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'Saving money is a blessing' | TN & MS shoppers excited about sales tax holiday weekend for back to school amid rising prices

With inflation at its highest levels in four decades, shoppers are excited to save where they can on new clothing, shoes and school supplies.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — ABC24 is saving you money by reminding you of back to school sales tax relief this weekend.

In Tennessee, the sales tax holiday runs Friday, July 29 through Sunday, July 31, 2022. Eligible items include clothing, shoes, school and art supplies that cost $100 or less per item. Computers, laptops or tablets $1500 or less are also eligible.

Additional details: tn.gov/revenue/taxes/sales-and-use-tax/sales-tax-holiday/sth-traditional.html.

In Mississippi, the sales tax holiday runs Friday, July 29 and Saturday, July 30, 2022. Eligible items include clothing, shoes, school and art supplies that cost $100 or less per item.

Additional details: dor.ms.gov/sites/default/files/Sales%20Folder/2022%20Sales%20Tax%20Holiday.pdf

With inflation at its highest levels in four decades, the temporary tax savings couldn't come at a more important time for shoppers, including Memphis mother Tyuana Stripling.

"Definitely had to cut down on spending," Stripling said, with surging prices year to year not seen since the early 1980's. "Inflation has caused, you know, more saving. You have to save, you know. You have to plan ahead."

But starting Friday, Stripling can save on her rising first grader's back to school needs.

"Those few taxes they take off, it adds up a lot," Stripling added.

RELATED: What to know about 2022 tax-free weekends in Arkansas, Mississippi, and Tennessee

At Memphis children's clothing, shoes, and school supply store Cotton Tails - where items are sales tax exempt - manager Julie Boshwit said she began planning in February and expects the weekend to be among the busiest all year.

"This is a good opportunity; our tax is very high in Shelby County," Boshwit said. "Do we need extra sizes for certain things to make sure everyone has a first day of school outfit? Do we have extra lunchboxes and backpacks knowing this weekend was coming?"

Mid-South economists believe a strong shopper appetite to save this summer will play out with strong demand in stores this weekend.

"I would predict that this is going to be a record year, people are more sensitive now than ever to price increases. A price decrease ought to be a good thing and they should recognize that," Dr. John Gnuschke said.

The sales tax is 7% in Mississippi and nearly 10% in Shelby County.

RELATED: Back-to-school shoppers expected to spend $168 more on average, compared to 2019

RELATED: Memphis church hosting back to school 'Community Day'

RELATED: Shelby County teachers can apply for a $500 grant for school supplies. Here's how

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