Depending on where they live, Californians pay 7.25% to 9.75% in sales taxes, and Amazon.com is poised to collect California sales tax in a few days, so shoppers are buying now:
“I’ve ordered nine things in the last two weeks,” said Cheng, 32, whose purchases include a hands-free roaming camera for $199.99, five pounds of protein powder for $53.99 and exercise resistance bands for $26.99. “Any time you can save money, that’s a good thing.”
He’s not the only one looking for a deal.
Abdel Ibrahim, a tech entrepreneur and trader from San Diego, said he would buy a MacBook Air and MacBook Pro with retina display on Amazon before the cutoff, a move that will save him about $270 in sales taxes.
“It makes a huge difference,” the 30-year-old said. “If there’s anything else I can think of where I can fork up some money and save a couple hundred bucks, I probably will.”
Amazon won’t say whether sales to California customers have spiked in recent weeks. But judging from comments on social media sites and reportedly increased buying activity in other states before similar sales tax laws went into effect, many shoppers see these final days as an excuse to shop freely.
The Seattle company, which for years avoided having a physical presence in California so it wouldn’t have to collect sales taxes, is now opening two enormous fulfillment centers in the state. The warehouses, in San Bernardino and Patterson, are expected to bring more than 1,000 new jobs to the state. Once they’re up and running, the proximity of the centers could speed up shipping times for shoppers — same-day shipping, however, isn’t in the plans yet.