I Didn’t Buy an iPad (and am proud of it, too)!

This article was written by Denise. 

Where I work, everyone seems to have jumped on the iPad craze.  And why not?  IPads are cool.  I mean, they are REALLY cool.

For a long time I coveted those iPads.  I’d see a coworker using one and I’d start to drool (a la Pavlov’s dog)!  What internet addict like me wouldn’t want a cool new way to access the net while on the go, right?

And then it happened… I had a chance to buy an iPad for only $325.  AND I DIDN’T DO IT!

“What?!?!?!?!,” you gasped?

The frugal within me took control of my emotions and won out over the techy geek in me.  But it was a close match between the two.

How It Started

One day I was in a meeting with a couple coworkers.  The one guy had just bought a new iPad2 and the other guy was admiring it.  Guy #2 has a top-of-the-line 64 GB first generation iPad and commented that if he could sell his first gen iPad he would like to buy the new model.

“I’ll give you $300 for it,” I joked.  I never thought he would consider such a low-ball offer.  But to my shock, he said he would strongly consider it.

The next day he approaches me and says he will sell it to me for $325.  This stopped me in my tracks.  I was ready to trade $300 of my heard earned bucks for an iPad, but was I willing to spend an extra $25?

This is where the great internal debate began between frugal me and tech geek me.

On one hand, $325 for a barely used 64 GB iPad was a steal of a deal.  It would almost be foolish to pass up such a deal, would it not?

On the other hand, $325 was a lot of money for something I didn’t really need.  And as cool as iPads are, I was not convinced that it met my needs.

Understand Your Needs

I did some serious soul searching with myself.  What did I really want out of a tablet?  Here is the list I developed:Wifi internet ability (the iPad meets this criteria)

  • Ability to read e-books (the iPad meets this criteria)
  • Compact size for travel (the iPad does NOT meet this criteria)
  • Affordable (the iPad does not meet this criteria)
  • Ability to view flash (this is a big FAIL for the iPad)

In the end, I decided the Velocity Micro T301 Cruz better suited my needs.  At just $159.95 it was half the price of the used iPad I was offered.  It also met all my needs, including a compact size that I could keep in my purse for internet browsing on the go.

Conclusion

Avoiding impulse buys is not always easy to do.  It takes real will-power and personal strength to avoid making an impulse buy that you may later regret.  It is always smart, before buying anything, to take a few moments (or even longer) to ask yourself if you really NEED the item (want vs. need), is the item worth the money, does the item meet your needs or would something else work better, and will you really get the use out of the item that you are envisioning.

In the end, I am glad my co-worker did not accept my impulse offer of $300 for the iPad.  Despite being a great deal, it would not have been a wise way for me to spend $300 when an item costing half the amount better meets my needs.

Have you made any impulse buys that you have later regretted?  What techniques do you use to prevent spending money on items you really don’t need?


Comments

I Didn’t Buy an iPad (and am proud of it, too)! — 19 Comments

  1. Congratulations on thinking it through! Impulse buying is usually not a good idea, and laying out all what you need vs. what you want is important. Enjoy your new toy, knowing that it best suits your needs & budget!

  2. Moneycone, you are right – research is very important. This is proof that bigger and more expensive isn’t always better.

    Maggie, I am loving my new toy! When my Mom as in the hospital last weekend I had it with me and it kept us both from going stir crazy! And I am now addicted to Suduko, too. LOL!

  3. it’s amazing what happens when something is a mere $25 over what we’re willing to pay. i have trouble crossing that internal threshold as well.

    congrats on your willpower and on your new purchase!

  4. I’ve also refrained from buying an iPad – it just doesn’t meet my productivity needs. For now I’m sticking with my blackberry, laptop, and good old fashioned paper. Let us know how the tablet works out – it’s good to know about cheaper alternatives!

  5. I have not made any impluse buys lately. I do own an ipad, but I won it in a contest. I do not use it. I would much rather have my laptop. However it is awesome for my kids. If I did not own one, knowing what I know about it for kids, I would consider saving for it.

  6. Retire By 40 – Nope, no monthly service fee. Of course, I am limited to getting on the internet with it to where I can find free wi-fi (my house, McDonalds, Starbucks, hospitals, etc. … free wifi isn’t too hard to find anymore).

  7. I also stopped myself from investing in an ipad. Like your experience, I stopped to mull it over and realized it was something I wanted but, until it existed, I never even needed. Sometimes it’s easy to talk yourself into needing something that, deep down, you really just want. Sometimes you should give in to your wants and treat yourself, but not if it means forking out something beyond your means. I make much smaller impulse buys sometimes, and these can add up too. It might be time for another budget review!

  8. Congrats on resisting and making a better choice for your needs! I bought a used iPad in May (for $300, oddly) and have absolutely loved it. I use it constantly. However, I know it’s not for everyone.

    I think it’s really hard for people in general to pass up a bargain. I stopped going to yard sales because I constantly bought stuff I didn’t need “because it’s just such a good deal.” Which I ended up putting in a yard sale of my own later.

  9. I love this post! You thought through your options and found that the lower cost option met your needs. So many purchases can be made thoughtfully and money saved if emotion (oh!shiny iPad!) is removed and logic used to determine what works best for you. And that it’s half the price? So much better!

  10. I didn’t get an iPad, but I did get a phone… when it comes to something like an iPad though I’d rather just go all the way and get a laptop. At least there’s a lot more that I can do with that.

  11. It is not easy to overcome impulse buying, but you did it. Great work! The iPad is awesome thought. My parents have one. I can’t bring myself to purchase one. They cost to much for a toy that isn’t going to help me with my online business.

    I will wait or check out the %159 option you picked up.

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