Pennsylvania Sales Tax on Services, Installation, etc Pennsylvania: Sales Tax Handbook


What purchases are taxable in Pennsylvania?

The taxability of various transactions (like services and shipping) can vary from state to state, as do policies on subjects such as whether excise taxes or installation fees included in the purchase price are also subject sales tax. This reference is here to help answer your questions about what is and is not subject to the Pennsylvania sales tax.

Section 1: Taxability of Goods and Services

What transactions are generally subject to sales tax in Pennsylvania?

In the state of Pennsylvania, sales tax is legally required to be collected from all tangible, physical products being sold to a consumer. Some examples of items that exempt from Pennsylvania sales tax are food(not ready to eat food), most types of clothing, textbooks, gum, candy, heating fuels intended for residential property, or pharmaceutical drugs.

This means that an individual in the state of Pennsylvania who sells makup would be required to charge sales tax, but an individual who sells college textbooks would not.

Are services subject to sales tax in Pennsylvania?

Services in Pennsylvania are generally not taxable, a beautician or a stenographer in this state does not have to worry about sales tax except if services one offers include selling, repairing or building.

You can find a table describing the taxability of common types of services later on this page.


Are shipping & handling subject to sales tax in Pennsylvania?

Suppose an item being shipped is taxable, the shipping and handling charges are also subject to tax, but of the item being shipped is not subject to sales then their shall be no shipping or handling charges.In case the items are both taxable and non-taxable then the shipping and handling charges for the entire shipment are subject to tax.


Are drop shipments subject to sales tax in Pennsylvania?

"Drop shipping" refers to the common business practice in which a vendor, often in a different state, makes a sale of a product which is shipped to the end-user by a third party supplier hired by the initial vendor. In Pennsylvania, drop shipments are generally subject to state sales taxes.


Section 2: Taxability of Various Items in Pennsylvania

This table shows the taxability of various goods and services in Pennsylvania. If you are interested in the sales tax on vehicle sales, see the car sales tax page instead. Scroll to view the full table, and click any category for more details.

Category Exemption Status
Amazon Purchases
Products on TAXABLE *
General Clothing EXEMPT *
Food and Meals
Catering TAXABLE *
Grocery Food EXEMPT *
Leases and Rentals
Motor Vehicles TAXABLE *
Tangible Media Property TAXABLE
Manufacturing and Machinery
Machinery EXEMPT
Raw Materials EXEMPT *
Utilities & Fuel EXEMPT *
Medical Goods and Services
Medical Devices EXEMPT
Medical Services EXEMPT
Medicines EXEMPT
Newspapers and Magazines
Newspapers EXEMPT *
Periodicals TAXABLE *
Occasional Sales
General Occasional Sales EXEMPT *
Motor Vehicles TAXABLE *
Optional Maintenance Contracts
General Optional Maintenance Contracts TAXABLE
Parts Purchased for Use in Performing Service Under Optional Maintenance Contracts EXEMPT
Pollution Control Equipment
General Pollution Control Equipment TAXABLE *
Janitorial Services TAXABLE
Transportation Services EXEMPT
Software and Digital Products
Canned Software - Delivered on Tangible Media TAXABLE
Canned Software - Downloaded TAXABLE
Custom Software - Delivered on Tangible Media EXEMPT
Custom Software - Downloaded EXEMPT
Customization of Canned Software TAXABLE *
Digital Products EXEMPT
General Trade-Ins EXEMPT
Vending Machine Sales
Merchandise TAXABLE

* See notes in category taxability page for details

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