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You know we’re always hunting for the best prices. But when it comes to electronics, the cheapest model isn’t always the best laptop for the money. A great budget laptop may fit easily into your monthly financial plan, but if you end up buying extra storage or another laptop in one to two years, then you might be better off spending a little more money up front on a laptop that will serve you well over time.
Before you shop for a new laptop, consider how you’ll use it. Will it be primarily used for online bill paying, internet surfing, and light household needs? Or will it be used for school or work? Do you need a gaming laptop? Consider how much storage and RAM you need to operate frequently used apps. Generally speaking, the more storage and RAM you get, the higher the price will be.
A quick tip: One way to save a little cash on a new laptop is to buy last year’s model. If there is something that’s just been released, chances are you can pick up last year’s model for a deeper discount. You can also find great deals on electronics during Prime Day, Black Friday, and other holidays.
For the most up-to-date deals on electronics, download the KCL app or text DEALS to 57299.
Here are the Best Laptops for the Money
1. Acer Aspire 5 A515 Slim Laptop
You often see the Acer brand on lists for the best budget laptops, and they are a great option if you’re on a tight budget. The Acer Aspire 5 comes in two storage options, but we think the Acer Aspire 5 A515-45-R74Z Slim Laptop ($529.99, Amazon) is the better one since you get double the storage for just $200 more. Buying a laptop with more storage now can save you big bucks in the long run. Why? Because you won’t have to buy an external hard drive or another computer when the other one fills up too fast.
But in case you primarily use your laptop for working on documents and casually browsing the web, we recommend the Acer Aspire 5 A515-56-32DK Slim Laptop ($379.99, Amazon), which has 128 GB storage.
2. Lenovo IdeaPad 3 14″ Laptop
This is a great option for a home laptop ($609.99, Amazon) because it has enough storage (256 GB) for using online apps like Facebook and ordering on Amazon. But you’re not paying for a bunch of stuff you don’t need. It also boasts a wide screen of 14 inches and a backlit keyboard, and reviewers rave about its fast performance.
Related: In Our Opinion, This Is the Best iPhone for the Money
3. Dell 2022 Newest Inspiron 15 3511 Laptop
This Dell Inspiron 15 laptop ($544.83, Amazon) already comes equipped with the latest Windows 11 Home, saving you the hassle of upgrading from Windows 10. It features a 15.6-inch screen and a handy 16GB RAM to keep multiple apps running smoothly. Reviewers like that it’s super lightweight and that the graphics are pretty crystal clear. Just know that some reviewers wish the battery life was longer.
4. ASUS ZenBook 13 OLED Ultra-Slim Laptop
Amazon often offers the ASUS ZenBook ($899.99, Amazon) at a slight discount. The best price we’ve seen was $649.99 in 2023. Reviewers like that it comes equipped with everything you might need for school or professional work, including Windows 10 and 512GB of disk space. It’s speedy, lightweight, and well constructed.
If you do a lot of number crunching, this laptop with its built-in number pad may be the deciding factor for you.
5. HP Pavilion Laptop 15t-eg200
This laptop ($999.99, HP.com) may not have a ton of bells and whistles, but it’s a solid offering for the price. It comes with Windows 11 Home, a 15.6-inch screen, 16 GB memory, and 512 GB of storage. Since it’s custom-built, you can modify the color, operating system, and processor options. You just might have to pay an additional fee depending on which features you choose. For example, if you want more storage, you can upgrade to 1TB for $100 more.
6. Microsoft Surface Laptop 5 (2022)
With the Microsoft Surface Laptop 5 ($1,732.99, Amazon), you get a 15-inch touch screen, 512GB of storage with Windows 11, plus long battery life for less than half the price of the Microsoft Surface Pro 8 with 1TB of storage. Reviewers like the large 15-inch display screen and fast Intel i7 for a speedy performance.
It comes with a light-up keyboard, and it’s super lightweight, making it easy for traveling. It’s also a great option if you prefer a touchscreen display.
7. HP Envy 17t High-Performance Laptop
If you’re working from home or doing school work, consider this laptop ($1,040, Amazon). We’ve seen the price bounce around for the last few months, and at its peak, it was selling for $1,279. It also boasts 1TB of storage already included in the price, which is good if you’re working with graphics or video. While this laptop costs more than $1,000, it feels like a good purchase when you compare it to Premium HP Spectre x360 Convertible 2-in-1 Business Laptop ($1,999, Amazon).
8. Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 (14″ Intel) Laptop
If you’re a teacher or a student, you can save money buying directly from Lenovo. You have to verify your status with ID.me, but it’s worth taking a little time to save yourself some big bucks. Even if you’re not an educator, you can buy the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 ($1,280, Lenovo) at a deep discount (if you opt for less RAM) compared to the prices we found on Amazon ($2,299, Amazon).
Note that new customers can unlock $100 on their first order when they sign up for email offers.
9. DELL XPs 15 Laptop
The Dell XPS 15 Laptop ($1,549, Dell.com) is consistently getting great reviews as one of the top laptops on the market. Reviewers like its speedy processor, included software programs, and high RAM to keep multitasking running smoothly. We found it for about $500 less when you buy directly from Dell versus purchasing it at Best Buy. And depending on what features you select, we’ve seen it on sale on Amazon for $1,800 (it just runs out of stock quickly).
When you buy with Dell, you can get free 2-day delivery. Dell also price matches and will offer rewards with this purchase.