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Home > Reviews > Holiday Shopping Season

Holiday Computer Shopping Guide



Some of the best computer and tech deals of the year are advertised during the Thanksgiving and Christmas season. Sales start the day of Thanksgiving, carry on to the famous black-Friday, which is the day after, then to cyber-Monday, the Monday after Thanksgiving. This has generally come to be known as the best day to shop for electronics including computers online. Sales then carry on to the Christmas season and end of year sales. Advertisements are sent out in the mail weeks before sale events so be sure to check your mail, and are also published online on retail or department websites. In addition, an online search/price comparison on the type of computer you wish to buy can lead you to great deals. There are great online coupons which can yield savings of as much as 20%. These are found on numerous sites by simply typing in your preferred search engine the words ‘store name’ and ‘coupon’ but be sure to follow these tips: website should be easy to use, clear, contain a variety of offers, not require personal information and have customer service information.

Some popular websites include: , , ,  and .

Go Early and Bundle Up

You can get fantastic deals by buying more than one item together. Many stores advertise special offers and prices for buying your computer with its peripherals which can include a case for your laptop, a printer for your desktop or flat screen monitor and so on.

Make a Plan - Be Precise

Be sure to determine your specific needs before you start shopping. A basic use computer will, for example, have a 2.0 GHz Dual Core processor, 1 GB memory, 160 or more GB hard drive and 19” screen can cost anywhere from $200 to $300. To download music, movies, and work on more intense tasks, a computer with a faster processor consider, for example, a 2 GB RAM, 250 GB or more hard drive and a 19” screen that would be about $300 or more. For a computer which you will require for computer graphics, website designs and gaming, the best is a computer with a multi-core processor, 4 or more GB RAM, 350 GB hard drive or more and a larger screen like 21” which may cost about $500 plus.

Other considerations - RAM, RPM, processor, hard drive, built-in Bluetooth or wireless, speakers, inbuilt camera, battery life and so on.

Big or small?
Laptops are generally more expensive than desktops. If you don’t need to carry your computer around, then you can save big on a desktop with great features for less. This option also allows you to mix and match, unless there is a good bundle deal available.

In-Store or Online?

While shopping for a computer all the numbers and acronyms can seem confusing, especially with all the new upgrades of technology on a regular basis. If there is something you don’t understand while at a store, it is helpful to be able to ask an attendant. Another advantage of in store shopping is you get to feel out your computer before you buy it. This can be important if you are sensitive to things like the feel of your keyboard, the glare of your screen, and so on. Some brick-and-mortar stores will also advertise in store specials, early bird specials or store redeemable coupons.

By shopping online though, you can choose to save yourself the agony of long lines, harried attendants, parking nightmares and cut-throat snatching matches. Electronic retailers will oftentimes lure potential buyers with convenience, free shipping deals, a free item with purchase, and potentially lower prices. If you know what you want to buy, this is a great option.  Check out our related article: Shopping Comparison Websites Guide.

Holiday time is also high time for spammers and scammers. Beware of unsolicited emails, nefarious search engine results, unknown online retailers, emails with unsolicited links and unsecured Wi-Fi spots. Check out our tips on how to avoid online scams .  Still haven't secured your home wireless internet?  Check out our easy to follow instructions on how to secure your wi-fi .


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