HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - The start of the new school year is right around the corner, and Pine Belt stores are starting to see an influx of last minute shoppers. Some back to school shoppers are holding out even longer, to take advantage of the tax free holiday which begins Friday at midnight.
Sale signs are up and shoppers are flying in to get the most bang for their buck. Stores like JCPenney, at the turtle creek mall, are gearing up for one of the busiest shopping weekends of the year.
Store Manager Roy Viator said, "we expect it to be as good as last year or better. With the economy like it is, people are looking for deals."
Viator said, the deals are already in place at JCPenney, even though the tax free holiday doesn't take effect until 12 a.m. Friday.
"Besides being tax free, we have our biggest back to school sale going on, plus we have another enticement to make it even better for them. We have a coupon add in the paper for $10 off of $25 or more."
Local shopper Satonya Bolton said, "I think it is great, it helps you save money. People that have more than one child in the family, it is a great opportunity for them to get everything that they need at one time."
This year, a number of Pine Belt schools will require kids to wear uniforms, so most of the back to school styles at JCPenney look a little different.
"It makes it a whole lot better! Sometimes times you have to order out of catalogues but to know that the stores actually have them, I think that is excellent," said Bolton.
Bolton said even though the school uniforms policy makes shopping easier, it certainly doesn't make it cheaper.
" 5 or 6 uniforms, pencil paper, I say around $300 or $400 just to get started and then you just add on later on in the year."
So, for Bolton and many others, back to school sales makes shopping more enjoyable.