Buying consumer electronics can be a very addictive—and expensive—hobby. However, just because you want to keep your finger on the pulse of tech doesn’t mean you have to suffer from self-imposed bankruptcy with every update cycle. Whether you’re buying a smartphone in the Philippines or just looking to upgrade your gaming console, here are some ways to save money when indulging yourself in your tech-buying hobby.
Do research beforehand
Buying gadgets is an expensive hobby no matter where you are or your standing in life, so you need to be careful of what you’re buying. This entails doing proper research on your desired item or gadget first even before thinking of putting down money for it, whether it’s a preorder or an outright purchase. Look up first impressions and reviews online, as well as comparisons to previous models. Watch video unboxings and demos as well. By doing this you can find out in advance if the item you’re looking to purchase has any design flaws or serious issues that you may not be able to find out until after you’ve purchased it yourself. This saves you a lot of time and money, and could enable you to find a better (or cheaper!) item in the long run.
When buying from a shop or store, don’t purchase from the first shop you find your item in
Shopping for gadgetry in the Philippines means that you’re usually spoiled for choice on where you can buy your gadget of choice from. However, just because the first shop you stop in has your item for an attractive price doesn’t mean you should make a deal right then and there. Walk around and canvass the other shops for their prices. It’s happened to everyone—buying a vaunted gadget or big-ticket item right off, and then finding out that they could have paid much less for the same item in the shop next door. Avoid this post-purchase heartbreak by doing the necessary legwork.
The Philippines is no slouch when it comes to online stores too, at least when gadgetry or tech is involved, so get to surfing. Not only will you be able to look through a wider range of products similar to your desired gadget, but you can also immediately compare stats without having to constantly quiz shop owners and staff about them. Of course, it’s going to be cheaper as well, as usually shops in popular malls and establishments have the habit of passing on their rent expenses to their customer. Buying online lets you avoid that price trap. You also save quite a bit by having your gadget delivered directly to you, too!
Always make sure that the shop you’re buying from provides a warranty
No matter how well we take care of our new gadgets, there will come a time that they will be needing repairs or an outright replacement. By ensuring that the shop you’re buying from has a warranty period, you can make that future expense a bit easier on your wallet, at least until the warranty period itself expires. Just make sure to keep the gadget’s receipt and packaging in a safe place.
Don’t be afraid to haggle or ask for discounts
Shopping in the Philippines also gives you the freedom to bargain with shop owners and vendors. Not only is it accepted, but it’s also very much expected. Just be reasonable with your haggling, and don’t expect it to work every single time, as these sellers still do need to make a profit when all’s said and done. A good tactic here is that if they won’t budge on the asking price, you can ask for freebies instead, such a protective case or screen protector.
If the price seems too good to be true, it usually is
This applies to everything you buy under the sun, not just gadgets: if it seems too cheap, then it’s most likely a faulty unit, an illegally-acquired unit, or even both. Don’t even bother giving the item a cursory look or even a moment’s consideration. Trust us, whatever savings you’ll be making is sure to bite you back in the future. With that said, only buy from shops that have a permanent location, and not just stalls that can easily pack up at a moment’s notice.
Don’t let your love of technology empty out your wallet. By keeping these simple and easy-to-remember ways in mind, you can enjoy being on the bleeding edge of technology while keeping yourself far away from the precipice of bankruptcy.