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Where is the Cheapest Country to Buy a Laptop?

Discussion in 'Notebook News and Reviews' started by Andrew Baxter, Dec 16, 2007.

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  1. Andrew Baxter

    Andrew Baxter - Super Moderator

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    As worldwide currency rates fluctuate and the U.S. dollar tanks we're seeing lots of tourists flock into the country and leave with hordes of electronic goods. Is the U.S. really that much cheaper than the rest of the world for buying?

    In order to get an idea of how much laptop prices vary around the world we used the various Dell sites in each country to configure the price for an Inspiron 1520 with the following configuration:

    • <div>Intel Core 2 Duo T7150</div>
    • <div>Windows Vista Premium</div>
    • <div>15.4&quot; WXGA Screen</div>
    • <div>2GB of RAM</div>
    • <div>160GB HD</div>
    • <div>8x DVD+/-RW Optical Drive</div>
    • <div>6-cell battery</div>
    • <div>Dell 1390 Wireless card</div>

    <table border="1" cellpadding="4"><tbody><tr><td>&nbsp;</td><td> USA</td><td> UK</td><td> Germany</td><td> Japan</td><td> Canada </td><td> Australia</td><td> China</td></tr><tr><td>Dell Inspiron 1520</td><td> $1,074</td><td> <span class="price_text_bold">&pound;579.01 </span></td><td>&euro;<span class="pricing_sale_price">879.01</span></td><td>140,830 Yen</td><td>$919 CAD</td><td>$1,657 AUD</td><td> 7998.12 Yuan</td></tr><tr><td>Converted to US Dollars</td><td> $1,074</td><td> $1,176</td><td> $1,279</td><td> $1,249</td><td> $901.95</td><td> $1,445</td><td> $1,085</td></tr></tbody></table>

    <br />Based on this we should all be rushing to Canada to buy our laptops, or at least a Dell Inspiron 1520. But a look at the basic Apple MacBook offering with the following specs:

    • Intel Core 2 Duo 2.0GHz
    • 80GB Hard Drive
    • Combo drive
    • 1GB RAM

    And a look at pricing around the world reveals that the U.S. is much cheaper than anywhere else for this Apple notebook.

    <table border="1" cellpadding="4"><tbody><tr><td>&nbsp;</td><td> USA</td><td> UK</td><td> Germany</td><td> Japan</td><td> Canada</td><td> Australia</td><td> China</td></tr><tr><td>Apple MacBook</td><td> $1,099</td><td> &pound;699</td><td> &euro;1,049</td><td>139,800 Yen</td><td> $1,249 CAD</td><td> $1,599</td><td> 10,498 Yuan</td></tr><tr><td>Converted to US Dollars</td><td> $1,099</td><td> $1,421</td><td>$1,527</td><td> $1,240</td><td> $1,225.83</td><td> $1,394.25</td><td>$1,424</td></tr></tbody></table>

    <br />Some of the worst laptop prices in the world belong to Australia, ironic since that country is closer than the U.S. to where notebooks are mostly designed and produced in Taiwan. So long as the U.S. dollar remains weak, it's a pretty sure bet consumer electronics in that country will remain cheaper than elsewhere. Which would explain all those European tourists stocking up on electronics goods to take back home. Just be careful about customs and tax declarations on the way back home!

     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 2, 2015
  2. stamar

    stamar Notebook Prophet

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    Doesnt this ignore that the dell is actually much cheaper in the us than canada because of the online coupon structure.

    If you chose a 1500$ usd dell, it would cost maybe 1800 in europe but 1100$ average in the us.
    The price difference for a dell is higher than you listed imo.
     
  3. f4ding

    f4ding Laptop Owner

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    I'm not so sure Taiwan is closer to Australia then to USA.
     
  4. Gaza

    Gaza Notebook Geek

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    Buying a laptop in Malaysia would be pretty cheap imo.
     
  5. Andrew Baxter

    Andrew Baxter - Super Moderator

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    It does ignore that fact yes, I was assuming an ignorant shopper was making the purchase in each case ;)

    Just compared list values.
     
  6. swarmer

    swarmer beep beep

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    Do the European prices include VAT? And do the US ones not include any sales tax? Adding my local sales tax to the US price (8.5% here in San Francisco, CA) brings it pretty darn close to the UK price... for the Dell at least, anyway. (There's still a significant gap with Apple's pricing... And of course not everyone pays as much sales tax.)
     
  7. yuio

    yuio NBR Assistive Tec. Tec.

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    yah, can't miss the coupons, wow take a look at apple; look how they screw anyone who is not American (nothing against Americans, just why should you get the better price? I think it should be close to equal)
     
  8. Sam

    Sam Notebook Virtuoso

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    Well, its important to factor in taxes too...like American states like Oregon with no sales tax, and Canada with lots of sales tax (10% or more, depending on where you are, except Alberta).
     
  9. stamar

    stamar Notebook Prophet

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    oh yes isnt canadian and euro sales tax like almost 20% unavoidable whereas in america it is normally 7% but as low as 0% and as high as 8.5%

    Youve got to factor in this data one more step to reality and the price difference is more like 50% at least.
     
