Taxable Sales – Recreation and Admissions

Taxable sales include:

  • Fees paid to gain admission to a place or event.
  • Fees paid to use, or to have the privilege of using, tangible personal property or facilities for recreation. Tangible personal property is property that you can feel or touch and that isn’t “real property” (e.g., real estate).

Fees paid to participate in recreational activities

Fees paid to participate in recreation activities are generally taxable.

Admission charges

Admissions charges are generally taxable.

Charging a whole-dollar amount

You must separately state the tax on the receipt, invoice or ticket you give to your customer, even if you want to charge a whole-dollar amount for the price of admission, plus tax.

“Suggested” donations

  • If you suggest a price for an admission, even if you call it a donation, you must collect sales tax.
  • If you don’t set or suggest a price (or donation) and admission is allowed, don’t collect sales tax.

Admissions that nonprofit groups charge

You don’t need to collect sales tax on sale of admissions if you’re an organization conducting an exempt function as defined in section 527 or nonprofit organization registered as a 501(c)(3) with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and all of these are true:

  • The event is not predominantly recreational or commercial.
  • Any included entertainment value is minimal when compared to the price for attendance.
  • Your nonprofit organization paid sales or use tax on taxable property or services used during the event.

See Nonprofit and Religious Groups for additional information.

Fees for instruction

Instruction fees for swimming, jazzercise, dance, yoga, karate or tennis lessons aren’t taxable if you separately state the instruction fees from the facility fee.

The whole fee is taxable if you don’t separately state the instruction fees from the facility fee on a sales receipt.