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Tips to take advantage of Florida's tax-free shopping holiday weekend

Posted: 5:21 AM, Aug 03, 2018
Updated: 2018-08-03 10:38:11Z

Get your wallets ready -- this weekend is a double whammy for retailers in Florida. 

Back to school shopping and tax free holiday will all be rolled into one.

The tax free holiday started at 12:01 a.m. Aug. 3 and runs through Aug. 5.

This weekend is the state’s second busiest shopping holiday -- behind Black Friday -- according to the Florida Retail Federation.

Royal Palm Beach resident Sue August is one of those parents who has decided to stay ahead of the crowds. She's trying to get her back-to-school shopping done early at the Target in Royal Palm Beach .

"This is the list that I just created," she said, holding up her son's seventh grade back-to-school shopping list. "I made a spreadsheet of their school supplies. I like spreadsheets!"

And that list just for one of her boys.

“I am a planner and so I like to get things done ahead of time," she said.

Before you go shopping this weekend, here's a few tips to remember:

You need to know what you’re saving on and have your list ready to go. Many stores like Target and Walmart have school supply lists printed out and ready to grab for schools in that particular area.

You will not pay taxes on clothes, shoes, accessories like backpacks or pencil bags -- as long as it's priced below $60. School supplies are tax free up to $15.

"I think it is worth it especially for the higher priced items like sneakers, I think that's the way to go," said August.

Remember, just because items are tax exempt does not mean that's the lowest price you'll find. Be sure to check other stores and compare prices online.

“I've gone to Hobby Lobby, Walmart, Five Or Below, Target -- twice," said Nancy Norton, a pre-K special needs teacher, who is shopping for decorations and accessories at various stores to find exactly what she needs.

Also, you can still use coupons and rewards programs this weekend. Check the circulars -- which are located at the front of the stores -- for listed discounts and special offers like free gift cards with certain purchases.

Don’t forget to price match! Many stores like Walmart, Target, Office Max, Best Buy, Office Depot and Michaels will price match each other, including online prices on Amazon. Some restrictions do apply and you may need to provide proof through the website, circular or advertisement.

Finally, get an early start if at all possible.

"Have lots of patience. No pushing and shoving. And please remember your teachers, they like donations as well," said Norton.