Apple Education Store
As employees of the University of Wales, Aberystwyth, Anna and I are entitled to buy products through the Apple Education Store and thereby receive discounts. The Apple Education Store states
“If you are a student, teacher, lecturer, administrator or other staff member in education you qualify for special discounted pricing on Apple computers, software and select third party products.”
Apple Education Store Savings
With that in mind and with the purchase of a new iMac imminent I decided to check out the savings on offer. We had bought products from the Apple Education Store before and had saved quite a bit so it’s always worth remembering to use it. You can browse the Apple Education Store as guest or buy online as an authorised purchaser. The latter requires that you are connected via your universities network. I tried accessing it from home and it wouldn’t work, not even if I was connected using the universities VPN. We therefore waited until we we at the university and checked the prices out from Anna’s office.
I was surprised to find that there seem to be at three price tiers:
- The normal retail price on the Apple Store
- The reduced educational price from the Apple Education Store when browsing as a guest
- A further reduced price when browsing from the universities network
The differences in prices were considerable too.
|Apple Retail Store||Apple Education Store||Apple Education Store via University Network|
|27" 3.2GHz iMac||£1599.00||£1503.60||£1432.60|
|1TB Fusion Drive Upgrade||£160.00||£150.00||£140.40|
Placing an Order at the Apple Education Store
Needless to say we decided to order my new iMac from the Apple Education Store using the University Network. This wasn’t quite so easy though. We added the items to our basket, clicked on the checkout button and all seemed fine. We then logged into our Apple account and checked the delivery details etc. The next step in the list of steps was the Payment Details page, but there simply wasn’t a button to get to it from the delivery details page. No ‘Continue’ button, no ‘Next’ button, in fact there were no buttons at all. The checkout process just came to a dead end and there was no way to proceed. There wasn’t even a polite notice along the lines of ‘we need to check your eligibility to buy from the Education Store, please call this number’. There was nothing.
In the end, after some head scratching and starting the process over again we gave in and had to call the sales number at the top of the page and process the order on the telephone instead. The trouble with this was that the prices they came up with were closer to those from the Apple Education Store whilst browsing as a guest, not the enhanced savings we’d get when browsing through the university. We got there in the end though and after a while on the phone and some ‘talking to their supervisors’ we were able to place the order at the more reduced prices and all was fine. That was until they messed it up a little by adding a Thunderbolt Cable to the order rather than a Thunderbolt to FireWire Adaptor as we had ordered. They did at least realise they had done it wrong and proceeded to sort it out for us via several emails and phone calls.
Hopefully now everything is in the pipeline, the order is placed and being processed and I should be the owner of a brand new iMac soon.
As is our way, we paid for the order using Anna’s credit card which gets her 1% cash back, so in effect we saved another £16.19 on top of the educational discount as well. That’s a total saving of £295.68 so far.
I then order some extra RAM for the machine from Crucial. Rather than paying the extra £160 that Apple charge, it’s much cheaper to buy it from a third party supplier. Crucial had a 16GB (2x 8GB) kit for £117.59 saving a further £42.41, taking our total savings up to £338.09. I tried to order this but it was out of stock. I then noticed that they also sold the 8GB Ram chips individually and if I added two of these to my shopping cart, noir only were they in stock, but they were 1p cheaper too at £117.58. Silly I know, but it meant I could order them and save a little bit more.
On top of that I use Quidco which gives me cash back for shopping online – It actually gives you discounts and cutback in store too, but in this instance I got 7% cash back for the purchase of the RAM which resulted in savings of a further £6.86. You can sign up to Quidco here: http://www.quidco.com/user/3031942/1733308/ It’s worth doing as you’ll get cash back on a surprising number of purchases from a wide variety of stores both on and offline and they pay out regularly too.
Overall this means we have saved £344.96 on my purchase of a new iMac. Not bad really, and I guess I should have paid for the extra Ram using Anna’s credit card too for a further 1% cash back on that.