5 Ways To Save Money On Apple Products

Apple products are among the best in the tech industry and with that quality comes an enduring popularity with consumers. In fact, the brand's iPhone occupies six spots on the list of top 10-selling mobile phones of all time (as of April 2023). Unfortunately, the desirability of Apple products is fully reflected in their lofty price tags and the fact that the company seldom offers sales. When Apple does have a sale, it's typically in the form of a gift card bonus that can be used toward future Apple purchases, not an actual discount.

Whether you yearn for the latest iPhone 15 Pro with titanium or the brand's laptop and desktop computers that now feature Apple's own in-house processors, buying that coveted device can put a serious crimp in your bank account. Unless you're willing to settle for a previous generation device, it may be near impossible to score the type of savings that's sometimes available with other brands, but Money Analysis does have a few suggestions on how to stretch your Apple dollar by 10% or more, even on the latest products.

Sales like Black Friday and Prime Day

Your local Apple Store or the brand's website often charges top dollar, but fortunately, those aren't the only places to buy Apple products. Retailers, like Best Buy, Amazon, Walmart, and even Costco, carry Apple electronics.

Look for sales, such as Black Friday or Cyber Monday in late November, to score some deals, particularly if you can live without the absolute latest and greatest model. Note that even non-Costco members can shop the warehouse store for Apple bargains; although you'll pay a small premium over what Costco members pay, it could still be worth pursuing.

Online retail giant Amazon, meanwhile, is also a great place to check for bargains on Apple gear, especially during the company's Prime Days, which are multiday sales events exclusively for Prime members. In recent years, Prime Day has expanded to a twice-per-year occurrence. In 2023, those dates to scour for bargains landed in July and October.

Apple's education pricing

Students and teachers who use Apple products for educational purposes are eligible for a discount on certain types of electronics, such as computers and iPad tablets. Per Apple's website, education pricing is available "to current and newly accepted college students and their parents, as well as faculty, staff, and homeschool teachers of all grade levels."

In the past, Apple has required proof that customers seeking the education discount were actually involved in education via a third-party verification service. More recently, the verification process for United States buyers has been lifted, although there's still a limit as to how many items per year an educational customer may purchase. It's also unclear whether the suspension of the verification requirement — which also varies by country — is permanent or temporary.

How much can students, teachers, or parents expect to save? The discounts vary but at the time of this writing, Money Analysis observed that the latest iMac with M3 chip was $50 less expensive, while a 13-inch Macbook Air M2 was $100 off the regular price. Besides discounts, Apple periodically offers bonus gift cards to educational customers. Applicable toward any future purchase, the free gift cards can be valued up to $150.

Apple's trade-in program

If your older Apple device is no longer needed or being replaced with a newer model, why not see how much it could be worth as a trade-in? Apple offers a trade-in program for your old iPhone, Macbook, Apple Watch, and other products. Not all products and vintages are eligible for trade-in but if you want to find out how much your old Apple electronics are worth toward your shiny new gadget, visit Apple's trade-in page.

The value of your trade is deducted directly from the purchase price of your new item or if you're not quite ready to make a new purchase, Apple will send you a gift card for the amount of your trade instead. When you're ready to hand over your old device, Apple will ship you a trade-in kit with a special box and prepaid return shipping label. Alternatively, you can take your item to a local Apple Store if there's one nearby to your location.

If it's a new iPhone that you crave, cell phone carriers like Verizon frequently offer their own trade-in deals. They'll accept your old phone even if its seriously outdated or damaged, but do read the fine print. Some offers require a long-term commitment to one of the carrier's more pricey service plans.

Apple's certified refurbished products

Buying refurbished is a classic move for smart consumers looking to save on the latest Apple products, like Macbooks, iPhones, and iPads. Better still, you're not relying on a questionable third party to inspect and recondition your device because Apple operates its own in-house Certified Refurbished Store. What exactly is the Certified Refurbished Store? According to Macworld, refurbished products sold by Apple are open-box items where the customer either had second thoughts about their purchase and returned it within Apple's 14-day return period, or the product may have had a fault.

Before selling the returned products, Apple makes sure they're functioning properly and cosmetically like new. The electronics are cleaned and any missing items like cables or documents are replaced. So how much money can you save? Typically around 15%, which equates to a $320 savings on a 12.9-inch iPad Pro or $530 off a 16-inch Macbook Pro with M2 Max silicone. All refurbished products come with the same one-year limited warranty as brand-new items and are also eligible for Apple Care coverage. If you don't see the product or model you want, do check back regularly because the selection of refurbished items is constantly changing.

Military, veterans, and small business discounts

Through its Veterans and Military Purchase Program, Apple honors current and ex-military with a 10% discount. According to the company website, "A 10% discount is available to current and Veteran members of the U.S. Military, National Guard and Reserve. Immediate family members who reside in the same household are also eligible." Note that in order to obtain the discount, your current or past military status will need to be verified using ID.me.

Small business owners may also qualify for discounts, special financing terms, and free hardware advice by opening a Business Account. For additional information, visit Apple's Small Business page or ask to speak to the appropriate person at your local Apple Store.

Even if you're not a small business owner, though, many larger companies have a relationship with Apple that entitles its employees to a discount, even if the gadget is for personal use. You'll want to inquire with human resources to verify any discounts and if so, present your ID, like a work badge, at your local Apple Store to get the savings. Alternatively, a special online ordering portal for company employees may also be available.