back-to-school[3]Shoppers packed stores in many states yesterday, taking advantage of the 2012 back-to-school sales tax holidays.

On Saturday morning, the line of cars headed into the entrance of the St. Augustine Outlet Mall in St. Augustine, FL, was close to 4 miles long. But shoppers appeared to be taking the long lines in stride. “Dealing with the crowds is worth it,” said one shopping mother who had three children in tow. “We are saving 6% on all our back-to-school stuff up front, and many stores are having sales on top of that.”

The tax free back-to-school holiday is an annual tradition in many states. In most cases, they began on on Friday and continue through today. According to Taxadmin.org, the following states are holding tax-free sales today: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Missouri, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia.

Participating states exempt different items from sales tax during the tax free holiday. The exemption usually applies to clothing and school supplies under a certain dollar amount.

States whose tax free holiday on school supplies have already come and gone are Iowa, and Louisiana.

States with upcoming back-to-school tax free holidays include Connecticut (August 19 – 25), Georgia (August 10 – 11), Maryland (August 12 – 18), and Texas (August 17 – 19).