Sales Tax 101 States

2020 Sales Tax Holidays

by Sarah Craig

Last updated August 2020

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Every year various states offer sales tax holidays and/or tax-free weekends, which delight shoppers and store owners, but can pose a challenge when it comes to tax collection.

Below we’ve outlined the 2020 sales tax holidays with guidelines for each state and what items are actually tax-free. One thing to note, not all states hold sales tax holidays. Some are annual and recur under legislation, while others that are non-annual require legislation each year. 

List of All Sales Tax Holidays in 2020

Find your state and mark your calendars for tax free shopping (and selling)!

Alabama Sales Tax Holidays 2020

February 21-22, 2020  – Alabama Severe Weather Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday

Note: Alabama local areas can opt out of participating in the Severe Weather Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday. See an updated list of participating Alabama cities and counties here.

  • Severe weather preparedness items costing $60 or less are not taxable during the sales tax holiday. Examples include batteries (including cell phones and chargers), duct tape, self-powered self-contained first-aid kit, non-electric can opener.
  • Two exceptions are portable generators and power cords used to provide light or communications or preserve food in the event of a power outage – these items are tax exempt during the holiday as long as they cost $1,000 or less.

July 17-19, 2020 – Alabama Back to School Sales Tax Holiday.  Here is a list of participating cities. 

  • Clothing with a sales price of $100 or less per item is not taxable during the sales tax holiday; the holiday excludes clothing items considered accessories or protective/recreational equipment such as swimwear.
  • Single purchases of computers, computer software, and school computer equipment costing less than $750 are not taxable.
  • Noncommercial purchases of school supplies, school art supplies and school instructional materials with a sales price of $50 or less per item are not taxable.
  • Noncommercial book purchases with a sales price of $30 or less per book are not taxable.

Arkansas Sales Tax Holidays 2020

August 1-2, 2020 – Arkansas Back to School Sales Tax Holiday

  • Clothing and footwear under $100 per item is not taxable during the sales tax holiday.
  • Clothing accessories or equipment, school art supplies, school instructional materials and school supplies under $50 per item are not taxable during the holiday.

Connecticut Sales Tax Holidays 2020

August 16-22, 2020 – Connecticut Back to School Sales Tax Holiday

  • Most clothing and footwear that costs less than $100 per item is not taxable during the holiday; however the sales tax holiday excludes athletic or protective clothing, jewelry, handbags, luggage, umbrellas, wallets, watches and “similar items.”

Florida Sales Tax Holidays 2020

May 29-June 4, 2020 – Florida Hurricane Preparedness

  • This 7-day holiday covers the purchase of items related to hurricane preparedness, including batteries, self-powered lights, self-powered radios, tarpaulins, ground anchoring systems, portable generators, fuel tanks, food storage coolers, and reusable ice.

August 7-9, 2020Florida Back to School Sales Tax Holiday

  • Clothing, and school supplies, sales price of $1,000 or less
  • The first $1,000 of the sale price of computers. Any sale price above $1,000 is taxed as normal
  • Face masks qualify for the 2020 Florida back-to-school sales tax holiday. “Clothing,” for purposes of the holiday, is defined as any article of apparel intended to be worn on or about the human body. As a result, cloth and surgical face masks qualify as exempt items during the holiday.

Iowa Sales Tax Holidays 2020

August 7-8, 2020 – Iowa Back to School Sales Tax Holiday

  • Clothing and footwear with a sale price of less than $100 is not taxable during the holiday; However the sales tax holiday excludes accessories, clothing rentals, athletic and protective clothing.

Louisiana Sales Tax Holidays 2020

The state of Louisiana has suspended its three sales tax holidays (Back to School, Disaster Preparedness, Second Amendment) until July 1, 2025.


Maryland Sales Tax Holidays 2020

February 16-18, 2020 – Maryland Green Sales Tax Holiday

  • Energy Star™ products including air conditioners, washers and dryers, furnaces, heat pumps, standard-size refrigerators, compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFL), light-emitting diode (LED) light bulbs, dehumidifiers, programmable thermostats, and solar water  heathers are not taxable.

August 9-15, 2020 – Maryland Back to School Sales Tax Holiday

  • Clothing and footwear less with a sale price of $100 or less are not taxable as well as the first $40 on backpacks/book bags. This excludes accessories.

Massachusetts Sales Tax Holidays 2020

August 29-30, 2020

  • Retail items of up to $2,500, purchased in Massachusetts for personal use on these two days, will be exempt from sales tax.

The following do not qualify for the sales tax holiday exemption: Motor vehicles Motorboats Telecommunications services Gas Steam Electricity Tobacco products Marijuana or marijuana products Alcoholic beverages, and any single item whose price is more than $2,500.


Mississippi Sales Tax Holidays 2020

July 31-August 1, 2020 – Mississippi Back to School Sales Tax Holiday 

  • Clothing or footwear with a sales price of under $100 per item are not taxable; excludes accessories, rentals, skis, swim fins or skates.

