Get ready for the tax free weekend

JONESBORO, AR- Starting Saturday morning at midnight, the second annual Arkansas Sales Tax Free weekend officially kicks off.

Shoppers were out Friday scoping out back- to-school items that included clothes and accessories.

Sarah McGavran with the Mall at Turtle Creek says all the stores are stocking up for a big weekend.

"Definitely the stores that their items are included in tax free." McGavran said, "They are gearing up more than say opposed to a jeweler store whose items are not included."

"We're kind of looking for tomorrow and putting stuff on lay-a-way." Chance Causey told me. He was shopping with his mom Belinda.

The Causeys were like many, looking for deals at the Mall. Last year nearly 70 thousand shoppers took advantage of not having to pay sales tax.

McGavran said, "When we have increased traffic even if that store isn't offering a special sale everyone benefits from having those increased views of having more people in the mall."

The tax-free items include clothing under a hundred dollars, school supplies and some accessories.

There were a couple of stores advertising sales on phones and computers. Laptops and electronics are not included in the Arkansas sales tax holiday. McGavran said that is a big disappointment for many shoppers. "Electronics are not included in the Arkansas sales tax holiday. We are hoping here at the mall that will be included in the years to come." She said.

Even saving a few tax dollars can help when it comes to outfitting a young person going back to school.

Belinda Causey looked up her son. "His school clothes are probably about 3 or 4  hundred dollars not counting his backpack or shoes."

Some stores such as "the Buckle" allow customers to lay-away with a small down payment to take advantage of the sales tax holiday.

McGavran, "You can come shopping ahead of time. Put your things back and then come check out on Saturday or Sunday."

Many stores are adjusting their hours for the weekend, opening early and staying open late.

The only possible down side to the tax holiday weekend is that the state, county and city don't benefit from the taxes on the merchandise. However, sales mean people come to town and have to eat and buy gas and other products.

"People are very much excited about back to school shopping when they get that little bit of percentage incentive to come out and go shopping all in one weekend." McGavran said. "It's going to be a busy weekend."

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