Summer is a season of holidays, isn’t it?

We kick things off on Memorial Day Weekend, we wrap things up on Labor Day Weekend, and we take at least a day off in the middle for Independence Day. And of course, our children get a whole 2.5 months for summer adventures, whether they’re exploring the great outdoors or diving into in a good book.

While the days off from work are certainly nice, there’s one more holiday worth mentioning—one that saves Alabama parents a lot of money.

Alabama’s 2018 Back-to-School Sales Tax Holiday weekend returns July 20-22, just a couple days from now.

And what a gift it will be for parents shopping for new clothes, supplies, and other essentials for their children’s upcoming school year. (They may even buy a few items for themselves.)

If we may impart a reminder, though: When you’re spending (nay, saving) all that money this weekend, now is the perfect time to start contributing to a CollegeCounts 529 account.

You may think that your kids aren’t old enough to start saving for college, but if they’re old enough for back-to-school shopping, they’re old enough for you to start saving for college expenses. The earlier you start saving, the more your children can benefit from their account.

Already have an account open for your kids? Now is the perfect time to increase your monthly or annual contributions, even if it’s just by a little bit. Remember, it can really add up.

What are the benefits of saving with a 529 account, you might ask? There are many, in fact, from tax benefits and investment options to where your funds can be used (accredited institutions in Alabama and nationwide) and what they can be used on (much more than just textbooks and tuition).

Every dollar you contribute now will make your child’s life just a little bit easier once college rolls around—and it’ll be sooner than you think. Besides, that new TV or grill can wait until Black Friday, right?