Laptops are expensive, and if you don’t correctly choose the best time to buy one you could end up significantly over paying.
But by correctly timing your laptop purchase we’ve shown you will, on average, save 42%.
We conducted an in-depth study with over 500 price points throughout the year for 20 different laptops to answer the question:
“When is the best time to buy a laptop?”
Here’s an example of the same laptop on Amazon costing over $100 more in November compared to May.
Just like the example above, the majority of laptops fluctuate in price throughout the year.
But before we dive into our own study covering the best time to buy a laptop, here is a summary of what most other articles suggest:
End of Summer
This is when back to school sales begin and retailers are trying to attract students into their stores.
This is when manufacturers start gearing up for the holiday season and annual sales such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday take place.
So which one is better, the end of summer or the beginning of winter?
When are laptop prices the highest or lowest?
We tracked prices for 20 laptops throughout the year across 4 major brands which included Apple, Dell, Acer, and HP using a tool called CamelCamelCamel.
Here are the average prices throughout the year for each brand.
Acer & HP
Each of these graphs revealed three distinct trends
1) Laptop prices decline over time
These graphs show that the price of laptops steadily trend down overtime with the exception of the holiday season.
Because newer models are always coming out with better, faster technology and outdating their predecessors, laptops get cheaper over time.
2) Holiday Season is the worst time to buy a laptop
Contrary to what other articles say, November is the worst time to buy a laptop.
This is because of higher demand during that the holidays and customers who are willing to pay a premium for “gifts”.
3) The end of summer is the best time to buy a laptop
Without a doubt, the end of summer is the best time to buy a laptop.
After the school season ends, manufacturers have unsold overstock they need to get rid of to free up shelf space for newer models.
Also, this closely coincides with Amazon Prime Day, which takes place on July 16th and has a large amount of laptop sales.
How Much Can You Save?
We compared the highest and lowest prices throughout the year for each of the 20 laptops to see how much you could save.
On average, buying a laptop at the right time of year saves 42%
As a result, saving 42% would save you $300 and $600 respectively!
How to Know if You’re Getting a Good Deal on a Laptop?
Whatever time you decide to buy a laptop, it’s important not to use MSRP or sale price when determining whether or not it’s a good deal.
MSRP prices have been proven to be inaccurate or even fraudulent in some cases.
Because MSRP prices are an unreliable metric, it’s better to use tools that are designed to show you how good of a deal you are getting.
Use a price-history-tool:
Some sites will track the price of an item throughout the year and show you if it’s a relatively good time to buy. One great tool is CamelCamelCamel.
Use a price-comparison tool:
Often times the exact same laptop will be significantly cheaper on one site compared to another.
Just take a look at these two identical products with a price difference over $100!
We recommend the free Chrome extension Compass to make sure you are always getting the best price.
It works on top laptop retail sites like BestBuy, Walmart, and Amazon.
When is the Best Time to Buy a Laptop?
The best time to buy a laptop is during the end of summer, in August or September.
So if you aren’t in dire need of an upgrade, hold of on purchasing.
Because laptop prices decline overtime, the longer you wait the more you’ll save.
How to guarantee you’ll get a good deal:
To ensure you get a good deal, make sure you do the following:
- Compare prices across all laptop retailers
- Check the price history to see if it’s at an all-time low or high
Use Compass, a free Chrome extension that is easy to install and will automatically compare prices for you while you shop.
It works on all the top laptop stores and will notify you if a laptop of your choosing drops in price.
Compass finds the best price for all types of products, not just laptops.
Other categories also have huge swings in pricing throughout the year, check out our other study on When is the best time to buy golf clubs?