If you want to get a well-designed, feature-rich camera without spending a fortune, it’s worth waiting till big holidays and promotional periods, such as Black Friday or Cyber Monday. Besides, camera manufacturers frequently offer discounts and promotions when new camera models are released.
Experts say that the best time to buy a camera is in January, right after Christmas. Shops are usually full of lucrative offers because the high demand has passed and it is possible to purchase a powerful device at half its initial price.
Besides, you should monitor the offers in the second half of the year. During this period, companies try to ramp up their sales by discounting products. In other words, you may find a great camera for photography at a reasonable cost around the end of summer.
Several more seasonal sales to consider:
Easter holiday sales (March/April)
Amazon Prime Day (June/July)
Back-to-school sales (August/September)
Black Friday (usually around the end of November) and Cyber Monday (three days later) deals
Moreover, if you’ve decided on the camera you’d like to buy, you should monitor its price during major national holidays. Typically, brands use any important date to promote their products and lure buyers with reduced prices.
The best time of year to buy a camera is also dependent on your region. Quite often local stores organize flash sales and their equipment is available at a reduced cost only during those days. So, make sure to keep in touch with photography shops in your area.
Besides, you monitor their assortment on social networks and even sign up for a regular newsletter. With such options, you’ll be notified about advantageous offers immediately.
One of the most popular photography stores in San Francisco is Glass Key Photo. In New York, you can visit H and B Digital. Finding a local store is a breeze. You can do it by using Google Maps, Yelp, or such photography forums as Flickr, Reddit, and Fred Miranda Forum.
Such events are fantastic because there are lots of camera retailers offering their products in one place and allowing buyers to test their gear with no extra fees.
Besides, prices for cameras and other equipment are often lower than in regular stores because retailers do all possible to attract photographers and make them purchase offered products.
In America, you can visit the ClickCon photography conference, IBC exhibition, and Click Away conference to get a decent camera at a reasonable price. UK residents can go to The Photography Show in Birmingham to buy discounted equipment.
When do cameras go on sale? When manufacturers release new DSLR cameras, older models are sold at a reduced cost. Therefore, you can purchase powerful equipment at a lower price simply because there appeared a newer addition to the lineup.
Make sure to check out the January Consumer Electronics Show because it’s the event when upcoming camera releases are announced. A bit later, usually in February, those cameras enter the market. Keep tabs on brands during those months and you’re sure to find a good bargain without spending insane sums.
Many reputable camera stores offer nice deals throughout the year, so it makes sense to keep an eye on your favorite manufacturers. In fact, you can add items to your wish list and enable auto-notification when the price for the gear reduces.
Besides, you can take advantage of web browser extensions to stay in the loop of discounts on trading platforms:
For Amazon: Keepa, CamelCamelCamel, and Price Before.
For eBay: Terapeak, WatchCount, and Average Finder.
Besides, check out flash sales, warehouse clearances, and 'deal of the day' offers on such platforms as B&H Photo, Wex, Adorama, and Walmart.
Once again, if you want to be informed about all store’s news, including sales, it makes sense to sign up for its newsletters and mailing lists. Moreover, you can follow your favorite store on social networks because many flash sale discount codes are shared specifically there to boost engagement.
Sometimes, you don’t need to wait for the best time to buy DSLR camera, but should register on cashback websites like Quidco and Top Cashback. This way, you will get back part of the money that you spent on equipment. Typically, cashback is credited within 30 days, and after that, you receive some money back.
Keep tabs on international offers. No need to focus only on brick-and-mortar stores in your area. It is more advantageous to shop online because you can compare the cost of the same products sold in different countries. The most convenient platforms for making online purchases are eBay, Amazon, B&H Photo, Adorama and KEH Camera.
Use your connections. Joining photography associations and groups is also a nice idea because you can always learn useful information about upcoming sales. Besides, if you know that your colleagues are going to sell their gear, you can purchase those items at a lower cost than what brands charge.
Another advantage of being a member of a photography community is that you can get acquainted with people, who are brand ambassadors and have special brand discount codes. By giving these codes to other people, they receive a commission from the brand and buyers will get a nice camera or lens at a lower price. You can also follow such ambassadors on Instagram and Facebook.
Buy a used camera. Currently, it is very easy to find used cheap cameras in photography stores and on trading platforms, including Amazon and eBay. The best part is that sellers give a guarantee that a product fully corresponds to the description.
Wex and similar websites have a separate section where all used products are meticulously tested before they appear in a store. Besides, buyers receive a 12-month warranty for a product. Another popular website B&H Photo offers 90-day parts and labor warranties on used gear. If you want to buy a product from a private seller in your area, you can find one on Facebook Marketplace.
When buying used equipment, it’s paramount to scrutinize a camera and test it before paying. Online shoppers need to read the description attentively and even write to a seller to clarify any point. The condition rankings are also very helpful. Equipment may be ranked as Excellent, Mint, and Near Mint.
If you are going to buy a used budget video camera in person, you should take several test shots, try various modes, and check all controls. Photography stores usually allow checking second-hand gear.