Order online or buy at Apple store?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by Earache, May 18, 2005.

  1. Earache macrumors newbie

    May 18, 2005
    Wondering if anyone has any experience on ordering vs. buying from a "brick and mortar" store. I'm looking to buy a new G5 iMac, and was planning on ordering from apple.com, but was surprised to find out that they were charging me tax! In your experience, are there any online retailers that offer rebates (amazon.com has $150 off of the iMac right now) or other incentives, including free shipping and no taxes? Any advice would be greatly appreciated- Help a potential switcher make the switch!
  2. amac4me macrumors 65816


    Apr 26, 2005
    Well, first of all, congrats on the decision to make the switch. You'll be happy that you did.

    I would recommend that you purchase from an online retailer if you can live with a pre-configured system. You'll save on the tax ... especially from Amazon. I think Amazon is the way to go because in addition to their rebates, you get free shipping.
  3. lazyboy922 macrumors 6502


    Dec 9, 2003
    Las Vegas, NV
    can you get the student discount though? I thought you had to buy directly from apple if you want that.
  4. joshua_msu macrumors regular


    Aug 5, 2004
    chicago (formerly detroit)
    Well, no student discount at Amazon, but depending on what state you live in, and what the rebate is, it is often cheaper to buy at Amazon than to buy at Apple with a student discount. I saved around 120 dollars by buying at Amazon on my PB.
  5. Jsmit macrumors regular

    Sep 10, 2004
    When I was in college at UMass, you could get edu discounts through the campus store... I thought other colleges also offered this.
  6. absolut_mac macrumors 6502a


    Oct 30, 2003
    Dallas, Texas
    There are very few states, if any, where Apple won't charge you sales tax.

    On the other hand, there are only one or two states where Amazon is obliged to charge you sales tax.

    Especially with no sales tax and a coupon, Amazon is the way to go, unless you need something BTO.

    I've always been very happy saving money from Amazon, but just don't rely on them for speedy shipping - as they say *there ain't no free lunch*.
  7. Duff-Man macrumors 68030


    Dec 26, 2002
    Albuquerque, NM
    Duff-Man says....you'll love the new iMac G5....great computer and very competitively priced when you factor in everything.

    As for the tax - Apple is not charging it because they want to, or because it puts more $$ in their accounts (it doesn't)...it is because they are required to by law....oh yeah!
  8. wiseguy27 macrumors 6502


    Apr 30, 2005
    lotsa online stores

    Check this - http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?p=1447067#post1447067

    That thread has a list of online retailers - most of them charge sales tax in only a few states and most of them provide some bundled "extras". As noted in other posts in this thread, only the stock models would be available in these stores (except a couple of them that allow you to customize it). Unless you check each and every online store, you may not find the best offer. If you're not in a hurry, also check www.dealmac.com everyday to see if some specials come up (with Memorial Day in the US just about a week away, there would be some additional incentives from many authorized resellers).
  9. JeffTL macrumors 6502a

    Dec 18, 2003
    Buy straight from Apple, support your state. You DO like roads, public education, and law enforcement, don't you?

    I do use Amazon and whatnot, but not specifically to duck taxes -- and I wouldn't curtail my use any if they did assess sales tax in Nebraska.
  10. paleck macrumors 6502a


    Apr 11, 2005
    with the Tequila!
    As I understand the sales tax issue. Companies are required to charge tax in any state (that has a sales tax) that they have an office/store operating in. For instance I live in UT where we don't currently have an apple store/office that I know of, but there is a store planned and advertised job openings on apples website for the new store. So they charged me tax on my order from a week ago.

    Some online stores will charge sales tax for every state that has a tax no matter what. They do this to shield themselves from states from retroactively forcing them to charge sales tax to their customers and paying taxes for which they never collected.

    I don't know if that helps or makes sense, but I tried. :rolleyes:
  11. MacRumorSkeptic macrumors regular

    Jul 9, 2002
    Southern California
    HA! I don't know what its like in Nebraska but in California our taxes go to bloated socialist programs that provide welfare, education, and health care to ILLEGALS. So to HELL with supporting my state and any other government that willingly robs its citizens of their hard earned money to give to someone else!
  12. Jschultz macrumors 6502a


    Mar 14, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    Haha, I just may second that. Hardly any illegals in NE I think. The low capacity of mind they have even tells them that NE is NOT the place to be. :p :D
  13. Chip NoVaMac macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Dec 25, 2003
    Northern Virginia
    Bravo to JeffTL for a well put statement.

