Virginia’s Annual Sales Tax Holiday is Almost Here

A parent shops for school supplies deals at a Target store, Wednesday, July 27, 2022, in North Miami, Fla. (AP Photo/Marta Lavandier)

By Meghin Moore

August 1, 2022

The annual three-day sales tax holiday is set to take place August 5 through August 7, where consumers can stock up on a myriad of items.

Amid rising inflation costs, the annual sales tax holiday is here to help Virginia’s consumers save money on a variety of items, including emergency supplies and back-to-school needs.

Items such as school supplies, clothing and footwear, hurricane and emergency supplies, as well as qualifying Energy Star™ and WaterSense™ products that are being used for personal use or noncommercial home use are exempt from the Virginia sales tax during the holiday. 

Under current Virginia law, the sales tax holiday exempts select items from the 4.3% state sales tax, the 1% local sales tax, and any other regional taxes that might apply. 

Unfortunately, computers are not included in the sales tax holiday, but for all intents and purposes, “school supplies” that are $20 or less are included. This covers most back-to-school items like backpacks, calculators, notebooks, writing supplies, art supplies like markers, crayons, colored pencils, and paints, lunch boxes, hand sanitizer, USB drives, and many other items used by students and teachers in classrooms across the commonwealth. 

The annual sales tax weekend is also a great way to get your children outfitted for the upcoming school year, as many items that are sold for $100 or less are also exempted from the sales tax. Any item that meets the definition of what “clothing” is and is $100 or less can be purchased without added sales tax. Sporting equipment like baseball gloves, mouth guards, shin guards and shoulder pads or specific athletic footwear like ballet shoes or cleats are not included in the list of exempted items. 

For people who like to be prepared for an emergency, there are many items that are exempted from the sales tax, provided that they’re $60 or less. This includes things like ice packs, batteries, portable self- or battery-operated light sources and radios, bungee cords, duct tape, plastic sheeting, smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, and first aid kits. 

Other hurricane preparedness items like portable generators are also exempted from the sales tax, provided they’re sold for $1000 or less. Chainsaws $350 and under, as well as any accessories needed that sell for $60 or less are also exempted from the sales tax during the holiday weekend. 

If you’re looking to renovate your home or update some household appliances, the sales tax holiday is also a great time to buy. Items like air conditioners, ceiling fans, dehumidifiers, washing machines, dishwashers, refrigerators, and lightbulbs are exempted from sales tax, if they’re an EnergyStar™-labeled item. Items such as faucets, showerheads, toilets, and any landscape irrigation controllers that have the WaterSense™ label are also exempted.   

Items purchased in stores and online are included in the sales tax holiday.

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