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Florida tax-free weekend 2021: dates, duration, affected items and price limits

Parents will be given discounts on clothing, classroom supplies and even computer equipment to help them prepare for the return of in-person learning in the fall.

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Florida tax-free weekend 2021: dates, durations, affected items and price limits

Lawmakers in Florida decided to dramatically alter the state’s normal tax holiday offerings in the hope of helping to stimulate the local economy and to provide discounts for struggling residents.

Earlier this year a new initiative, the Florida ‘Freedom Week’, gave residents from 1 to 7 July to buy event tickets, certain sporting supplies and camping equipment to celebrate the loosening of covid-19 restrictions.

Following that the final tax-free period of the year has just begun with the back-to-school tax holiday providing some great deals for parents. From 12.01am on 31 July to 11.59 on 9 August shoppers will save 6% plus any local tax on purchases needed to prepare for the new school year in the fall.

What is included in the Florida back-to-school tax holiday?

The pandemic has been an incredibly tough time for families all across America. Many have suffered a loss of income, or lost employment entirely, and with the pandemic unemployment benefits set to end federally on 6 September families may soon lose another stream of income.

To help lessen the blow and allow parents to prepare for the return of in-classroom teaching in the fall the latest tax holiday will concentrate on schooling. The following items will be tax-free, up to these thresholds:

- Children's clothing and apparel, up to a maximum value of $60 per item

- School supplies, up to a maximum value of $15 per item

- Personal computers and related accessories, although only the first $1,000 is eligible for the tax exemption

There are some exceptions to these broad categories which can be found on the Florida Department of Revenue website. The price thresholds given here only apply to the cost of each individual item. Parents could buy multiple coats priced at $55, but none worth $65 and take advantage of the tax exemption.

Can I use coupons with this tax exemption?

Unlike most sales, there’s nothing stopping you from taking advantage of coupons to lower the price even further. The coupon will be applied first, and then the sales tax will be waived from the remaining amount.

Even better, you can use coupons to qualify items that would otherwise be above the price threshold. For example if you had a coupon offering a 10% discount you would be able to get the tax exemption on an item of clothing that is normally priced at $65, because the coupon would bring the price below the $60 threshold.