Electronics are always hot gift items for the holidays and Dan Ackerman, senior editor at CNET, offered some advice to get the best deals on gadgets this season.
Avoid "doorbuster" deals.
Don't always fall for the lowest price being advertised. "Especially if it seems too good to be true," said Ackerman. Giving examples like laptops or tablets, he said often times those items are older and possibly underpowered. Stores are usually trying to get rid of those "big deal" items, so Ackerman suggests to "Dive a little bit deeper and look for the sales that are not the 'biggest lowest' number, but still represent a good value." And look for things that are more in line with what you need in terms of power and performance.
Make sure you have apps on your phone.
This holiday season you want to have apps that will help you comparison shop. One great way to compare prices is using a QR reader and barcode scanner app. When you scan an item the app will show you competitive prices at other stores, and can even show how prices are trending -- whether it's becoming more or less expensive. Ackerman says there are many of these apps out there, but he personally likes "Scan."
He also recommends downloading apps for individual stores you are planning to go visit. A lot of times stores might have special deals, and possibly extra coupons.
And if you are on short deadline, Amazon Prime Now (available in select metropolitan areas) could be a good app for you. "It's going to save you time and effort. It's going to save you travel expenses. Prices are generally the same as you would find on regular Amazon. The real key here is you can just stay in your home or in your office and they'll bring it right to you," said Ackerman.
Don't buy extended, in-store warranties for "big ticket" items.
Ackerman advises not to bother with extended, in-store warranties for items like laptops and TVs. He said these types of programs make big profits for the stores and if something is going to go wrong with these items, "There is a good chance it is going to happen very quickly, usually within the store's return policy." Plus, Ackerman said your purchase is often covered by a manufacturer's warranty; also, your credit card may offer additional purchase protection.