Should I buy a rmbp in US or UK?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Horsham Hector, Nov 3, 2013.

  1. Horsham Hector macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2013
    Location:
    UK
    #1
    Whilst I live in the UK I am visiting the US on holiday in December. I aim to purchase a new 15" rmbp and can see a big difference in the price between the UK & US. Should I buy when I visit? I'd also like a new Ipad Air. Will I be limited on what I can buy in the Apple shop in Washington DC? Will Applecare if purchased in the US cover me in the UK? Any advice will be appreciated.


    Imac 2013 27" i7 & Ipad 3.
     
  2. sarakn macrumors 6502a

    sarakn

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2013
    #2

    I live in US, and have family in UK as well as other European countries and Africa. If you have a chance to purchase in US, go for it - you save a few hundred bucks.

    The only question is AppleCare - I think in the UK, you get longer protection, not quite sure. Either way, I think AppleCare purchased here is still transferable. Just call Apple and say you're purchasing a gift for a friend in the UK and want to know if the AppleCare purchased here can be used over there. On second thought, you have a year to purchase AppleCare - why not just purchase MB and then wait to purchase AppleCare when you return?

    You're not limited on what you buy here or how many items you purchase. The only issue could be if you want a BTO unit - then you need to give them time to build and ship the unit. Maybe you can order before you get here and have them ship to the store.
     
  3. mannyo1221 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2011
    Location:
    Blandford, UK.
    #3
    Don't forget that the US keyboard layout is different to the UK. You can adapt to it of course, although not sure how you would get a £ or € symbol.
     
  4. Hadron macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2010
    #4
    Can't answer most of this, but AppleCare bought here in the UK includes international repair cover, so I expect the same is true for AppleCare bought there. Always good to check.

    Prices will be a bit higher than you expect, because US prices are quoted without sales tax, so if you go into a shop the actual purchase price is more than it says on the tag (though US Sales taxes, which vary between states, are in my experience less than UK VAT. I'd advise checking what they are in the state you will be visiting).

    You'll obviously only have the standard systems available in store (no build to order options). You'll also of course have a US keyboard layout (though to be fair an "Apple UK" layout isn't a standard UK keyboard anyway).
     
  5. jondunford macrumors 6502

    jondunford

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2013
    Location:
    Going for a poo Moderator
    #5
    my 2.6, 16, 512 macbook was £2399 ($3838)

    in the US it would have come to $2799


    for $1000 i think i would put up with not having a £ sign on my keyboard rofl.
     
  6. sabbyp macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2013
    #6
    you just choose the uk keyboard and use the 4/$ key

    I saved an enormous amount on my rmbp buying it over here (managed to snag a friend's student discount too!)

    ----------

    Applecare is international. Source:

    http://www.apple.com/support/products/faqs.html

    "The AppleCare Protection Plan for Mac, for iPod, for Apple TV, and for Apple Display provide global repair coverage. Service will be limited to the options available in the country where service is requested. Service options, parts availability, and response time vary by country."


    Many stores have the BTO machines stocked, but not available to view online or initially - you have to ask. Many threads about this already.
     
  7. Hadron macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2010
    #7
    I just did the comparison for the 2.6 GHz 13" standard system:

    * UK Apple Store: £1,499 including tax
    * US Apple Store: $1,799 excluding tax

    Today's exchange rate is ~1.6, so £1,499 - 20% VAT => $1,999. So there's a $200 "rip off Britain" factor built into the pricing :). Since Apple don't vary consumer prices month by month as exchange rates vary they've probably built some hedge against fluctuations into their pricing, which may account for part of this difference.

    Sales taxes are hugely variable in the US, but if you were going to CA for example the sales tax would be a minimum 7.5%, could be 9%, which puts the actual price of that system at $1,930-$1,960. So at today's exchange rate that's a saving of ~£280. I've not compared AppleCare costs, so that might be an extra saving. Of course if the pound rises or falls against the dollar in the meanwhile this could get better or worse!

