1) Sign up for a MyPoints account at www.mypoints.com
2) Once signed up, use the Apple Store affiliate link from the My Points website to earn 2 points per dollar spent / ie a MacBook for $1500 would earn you 3000 points which is equivalent to $25.
3) If you are signed up for VISA extras (and you have a VISA based debit card) you can earn Visa Extras points (typically 2 per dollar)
4) If you have it use your Paypal Debit Card (which earns you 1.5% back). If you link a checking account with it, such as a Wachovia account and sign up for VISA extras here's what will occur when you purchase from the Apple Store online:
1) Link from MyPoints website
2) Find Apple Product of your choice
3) Add to Cart
4) Pay with Paypal Debit Card that is linked to a checking account as a backup funding source.
5) Paypal will use whatever balance you have in your Paypal account, then debit your checking account as if you used your debit card
6) You will earn 1.5% from MyPoints, 1.5% from Paypal, 1.5% from VISA extras
If you live in South Carolina or have a family member living in South Carolina this coming weekend is completely tax free. The Apple Store will reflect this and you will not be charged sales tax. This could = greater than $75 in savings. This would make even shipping it to you in another state valuable - if you have a relative or friend in South Carolina that you can have your purchases delivered to!
Other ways to save at the Apple Store:
1) Most Apple retail stores will be running specials ... the Apple Retail stores have typically run 10% off sales on "Black Friday"
2) Check eBay for gift certificates - last year I bought several $100 and $500 gift cards from eBay sellers that didn't want them for $87 and $460 respectively.
3) Note any and all rewards programs and make sure you know by which means you receive those rewards. For instance, PayPal rewards you for using your debit card in a CREDIT type transaction, whereas Wachovia rewards VISA EXTRAS for using your card as a debit.
4) If shopping with a smaller reseller ask for a cash discount and pay with cash.
5) Note that stores like Best Buy and Circuit City often have printable coupons that do not exclude Apple Computers (but usually exclude iPods) - Some Best Buy and some Circuit City locations in the US carry Apple Computers. Best Buy also has a rewards program that is essentially the same as above and earns you points towards gift cards and merchandise.
6) CompUSA stores have had 10% off sales in the past and some are opening at 11:59PM Thanksgiving Day!
7) Amazon.com often has rebates on Apple computers.
8) Make sure you remember to check the Special Deals section at APPLE.COM
* If you have any tips please feel free to add them to the comments for us all to share. Thanks!