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Department of Taxation and Finance

Back-to-School Savings: Enjoy a New York State Sales Tax Holiday Every Day on Clothing and Footwear Sold for Less than $110 College students can also purchase their course textbooks exempt from New York State and local sales and use taxes throughout the year

For Release: Immediate,

For press inquiries only, contact: James Gazzale, 518-457-7377

Back to school photo

Take advantage of back-to-school savings now and throughout the year in New York State. The Tax Department is reminding students and parents of the tax breaks on purchases of certain clothing and footwear, and on course textbooks for full-time or part-time college students.

“Every day is a sales tax holiday in New York State on course textbooks for college students, and on clothing and footwear items sold for less than $110,” said Acting Commissioner Nonie Manion. “These savings on sales tax are available throughout the year.”

Sales tax exemption on clothing and footwear

Many states offer "sales tax holidays" leading up to the school year, but in New York State, qualifying clothing and footwear purchases are always exempt from the state’s 4% sales tax when they are sold for less than $110.

They’re also exempt from local sales tax year-round in New York City and the eight counties listed below. If a locality doesn’t provide the exemption, tax will be charged at the local rate only.

In 2018, the state exemption alone is expected to save New York shoppers more than $850 million. Savings from the combined state and local sales tax exemptions are about $1.3 billion annually.

New York City and the following counties don’t charge sales tax on clothing and footwear purchases under $110:

  • Chautauqua
  • Chenango
  • Columbia
  • Delaware
  • Greene
  • Hamilton
  • Tioga
  • Wayne

College textbooks

Course textbooks purchased by full-time or part-time college students are also exempt from New York State and local sales and use taxes throughout the year.

Students can make qualifying purchases from any bookstore (including college or university bookstores) in person, online, or by mail order. If sales tax is erroneously charged, they may file Form AU-11 to receive a sales tax refund on the purchase.

For more information