A friend of mine recently bought a fancy new MacBook Air. He struggled with paying the "Apple tax," but decided the razor-thin laptop was worth the $1799 price tag. Then, about a month later, he made a startling discovery: Apple was selling refurbished Airs for just $999. Had he poked around the company's online store instead of giving in to retail temptation, he could have been $800 richer.
I don't like it when shoppers pay more than they need to. And given the economy's parlous state, we all need to be careful with our tech dollars. So it's a good time for a refresher course in the tricks of the cheapskate trade.
This isn't chump change I'm talking about; over the course of a year, the 31 tips in this series (see the list below) could save you more than $7500. Granted, that figure is based on my ballpark estimates, and I'm a fairly heavy shopper (rarely does a week or two go by without my ordering something). Your results will likely be different--but should still amount to some serious money.
The 31 tips have been organized by category to help you find exactly the tips you need:
When you're strapped for cash for a can't-avoid-it purchase, sometimes it's worth sacrificing a few frills. We zeroed in on a desktop, a laptop, a color laser printer, a camera, and an HDTV. Each represents a great value in its category.
Nobody likes buying more printer ink. Follow these tips and you won't have to nearly so often.
Are your phone bills killing you every month? Here's how to cut them down to size.
Online services like WishRadar, RetailMeNot, and DealLocker can help you find bargains--and one site will even pay you for searching.
Entertainment doesn't have to be expensive, even with a large HDTV and great content.
Think you need an app like Nero or Quicken? Think again. These handy pieces of software can fill in for much more expensive alternatives.
Save money on batteries and find a new use for your old PC with these tips.
These ideas sound like they'd save you some dough, but they'll end up costing more than you'd expect.