The Apple Store will resume offering gift cards with certain purchases, but the exact values ​​will vary.


This story is part of Christmas gift guide 2021, our list of ideas by subject, recipient and price, so that you can find the perfect gift.

There is lots of discounts on Apple gear this Black Friday Weekend, but the Apple Store probably isn’t the best place to find them. On Wednesday, the company announced its offers for “The Apple Shopping Event,” which runs until Black Friday Cyber ​​Monday. As always, the Apple Store doesn’t offer much in terms of discounts on sticker prices for iPhones, iPads, Macs and AirPods – but it does offer gift cards.

The exact voucher amount each product receives varies, however Apple’s preview page is a bit misleading. Rather than giving out the exact details, Apple decided to hide details for certain parts of its product line by grouping them into categories. For example, AirPods can “get up to $ 75 Apple Gift Card” when you purchase a set of AirPods (second or third generation), AirPods Pro, or AirPods Max. The key phrase is “up to”.

Continue reading: The best Apple deals so far

Browse the fine print Apple has a handy table that reveals the actual deal details. If you buy regular second or third generation AirPods, you will only get a $ 25 gift card and the AirPods Pro will get a $ 50 net gift card. Only the $ 549 worth of AirPods Max qualify for the full $ 75 gift card.

It gets even trickier with accessories such as the AirTags four-pack. Typically, Apple costs $ 99 for this product and has placed this product in the “up to $ 50” gift card category. A quick look at the fine print reveals that you are actually receiving a $ 25 gift card.

While this is actually a pretty good deal for the pack of four – which isn’t discounted anywhere else as of this writing – it’s not quite as good as Apple’s teaser makes it seem.

Do you want a deal? It is worth looking elsewhere

Apple rarely discounts its products directly. If you’re instead looking for a deal on Apple products, you’d better shop at Amazon, Best Buy, B&H, Walmart, or countless other retailers.

the Apple Watch SE is $ 60 cheaper at Best Buy while Apple only offers a $ 50 gift card. AirPods Pro were regularly reduced to $ 159 in recent days on Amazon and Walmart – Apple is charging $ 249 and will only include a $ 50 gift card over the weekend.

Even if you buy with an Apple Card that gives you an extra 3% in cashback, you can still get behind depending on the product you buy.

Apple Store compared to other retailer savings


Gift card offer

Current savings

Apple Store “Punishment”

MacBook Air M1 512 GB

$ 100

$ 150

– $ 50

Apple Watch SE

$ 50

$ 60

– $ 10

Beats Studio Buds

$ 25

$ 50

– $ 25

AirPods Pro

$ 50

$ 90

– $ 40

Where Apple’s gift card deal could make sense

It’s worth noting that there is one potential scenario where you can get the most out of Apple’s generosity: trade-ins. While the company doesn’t always have the best trade-in deals, their process is among the simplest and easiest when it comes to returning old equipment and getting credit for it.

If you’re looking for an iPhone, Apple Watch, iPad, or Mac, you can trade in your device, get credit for the purchase, and still get the gift card. The latter will need to be used on a future purchase, but all in all, this could quickly add up to a nice savings.

If you use the company’s Education Store (especially useful for finding official discounts on Macs and iPads) and the Apple Card, you can make some solid savings on the proper disposal of your older device.

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