CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – South Carolina’s annual tax-free weekend is now underway. This 72-hour period starts Friday and will end on Sunday at 11:59 p.m.

News 2 visited the Mount Pleasant Towne Centre and spoke to Marketing Director Kathi Herrmann about the busiest times for shoppers during the annual weekend.

Herrmann says 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. is typically a busy time at the Towne Center, especially during this time of year with back-to-school shopping — and they’re expecting larger crowds during the tax-free holiday.

The tax-free shopping weekend is particularly focused on back-to-school shoppers.

According to the South Carolina Department of Revenue, shoppers can save on a long list of tax-free items ranging from clothing, accessories, and shoes to school supplies, backpacks, computers, printers, and even some bed and bath items.

LIST: Items included in SC’s tax-free weekend

Officials say these eligible items can be purchased online and in-store without paying the state’s 6% sales tax. If you’re shopping in person experts recommend using tap-to-pay to avoid card skimmers. And if you’re shopping online, consumer advocates say to be cautious of fake websites and third-party sellers.

News 2 spoke with a retailing professor at the University of South Carolina, Mike Watson, who said shoppers can save best this weekend if they prepare.

“The key right is to understand if it’s back to school, is to understand, well what do my children specifically need for this upcoming school year, and what is on sale and stick to the plan. Have a list and be very specific, because it can be a benefit; if I’m buying school uniforms for 3 children that can be a lot of savings,” said Professor Watson.

Locals expect a busy weekend as SCDOR reported last year that South Carolina shoppers bought more than $26. 2 million in tax-free items during the weekend