have to buy stuff anyway, so it's a perfect time," said shopper Tamie Provinsal. "On yeah, great, I have three kids, so it's a big help."

Most every article of clothing under $100 dollars is tax free in Oklahoma this weekend. That's why many families wait until now to make the bulk of their fall clothing purchases.

It doesn't have to be clothing for children - or for back to school - to qualify.

"We're doing some clothing shopping and getting new shoes, and getting things to play with," said shopper Amanda Vaughan. 

The tax free weekend has become another boost for the clothing business during what was already a busy time.

At Trippetts shoe store, manager Bill Young says it's what makes or breaks the business.

"It's back to school. Back to school is where we do our business, and if we didn't have back to school we wouldn't be here," Young said.

The big stores make a big push to bring in customers - extending the discounts of a sale on top of the savings on the sales tax.

"A lot of people take half days on the Friday to take advantage of the tax free to capitalize, and then Saturday and Sunday, we'll be busy," said Stephanie Davidson, Target.

Stores are expecting the crowd of shoppers to build as the weekend continues and for some it's become a weekend that rivals the shopping right after Thanksgiving.

"The tax holiday helps; it's a real boost at the beginning of August," said Bill Young, Trippetts Shoe Store manager.

The holiday covers articles of clothing or footwear "designed to be worn on or about the human body" that cost less than $100.

The sales tax holiday does NOT apply to the sale of any accessories, special clothing or footwear primarily designed for athletic activity or protective use that is not normally worn except when used for athletic activity or protective use, or to the rental of clothing or footwear.

If you have questions about what is allowed, visit the Oklahoma Tax Commission web site.