Tax-free weekend is back in South Carolina for the 15th year, which softens the blow of the nightmare that is back-to-school shopping for many families.

It ends Sunday at midnight, so get to the malls early for the good parking spots and take advantage of these deals while you're at it.

View the full list of tax-free goods at

School supplies

Target has some good deals on their Up & Up store-brand supplies, plus they're donating one back-to-school item to the Kids in Need Foundation for every store-brand supply sold until Saturday. Multi-subject notebooks and three-ring binders for $3 is a highlight of the store's deals.

Staples is a pack leader for the back-to-school sales this year. The retailer is offering a 110 percent price-match guarantee on any school supplies items, which means it will match any other store's sale price, and then take an additional 10 percent off the price difference. Just be sure to bring other stores' ads. Staples best deals are packs of Bic Crystal ballpoint pens and mechanical pencils for $1. A pack of five mechanical pencils by Papermate is free with an easy rebate, which you can fill out online at

Kids apparel

Kohl's has 40 percent to 50 percent off most brands of kids' apparel, including My Michelle, Carter's and OshKosh B'gosh. Clothing for young adults is discounted by up to 60 percent, which means some pairs of shorts and tops are priced at less than $10.

If your kids' schools have dress codes or uniforms, try checking Old Navy for $5 solid color polo shirts and $10 khaki bottoms for teens and kids.

At Rack Room, all shoes are buy one, get one at 50 percent off. Plus, many kids shoes are on sale for $40 or less.


Without the sales tax, certain electronics are going to be the best deals this weekend. Laptops are tax free, and there are some good models on sale right now.

Best Buy has the top-rated MacBook Air for $900, about $100 less than the Apple store. It's not the best deal on any laptop, but Apple fans know these machines hardly ever go on sale. The retailer also has several good PC's for less than $500.

Printers are cheaper than ever right now. If you need one for basic printing for school papers and reports, Staples has a simplistic model by Brother on sale for $70, $50 less than usual.

Mall promotions

At Citadel Mall, customers who spend $150 or more in at least two stores until Aug. 8 will get a $20 mall gift certificate.

At Mount Pleasant Towne Centre, if you spend $250 across five businesses in the center (including the movie theater, restaurants and stores) through Sunday, you'll get a $25 rewards card.

If you spend $75 at the Tanger Outlet Center in North Charleston, take your receipts to the Shopper Services office and you'll receive a free gift.

Reach Abigail Darlington at 937-5906 and follow her on Twitter @A_Big_Gail