  10. Cam_86

    Cam_86 Notebook Evangelist

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    Yeah, this seems pretty flawed. Like someone else said, the coupons in america can knock off, literally, 33% of the final price PLUS its easier to avoid GST/PST/VAT/etc...

    You should have put an extra column in for 'best price', where you used all applicable coupons, discounts and deals. I remember a few months ago, when i was configuring the 1520 i was planning on buying, the BEST price i could get on dell.ca was around $1500(T7300, 2 gigs of ram, 160gig hard drive, 8600GT) while i saw people on these forums with the exact same system in their sigs, with prices in the $1100 area.
     
  11. gaurav811

    gaurav811 Notebook Enthusiast

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    Ok.......I did this twice in my head so I must be pretty dumb if I get this wrong. But I`ll take the risk.

    Isn't this whole article BOGUS ....because I think if the US dollar looses value cost of importing goods in US increases while US goods sold in foreign countries get cheaper.
    For example if 1 USD = 32 TD(taiwan dollar) then something that costs 3200TD to make in taiwan will be available in US for 3200/32 = 100 USD.

    Now if USD looses value then say 1 USD = 30 TD and so something that costs 3200TD will cost 3200/30 = 106$.

    So, if the US $ values go down foreign made products like laptops should be more expensive in US and not less.

    So please correct me if I am wrong but it seems like this whole article is written on wrong math !!:confused:
     
  12. Sgt_Strider

    Sgt_Strider Notebook Evangelist

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    I think you are right. I'm pretty sure Taiwan is a lot closer to the U.S/Canada than to Australia.
     
  13. Lysander

    Lysander AFK, raid time.

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    Taipei to Sydney = 7,098 km
    Taipei to Darwin = 4,194 km
    Taipei to Los Angeles = 10,939 km
    Taipei to New York City = 7,013 km

    So Australia is closer. The reasons are because of volume of sale, and because most of these computer companies are American.
     
  14. Tailic

    Tailic Notebook Deity

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    I did notice this trend working at Circuit City in Las Vegas. I happen to work at a store that is pretty close to the Strip (where all the major casinos are at) and we get a lot of foreign tourists shopping for notebooks. I've seen people from just about all around the world; a lot of which are really hard to sell notebooks to when they have very bad English.

    It seems they have the idea to travel to America/Vegas to party and to do their yearly Christmas shopping.
     
  15. kworld

    kworld Notebook Guru

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    the hp dv6500 that costs 1135$ in the us
    costs around 1600$ here in egypt(t7200 and 8400gs),and my 8510w isn't even available here yet
     
  16. kworld

    kworld Notebook Guru

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    the distance isn't calculated that way,it's calculated by the shipping distance between each town,and i think the shipping distance between Taiwan and the US is longer
    but I agree that the volume of the sales and the amount of the taxes is the things that control it,the price in the us may be even lower in the us than in Taiwan itself in some cases
     
  17. Creekz

    Creekz Notebook Enthusiast

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    guys if your talking about dell.. then the cheapest is in malaysia since the power plant of dell is in penyang.. malaysia also is the supplier to other countries like singapore, japan, and many other country including in europe or even U.S... justcheck the www.dell.com.my

    i read someone here whos in europe when his dell 1530 arrive.. it has the seal made in malaysia :)

    so i think it depends in which country are you living.. example if your in malaysia then dell is the cheapest, or if your in korea then samsung and LG.. if your in U.S apple and of course taiwan for asus is the cheapest if compared to other country..
     
  18. stamar

    stamar Notebook Prophet

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    No
    The company quanta makes its notebooks in malaysia, and china and I think vietnam now.

    They are the largest notebook manufacturer in the world they make everyones notebooks including apple mbp, dell lattitude etc

    They are a taiwanese company though.
    So dells are made by whoever makes them. The inspiron in made by a different company called compal in china.
    Dell doesnt make computers.

    Everything you stated is incorrect. All apples dells etc are made by taiwanese companies. None are made in the us.

    LG and samsung are made in korea. Only that stands to reason that they be cheaper there.

    ALL meaning 100% of notebooks are made in the far east. not one model is made anywhere else, its not 99.9999999

    The 5 largest taiwanese companies make over 90% of notebooks themselves.5% are made by the 5-10 smaller makers.
    That leaves fewer than 5% of notebooks are made by korean and japanese companies. And then youve reached 100%

    edit ps
    dell 1530 is made by wistron, a taiwanese company, in malaysia. Wistron is the 3rd largest manufacturer. It is not made by dell dell is a completely fabricationless company, whatever office they have in malaysia doesnt manufacture.

    Im not trying to split hairs wistron could have a factory in malaysia that only makes dells in fact i think thats correct.
     
  19. lokster

    lokster Notebook Deity

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    This math is right, ACTUALLY here in the philippines Electronic goods are expensive.

    i bought a laptop through my uncle in the states at 674$ thats around 28,308Php. FOR THE SAME SPECED LAPTOP, here in the philippines is around 49,999Php, thats around 1190$!!!! so there is a big difference here. with the Dollar getting weaker its definitely the cheapest place to get electronics, for Philippines that is.

    electronics in the states are getting cheaper with the weaker dollar, here in the philippines we can earn more at home and buy outside.
     
  20. dznutz

    dznutz Notebook Consultant

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    if you add in the tax u.s. is cheaper
     
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