Looks like the way the school season ended is very much how it's going to begin in a lot of ways. Thanks to the global pandemic, schools across the country are struggling with the very notion of whether to do things live or online. Even if some of your classes end up being in person, it's almost a guarantee that remote work is going to be part of the new normal for a while. If that's the case for you, then you're going to need a laptop. It's no longer an option, especially if most of your classrooms are going to be conducted using video conferencing and most of your homework is going to be saved into the cloud. We've got a roundup of great places to save and great laptops to buy just for you.
Whether you're a parent looking for a laptop for your high school student or a college student paying your own way, one thing that's probably true is you aren't looking to spend a fortune on a new laptop. You need something functional, portable, and affordable. You'll need powerful enough graphics to run programs like Zoom (and maybe a little TikTok on the side?). Depending on the work you do, you'll also want something accessible enough for word processors, saving to the cloud, and running basic software that varies from Adobe Photoshop to iTunes.
Best Laptop Student Discounts
Before we even get into specifics, you should know there are plenty of places online that offer student discounts. Anyone who can prove they go to school like with a .edu email address or sometimes through other methods like a form that checks college databases can get a huge chunk taken off any computer. Here are some of the best places to do just that.
This program applies to a wide variety of stuff, including headphones and cameras and smartphones. But you can also save $100 on Apple MacBooks, up to $300 on Surface Books, and $50 on tablets.
Not only can you save 2% on any computer, you can earn up to $100 off right now thanks to a Learn from Anywhere event. You can also save on monitors and other accessories, and many of these deals are focused solely on students.
Apple has exclusive pricing for students and educators. Apple's program targets the back-to-school time period and isn't year round like some others. You can save a chunk on MacBook laptops, get 20% off AppleCare+, and even get a free pair of AirPods when you buy a device with education pricing. Read more about this program at iMore.
Automatically save 10% on anything as a student or the parent of a student. That includes Surface tablets, accessories, and more.
HP has a wide range of products, and you can save at least a little bit on all of it if you're a student. Get a new laptop, sure, but HP might also be how you outfit your dorm with a new printer or get yourself a headset for private listening.
While not a direct way to save on a laptop, the benefits of Prime Student may pay off a lot more in the long run. You get a six-month trial that includes a lot of Prime benefits, including free two-day shipping, unlimited Prime Video streaming, unlimited photo storage on Prime Photos, and more. You'll even get Student-exclusive deals. After the six months are up, you get 50% off Amazon Prime.
Best Back-to-School Laptop Deals
The laptops under this category will mostly be machines already on sale regardless of what student discounts might also be applied. In other words, you might be able to save even more using available student discounts. They also need to be well-rounded machines capable of doing what you need them to do while you're traveling to school or getting online for remote classwork. You can pay for extras like Office 365, but in some cases you'd be surprised how much you can get away with using programs that save directly to the cloud like Google Docs. That's up to you, of course, but it might also be up to your budget.
Includes an Intel Celeron N4020 2.8GHz processor, 4GB RAM, 16GB eMMC flash storage, and an 11.6-inch display. Has USB-C connectivity, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth.
Specs include an AMD Ryzen 5 4500U processor, AMD Radeon graphics, 8GB RAM, and a 256GB solid state drive. Comes with Windows 10 Home as the operating system. Has a 15.6-inch 1080p multi-touch display. The battery can last longer than 14 hours.
The Dell laptop is a 2-in-1 that can also work as a tablet. It has a 4K touchscreen, an Intel Core i7 processor, 16GB RAM, and a 512GB SSD with 32GB Intel Optane H10 for speeding up frequently used programs. It also has Thunderbolt 3, Wi-Fi 6, and a fingerprint reader.
These laptops are simple, easy to use, and designed with multimedia in mind. The MacBook Air comes with Touch ID, an Intel Core i3 processor, 8GB RAM, and a 256GB solid state drive.
Specs include an AMD Ryzen 7 processor, a Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 graphics card, 8GB RAM, and a 512GB solid state drive. There's a 14-inch 1080p display, the Windows 10 operating system, USB-C, and the laptop is powerful enough for virtual reality.
What to Look For
If you haven't quite found what you're looking for in the list above, just know that things change all the time. Laptop deals come and go like the wind. Student discounts can change as well because those programs often have a lot of exclusive time-sensitive ways to save. Not only will we continue to update this page, but you should continue to keep an eye on all the big retailers, especially those with back-to-school programs. The Apple program, for example, is not a year round thing. The deals are rare and limited.
In addition to checking out main retailers like Best Buy, you might also want to keep an eye on eBay storefronts. You probably won't be able to use the main site's student discount program through eBay, but this is a way for retailers to offer special discounts the main storefront can't. Most retailers have an eBay page, too, including
We may earn a commission for purchases using our links. Learn more.