If you want to save some coin on back-to-school supplies (or other purchases), the best time is Aug. 3 to Aug. 5, when South Carolina conducts its sales-tax holiday.
The savings amount to at least a 6 percent discount on all qualified purchases, which can include computers, clothes and more, even if you don't have kids or aren't enrolled in school.
WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW • See a detailed list
What definitely qualifies: Clothing, shoes, school supplies, book bags, computers, printers, bedspreads and linens and more.
What's off limits: Jewelry, cosmetics, eyewear, furniture, or items placed on layaway, and other items.
What about an iPad?: Short answer: It's tax-free. Portable devices primarily used for telephone calls, listening to or downloading music, watching videos, or reading books are not part of the holiday. Tablet PCs, however, are tax-free, just like computers, but the device cannot be used as a portable telephone.
Don't have kids?: Doesn't matter. All qualified items are tax-free for any purchase, except those used for businesses. Retailers cannot opt out of the holiday.
Does it apply to the Internet?: Yes. So long as the sale occurs during the three-day sales-tax holiday. See other restrictions.
BY THE NUMBERS:
13 years: How long South Carolina has held the holiday;
12:01 a.m.: The exact time on Aug. 3 when the tax holiday begins. It ends at midnight Aug. 5;
6 percent: The minimum amount you'll save, but local sales taxes are on holiday, too;
No. 3: The tax-free weekend is only outpaced in terms of money spent by weekends after Thanksgiving and before Christmas;
$3 million: The amount saved annually during the tax-free weekend.