August 28-August 30, 2020 – Mississippi Firearms and Ammunition Sales (2nd Amendment) Tax Holiday

  • Firearms, ammunition and hunting supplies, including archery equipment are non-taxable.

Missouri Sales Tax Holidays 2020*

April 19-25, 2020 – Missouri Energy Efficiency Sales Tax Holiday

  • Retail sales of Energy Star certified new appliances up to $1,500 per appliance are not taxable.

August 7-9, 2020 – Missouri Back to School Sales Tax Holiday

  • Noncommercial purchases of clothing with a taxable value of $100 or less per item are not taxable; This excludes accessories.
  • School supplies up to $50 per purchase are not taxable.
  • Computer software with a taxable value of $350 or less is not taxable.
  • Personal computers and computer peripherals up to $1500 are not taxable.
  • Graphing calculators with a taxable value of $150 or less are not taxable.

Localities may opt-out of the Missouri Back to School Sales Tax Holiday. If less than 2% of a Missouri retailer’s merchandise qualifies for the sales tax holiday, then the retailer must offer a tax refund in lieu of a tax holiday.


New Mexico Sales Tax Holidays 2020

August 7-9, 2020 – New Mexico Back to School Gross Receipts Tax Holiday

  • Footwear and clothing with a sales price of less than $100 per item; Excludes accessories and athletic or protective clothing.
  • School supplies with a sales price of less than $30 per item are not taxable.
  • Computers with a sales price of $1,000 or less per item are not taxable.
  • Computer peripherals with a sales price of $500 or less per item are not taxable.
  • Book bags, backpacks, maps and globes with a sales price of less than $100 per item are not taxable.
  • Handheld calculators with a sales price of less than $200 per item are not taxable.

November 28, 2020Small Business Saturday Gross Receipts Tax Holiday

New Mexico holds a gross receipts tax (their version of sales tax) holiday on the Saturday after Thanksgiving every year. Many items are non-taxable as long as the sale price is under $500. Items include:

  • Accessories, including jewelry, handbags, book bags, backpacks, luggage, wallets, watches and similar items worn or carried on or about the human body
  • Sporting goods and camping equipment
  • Tools used for home improvement, gardening and automotive maintenance and repair
  • Books, journals, paper, writing instruments, art supplies, greeting cards and postcards
  • Works of art, including any painting, drawing, print, photograph, sculpture, pottery or ceramics, carving, textile, basketry, artifact, natural specimen, rare book, authors’ papers, objects of historical or technical interest or other article of intrinsic cultural value
  • Floral arrangements and indoor plants
  • Cosmetics and personal grooming items
  • Musical instruments
  • Cookware and small home appliances for residential use
  • Bedding, towels and bath accessories
  • Furniture
  • A toy or game that is a physical item
  • A video game or video game console and any associated accessories for the video game console
  • Home electronics such as computers, phones, tablets, stereo equipment and related electronics accessories

Retailers are not required to participate in New Mexico sales tax holidays.


Ohio Sales Tax Holidays 2020

August 7-9, 2020 – Ohio Back to School Sales Tax Holiday

  • Articles of clothing priced at $75 or less, school supplies and school instructional materials priced at $20 or less are tax free during the holiday.

Oklahoma Sales Tax Holidays 2020

August 7-9, 2020 – Oklahoma Back to School Sales Tax Holiday

  • Articles of clothing “designed to be worn on or about the human body” with a sales price of less than $100 are tax exempt; Excludes accessories, rentals, athletic clothing and protective clothing.

Puerto Rico Sales Tax Holidays 2020

These temporary sales and use tax exemptions were passed due to the COVID-19 pandemic:

March 20-April 19, 2020Prepared foods (but not alcoholic beverages) will be temporarily exempt from sales tax.

March 23-April 30, 2020 -“Articles of necessity” will be temporarily exempt from sales tax. Items falling under the sales tax exemption include:

  • Hand sanitizers
  • Personal disinfection items (such as soap, shampoo, and wet towels or wet wipes)
  • Tissues
  • Masks
  • Isopropyl alcohol
  • Disinfectants and antiseptics
  • Articles for disinfection and / or household cleaning (such as soaps, detergents, chlorine and disinfectants)
  • Vinyl gloves
  • Pain relievers and medications with acetaminophen or ibuprofen (tablets, suppositories, liquid)
  • Anti-catarrh medications, including antihistamines

South Carolina Sales Tax Holidays 2020

August 7-9, 2020 – South Carolina Back to School Sales Tax Holiday

  • Clothing and clothing accessories and footwear are not taxable; Excludes rentals.
  • School supplies are not taxable.
  • Computers, printers, printer supplies, and computer software are not taxable (excluding commercial purposes).
  • Bath washcloths, bed linens, pillows, bath towels, shower curtains and bath rugs are not taxable.

