Apple Australia Black Friday Sale: It’s All About Gift Cards

Apple Australia Black Friday Sale: It’s All About Gift Cards

Apple’s annual “Black Friday” sale is happening in its retail stores and online until midnight tonight. The big difference this year? Rather than taking money off some products, Apple is offering Apple Store gift cards when you purchase major hardware items. Our verdict? That’s not as good as a proper saving.

Buy a Mac and you get a $150 gift card. The iPad Air scores a $75 card; other iPad models come with a $50 card. The iPod Touch offers a $50 card; iPod nano models get a $25 card, as does the Apple TV. Various third-party hardware products also score either $25 or $50 cards; the full list is on the Australian Apple site.

The problem with this approach is you don’t gain money you can spend anywhere you like — you only gain credit which can also be used with Apple. Yes, you could give the gift cards as presents to someone else, or use them for additional accessories, but that’s not the same as an actual saving. You can’t put an Apple Store Gift Card on your mortgage.

Case in point: the $150 card for Mac purchases might seem appealing, but it only makes sense models which cost under $1500. For anything more than that, you’d be better off hunting down one of the regular 10 per cent off deals at other retailers, since that puts more money in your pocket.

One other sneaky element? Apple’s terms and conditions for the promotion note:

Except where the Australian Consumer Law applies, if the qualifying product is returned, your refund or exchange may be reduced by the full face value of the Apple Store Gift Card.

If I ended up with an item so defective that it wasn’t fit for purpose, I’d be reminding Apple firmly that I was entitled to a full refund under Australian law. While it does acknowledge that prospect here, Apple has often shown a dismissive attitude to local consumer law, so you need to be prepared to stand up for your rights.


  • Pretty crappy “sale” really, but you have to expect that of Apple, they are doing it so tough.

  • And I was looking forward to a discount on a rMBp…
    I guess most MacBook’s are still cheaper than similarly spec’d ultra books. (Samsung, Sony, Dell)

  • For those who want to buy just one item from Apple (e.g. a set of headphones) and not buy anything else from them, these cards are a joke. Best to tee up a mate who will buy your Apple card at face value (or slightly lower) before heading in so you can actually save some money.

    And don’t forget, other retail stores often have the same items, but cheaper. Case in point: The HP Photosmart 7520 e-All-in-One Printer advertised on the site for $249.95 ($199.95 if you actually got the discount instead of just a gift card) is $165 at Harvey Norman (it’s actually $215, but there’s a $50 cashback).

    Only way the printer would be cheaper for consumers is if they could trade their gift card for money AND get the $50 cashback (not sure if it’s just a HN exclusive deal or if it’s just $50 cashback in general)

      • Thanks for the clarification.

        In that case, my original point still stands about Apple being cheaper if you can ditch the card and get cash for it, otherwise, just stop by any other retailer and buy it.

  • Got iPad air for 891 or something silly like that instead of 899… The sales person wasn’t expecting a discount to be applied to the iPad but it happened anyway. Then I used the $75 gift card to buy a case in a separate transaction so in the end I got the case pretty much for free.

    Wouldn’t have happened that way if I bought it yesterday so no complaints here

    • The cases are pretty cheap if you buy from some accessories shops. For a smart cover, it is about 20 bucks

  • For those who dont know this yet, officework sell the ipad air at 568, so does bigw.
    I bought my macbook air at the goodguys at 980, somewhere else like jbhifi or dicksmith have the regular 10% off which the macbook air started at 989.

  • I bought the Mac Air online with the expectation of the $150 gift card to buy the Microsoft Office later. When the invoice arrived in my inbox, surprisingly they deducted $150 off the Mac Air and sent me a gift card too! That’s $300 savings provided that you want to spend something else with Apple 🙂

  • i bought an ipod touch for my boy thining I could use the $50 in the itunes store. Oh no. Only redeemable in store for Apple stuff, not itunes. damn.

Show more comments

Comments are closed.

Log in to comment on this story!