    Best bet: do your homework on what is covered, work out the actual pricing as best you can, then decide whether the amount saves vs the time spent waiting for the system makes sense to you :)

    ----------

    Thanks - useful to know :)
     
  8. sarakn, Nov 3, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2013

    sarakn macrumors 6502a

    sarakn

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2013
    #8
    To those factoring in taxes, doesn't the OP get a refund for taxes paid when he returns home as he's not a US resident?

    Also, couldn't he take the MBP to the UK Apple store and have them swap out the keyboard for the UK version?

    I think he's better off purchasing in the US - you save hundreds and will still be covered.
     
  9. Tears Apart macrumors 6502a

    Tears Apart

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    Jun 10, 2009
    Location:
    Outside Closer
    #9
    Nobody will argue with that.
     
  10. chandler99 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2009
    Location:
    York, UK
    #10
    Good question for both buying in the US or Uk and if you can swap a US keyboard for a UK one.

    Would be interesting to know what you end up doing
     
  11. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #11
    Add to the savings....get whoever you are visiting to purchase it for you from B&H or MacMall (or anyone out of state) and avoid all sales tax. That should save at least $100 more. The same goes for Applecare. Get it from B&H in NYNY,
     
  12. Shushuwheels macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2013
    #12
    If you get the student discount in the Uk you save 14% plus you get free AppleCare. Can work out cheaper than standard US pricing. Plus you get a UK keyboard and plug.
     
  13. SCOLANATOR macrumors 6502a

    SCOLANATOR

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2013
    Location:
    UK
    #13
    It's 15% and it's not free AppleCare, it's a free three year warranty - similar but no phone support. If you can get that then there's not much point in buying from the US.
     
  14. rMBP2013 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2013
    Location:
    Sydney
    #14
    I did the same thing. Purchased from Canada and live in Sydney.

    Saved $300+
     
  15. jondunford macrumors 6502

    jondunford

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2013
    Location:
    Going for a poo Moderator
    #15
    yeah my £2400 one was actually £2040 but would have still been cheaper full price in America -.-

    and i thought the same about the warranty but mine says it expires in a year so I'm kinda pissed i didn't spend the token amount upgrading it as i thought it was just to extend phone support like you said =-/
     
  16. sarakn macrumors 6502a

    sarakn

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2013
    #16
    There are some states that still charge sales tax for MM. OP should not worry about sales tax at all because even if he is charged, he gets it back when he returns home at customs. Just show receipt.
     
  17. sabbyp, Nov 3, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2013

    sabbyp macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2013
    #17
    if you get your US taxes refunded when you come into the uk, they'll slap on VAT (20%) on there, it's better not to disclose!

    edit: there are limited sales tax refunds in the states, the only scheme I can think of is http://www.taxfreetexas.com/requirements.html which is obviously, only for texas. It's not like VAT at all.
     
  18. sarakn macrumors 6502a

    sarakn

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2013
    #18
    Thanks... I was thinking about that part once I replied. :)
     
  19. Tfb macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    #19
    You're supposed to declare the item as you return to the UK. If it's above the amount you're permitted, they'd charge you.

    Practically nobody does that, but it's what you're supposed to do.

    People discard all the packaging and try to conceal the fact that they are essentially buying to import.

    It kind of surprises me that there is no pushback against this on these forums, when there are people who will push back against getting an edu discount when you're not a student - like it's fine to deceive customs officials but not Apple Co.

    You might as well get the edu discount while you're also doing the funny business with customs...
     
  20. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #20
    The import tax for a laptop computer in the UK is 0%, so might as well declare it.
     
  21. amzchhabra macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2010
    Location:
    London, UK
    #21
    I went through the maths of this last week, and yes it is cheaper to purchase from the US (while paying state tax and not declaring it in the UK), however you are stuck with a US keyboard, and looking at ifixit's website, replacing the keyboard doesn't look easy (too much glue involved it seems).

    Therefore I went the different route, and purchased as a student in the UK, got 15% off and 3 years applecare (without phone support) all in, and about £20 cheaper than the US price after state tax.

    If you know someone in University, get them to order it for you, alternatively take your chances and google how to get 15% off Apple stuff :)
     

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