Tennessee Sales Tax Holidays 2020

July 31-August 2, 2020 – Tennessee Back to School Sales Tax Holiday

  • Clothing with a sales price of less than $200 is not taxable; Excludes accessories.
  • School supplies and school art supplies with a sales price of $200 or less per item are not taxable.
  • Computers and televisions with a sales price of $3,500 or less per item are not taxable.

August 7-9, 2020 – Tennessee Restaurant Sales Tax Holiday

  • Restaurant food – During this 2020-only sales tax holiday the retail sale of food and drink by restaurants and limited service restaurants, as defined in Tenn. Code Ann. § 57-4-102, is exempt from sales tax

Texas Sales Tax Holidays 2020

April 25-27, 2020 – Texas Emergency Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday

  • Portable generators used to provide light or communications or to preserve perishable food in the event of a power outage, up to $3,000 per item are not taxable.
  • Storm protection devices specifically rated and marked to protect windows with a sales price of less than $300 are not taxable.
  • Emergency or rescue ladders with a sales price of $300 or less are not taxable.
  • Reusable or artificial ice, portable, self-powered light sources, gasoline or diesel fuel containers, batteries (excluding automobile or boat batteries), non-electric coolers or ice chests for food storage, tarpaulins or other flexible waterproof sheeting, a ground anchor system or tie-down kit, mobile telephone batteries or battery chargers, portable self-powered radios (including two-way radios or weatherband radios), non-electric can openers with a sales price of $75 or less are not taxable.
  • Fire extinguishers, smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors with a sales price of $75 or less are not taxable
  • Hatchets or axes with a sales price of $75 or less are not taxable.
  • Self-contained first aid kits with a sales price of $75 or less are not taxable.

May 23-25, 2020 – Texas Energy Efficiency Sales Tax Holiday

  • Energy Star air conditioners with a sales price up to $6,000 are not taxable.
  • Energy Star refrigerators with a sales price of up to $2,000 are not taxable.
  • Certain water-conserving products (for residential use) may be purchased tax-free.

August 6-9, 2020 – Texas Back to School Sales Tax Holiday

  • Clothing and footwear with a sales price of less than $100 per item are not taxable; Excludes accessories, rentals, and athletic or protective clothing.
  • School supplies and school backpacks with a sales price of less than $20 per item are not taxable.

Virginia Sales Tax Holidays 2020

August 7-9, 2020 – Virginia Combined Back to School Sales Tax Holiday, Energy Efficiency Sales Tax Holiday & Emergency Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday

  • Clothing and footwear with a sales price of $100 or less per item are not taxable.
  • School supplies with a sales price of $20 or less per item are not taxable.
  • Portable generators $1,000 or less per item are not taxable.
  • Gas powered chainsaws $350 or less per item are not taxable.
  • Chainsaw accessories $60 or less per item are not taxable.
  • Other specified hurricane preparedness supplies $60 or less per item are not taxable.
  • Energy Star and WaterSense ™ for noncommercial home or personal use $2,500 or less per item are not taxable.

States with No Sales Tax Holidays in 2020

The following states are not, as of this writing, participating in sales tax holidays this year. Keep in mind that sales tax holiday participation is subject to change and we’ll update this list if a state announces a sales tax holiday for 2020.

Arizona, California, Colorado, District of Columbia (Washington D.C), Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

What Should Online Sellers Do About Sales Tax Holidays?

In most cases, online sellers should try their best to honor sales tax holidays. Exceptions include when states allow retailers or certain localities to opt-out of sales tax holidays. In this case, it’s your decision whether or not you honor sales tax holidays. As a matter of sales strategy, it’s a good idea to participate. Customers will generally be on the lookout for tax-free deals over the holiday. But, as you’ll see, some online platforms make it difficult to stop collecting sales tax on certain items over certain time periods.

Amazon Sales Tax Collection and Sales Tax Holidays

Amazon honors sales tax holidays on school supplies and will automatically turn off sales tax collection on certain items during sales tax holidays. This is provided that you’ve correctly set your item’s product tax codes.

For example, products with the product tax code “A_SCHL_SUPPLS” won’t be taxed during sales tax holidays in states with a “Back to School Sales Tax Holiday.”

This is one of many reasons why it’s so important to ensure that your Product Tax Codes are set up correctly on Amazon. You can read a guide to Amazon Product Tax Codes here.

Sales Tax Holidays and Your eCommerce Store

Run your own shopping cart or marketplace? The TaxJar API honors sales tax holidays. Just set your product codes and we’ll make sure you’re not charging sales tax on non-taxable products during sales tax holidays in 2020. Find out more today!

While we strive to keep this list of 2020 sales tax holidays up to date, keep in mind that sometimes states approve sales tax holidays mid-year. If you notice a missing sales tax holiday, let us know in the comments!

In the meantime, subscribe to our blog here to receive the most up-to-date sales tax news, or visit www.taxjar.com to see how TaxJar can simplify managing sales tax and take the burden of sales tax off your plate. 

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