    The all others. A company is required to collect sales taxes if they have legal nexus in that state. It does not have to be buildings or such. It can be as simple as regular visits from company personnel.

    Also some states (like Virginia) require you to pay a use tax for purchases in which you paid no sales tax on.

    We can argue till the cows come home, of where our tax dollars should be spent. There will always be projects that we all don't agree on. I have said it before, and I'll say it again - if you don't like how your government is being run, then vote in those that will.

    Back to the original post. Building a relationship with a brick and mortar store and its people can help long term for support.
  14. panda macrumors regular

    Mar 15, 2004

    +++ i suggest this forum be kept free from bigotry. particularly ignorant and malicious remarks such as these :mad:

  15. allisonv7 macrumors 6502

    Jul 20, 2004
    I bought my 17" iMac from the store back in January, I was able to get upgraded RAM and bluetooth w/ wireless mouse & keyboard without ordering, they were already configured that way.

  16. redynvre macrumors newbie

    Apr 30, 2004
    I will not elaborate in this thread since it is out of subject, but I would strongly suggest you learn the facts before post such nonsense! If it wasn't for the so called Illegals, the California economy, especially the farming industry would be in the toillet! Oh and by the way, they DO pay taxes AND Social Security AND Medicare taxes BUT do hardly benefit from it.
  17. capone2 macrumors regular

    Mar 29, 2005
    apple.com a must.

    The online store does something great call them to order dont do it on the web have the web pages in front of you, if you find a deal on the web that's better than apples tell them while your on the phone what site had the deal and they will match and or take 10percent off the price.

    The online apple store is the best, they are so great to deal with and they will work with you on whatever config want and price.

    The retail stores dont and cant do any of that.
  18. Peterkro macrumors 68020


    Aug 17, 2004
    Communard de Londres
    I agree with Panda on this,the place to exhibit your ignorance is Politics and Religion not here(socialism in california sssh!)
  19. DonP macrumors newbie

    May 19, 2005
    Amazon charges shipping

    I'm also about ready to buy an iMac G5 20". Amazon doesn't offer free shipping on computers, at least not the Imac at 36lbs. The shipping to socal would run $31, but no sales tax. I added one to my cart and found the estimated ship date was July 5th, longer than I wanted to wait. So I called the local Apple store and they should have one for me next week. I considered ordering from Apple.com, but I'm not home during the day to sign for it. Can't wait!
  20. Cooknn macrumors 68020


    Aug 23, 2003
    Fort Myers, FL
    I recommend "brick and mortar". CompUSA is a good choice. You can take your iMac home the same day, and if something is wrong ie. stuck or dead pixels on the display, you can take it back and get another one within 21 days (that's CompUSA's no questions asked return policy).
  21. Chip NoVaMac macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Dec 25, 2003
    Northern Virginia
    Not wanting this thread to go wasteland or worse; i will say that at least in the Herndon Virginia area, there is a thriving market for day laborers.
  22. jeffgtr macrumors regular

    May 9, 2005
    I'd buy from a brick and mortar store. I ordered a powermac dual 1.8 a few days ago and it's still in "processing", the same day I ordred the mac I ordered a monitor from Dell and memory from Crucial, both the memory and monitor arrived today. When I call Apple all they say is that it "might" ship today or tommorow but that was just an estimate, they couldn't tell me if the computer was in stock or really when to expect it. I've had poor customer service from Dell but I must say it hasn't been much better with Apple and I really really hate to say that because I am not a Dell fan by any stretch of the imagination.
  23. absolut_mac macrumors 6502a


    Oct 30, 2003
    Dallas, Texas
    I beg to differ.

    Amazon often offer free shipping, usually by UPS ground, on clearnace items and when sales are slow. Such freebies are usually hard to come by when sales are hot.
  24. wdlove macrumors P6


    Oct 20, 2002
    I also like to purchase ay a brick and mortar. It always helps when you have a relationship with the staff. Also in many states when taxes are filed you are suppose to declare purchases that taxes weren't charged.
  25. savar macrumors 68000


    Jun 6, 2003
    District of Columbia
    I gotta disagree right there. CompUSA is hell on earth and I will certainly never buy anything there again unless its steeply discounted.

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