Illinois sales tax holiday arrives for back-to-school shopping

If back-to-school shopping is on your to-do list, you’ll want to do yourself a favor: Mark August 5-14 on your calendar.

This is the period that has been designated as an Illinois sales tax holiday by the state’s Department of Revenue. This means you can purchase many items – not all, but the list of eligible items is long – at a reduced rate of state sales tax. During this period, the state’s share of sales tax is reduced from 6.25% to 1.25%. Items include qualifying clothing and footwear with a retail price of less than $125 per item and certain school supplies used by students in the course of their studies. School supplies are not subject to the $125 threshold.

Illinois would be one of 18 states that will grant tax exemptions in 2022.

According to the Department of Revenue, items eligible for the tax reduction include:


• house and shop aprons • athletic supports • bathing suits and caps • belts and suspenders • coats and jackets • gloves and mittens • hats, caps and earmuffs • lab coats • ties • rain gear • rain pants rubber (cloth diaper covers) • scarves • underwear • school uniforms • shorts and pants • skirts and dresses • stockings and tights • shirts and blouses


• shoes, sneakers and laces • sandals • slippers • socks and stockings • slippers • boots and shoe covers • insoles for shoes • steel-toed shoes


• binders • book bags • calculators • cellophane tape • blackboard chalk • composition notebooks • colored pencils • colored pencils • erasers • stretch pouches, plastic folders and manila • glue, paste and paste sticks • highlighters • index cards and index boxes • legal pads • lunch boxes • marker pens • notebooks and notebook paper, including loose-leaf notebook, copy paper, chart paper, tracing paper, manila, colored and construction paper, and cardboard for poster • pencils and pencil leads • pens, ink and ink refills for pens • pencil boxes and other school supply boxes • pencil sharpeners • protractors, rulers and compasses • scissors • writing tablets

The following items are NOT eligible:


Any item of clothing with a retail price of $125 or more, and • briefcases • cosmetics • hair notions, including but not limited to barrettes, hair bows and hair nets. hair • handbags and wallets • handkerchiefs • jewelry and watches • non-prescription sunglasses • umbrellas • wigs and hairpieces


• gloves, including but not limited to baseball, bowling, boxing, hockey and golf gloves • eye protection • hand and elbow guards • life jackets and vests • mouth guards • shin guards • shoulder pads • wetsuits


• respirators • cleanroom clothing and equipment • ear and hearing protectors • face shields • helmets and hard hats • dust or paint respirators • protective gloves • goggles and safety glasses • seat belts and tools • welding gloves and masks


• ballet, tap, cleated or spiked dance shoes • roller and ice skates • ski boots • waders and flippers


Art supplies • clay and glazes • acrylic, tempera and oil paints • brushes for artwork • sketchbooks and drawing books • watercolors


• reference books • reference maps and globes • textbooks and workbooks


• computers and related supplies • thumb drives and other computer data storage devices • data storage media such as floppy disks and compact discs • boxes and cases for disk storage • ports or external drives • computer cases • data cables computer • computer printers • printer cartridges, toner, and ink


• cameras and related supplies such as film and memory cards, video cameras, video cassettes and tapes • cell phones • personal digital assistants (PDAs) and portable electronic organizers

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