JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Are you ready to save some money? Thursday is the start of the first Freedom Week Tax holiday.
The holiday runs from July 1 through July 7 and you can buy the outdoor items and entertainment tickets you've been wanting this summer, all tax-free.
Tax-free items include outdoor equipment plus live sporting, music, and arts events and annual passes to museums and state parks.
"They don't have to travel far," said Lauren Little, owner of the online outdoor goods store Little Brown Squirrel. "Just go out into your own local city in your own community and hit a trail."
The whole idea is to help industries that need help after the pandemic and to get people outside to experience Florida. An entrepreneur, veteran, and mom, Little says the pandemic actually helped her business.
"Nationally they were saying, 'get out, go camping,'" she said. "And so camping sales went up. It's important for us to share with people that it's important to get out and take care of yourself first. As business owners, we understand that. So you don't have burnout, you can kind of run away in nature."
But industries like the arts were hit hard and that snowball effect is still felt. The American Hotel and Lodging Association predicted in January half of U.S. hotel rooms will stay empty this year.
Here's a list of what you can save on this week:
Tax-free items will include the following events scheduled from July 1 through Dec. 31, 2021 (tickets must be booked in the July 1 - July 7 holiday window):
- Live music events;
- Live sporting events;
- Movies at the movie theater;
- Entry to a museum, including any annual passes;
- Entry to a state park, including any annual passes;
- Entry to a ballet, play, or musical theatre performance;
- Season tickets for ballets, plays, music events, or musical theatre performances;
- Entry to a fair, festival, or cultural event; or
- Access or use of private and/or membership clubs providing physical fitness facilities.
The holiday also includes tax-free purchases on Florida-related recreational supplies including boating and water activity, camping, fishing, general outdoor supplies and sports equipment.
The criteria for tax-free savings on boating and water activities include:
- The first $75 on the price of life jackets and coolers;
- The first $50 on the price of safety flares;
- The first $150 on the price of water skis, wakeboards, kneeboards, and recreational inflatable water tubes;
- The first $300 on the price of paddleboards and surfboards;
- The first $500 on the price of canoes and kayaks;
- The first $75 on the price of paddles and oars; and
- The first $25 on the price of snorkels, goggles, and swimming masks.
Floridians may also enjoy tax-free purchases on the following camping supplies:
- The first $200 on the price of purchase of tents;
- The first $50 on the price of sleeping bags, portable hammocks, camping stoves, and collapsible camping chairs; and
- The first $30 on the price of camping lanterns and flashlights.
Florida shoppers more interested in fishing can find savings on:
- The first $75 on the price of individual rods and reels; or
- The first $150 on the price of a set of rods and reels;
- The first $30 on the price of tackle boxes or bags; and
- The first $5 on the price of individual bait or fishing tackle; or
- The first $10 on the price of multiple bait and tackle items sold together.
Other recreational savings include tax-free purchases such as:
- Up to the first $15 on the price of sunscreen or insect repellant;
- The first $100 on a pair of sunglasses;
- The first $200 on a pair of binoculars;
- The first $30 on the price of water bottles;
- The first $50 on the price of hydration packs;
- The first $250 of the sales price of outdoor gas or charcoal grills;
- The first $50 of the sales price of bicycle helmets; and
- The first $250 of the sales price of bicycles.
Floridians can also save on equipment used for individual or team sports purposes. This does not include clothing or footwear selling for $40 or less.