Tips and tricks for getting a great deal on a gaming laptop

Razer Blade 18 laptop open showing screen and keyboard
(Image credit: Future)

Gaming laptops, like pretty much all gaming hardware these days, are pricey bits of kit. In fairness, they’re a long-term investment, and if what you’re shopping for is going to be your main platform for playing all the latest video games, it’s probably going to be well worth the money. 

That said, it’s still easy to overspend if you don’t do your homework on brands, models, components, and the rest. The best way to combat this is to lace up your boots and go deal hunting. But where do you start, and how do you know a good deal from a bad one when it comes to laptops? Online retailers don’t always make things easy, and we don’t blame you for being swept up in the excitement of seeing any discount at all these days. 

Lucky for you, we’ve pulled together a handy list of tips and tricks for finding the best gaming laptop deals for cheaper. These range from where to look, to when to look, to how to tell if something is actually discounted without spending all day scouring the online shelves. No matter your budget, this is a list of tips that will help you get the most bang for your buck.

Prime Day deals badge with gaming laptops either side on a green background

(Image credit: Future)

Wait for big sales events

It might not exactly fit into your schedule depending on when you read this, but waiting for the next big online sales event is probably your best bet to get even the best gaming laptops for a truly excellent price. According to the Adobe shopping report, for example, computers, laptops, and gaming technology are typically at their cheapest for the weeks surrounding Black Friday (which falls in November). This is, without a doubt, the definitive time to grab your gaming gear. Although sales and occasional bargains can be found throughout the year, sales events like Black Friday offer the biggest price cuts and usually hold the best stock levels. 

In the Summer months, keep an eye out for Prime Day laptop deals.

Do your homework (get the right specs for you) 

Like buying any bit of gaming tech, doing your laptop homework will help you out a lot. A big way to narrow down prices is to think about what you’ll use a gaming laptop for. Do you need something just for gaming? Do you need something for content creation too? Picking the right specs for what you’ll need will help to narrow your search for a great gaming laptop deal, so it's worth thinking about. 

This will also help you to stop overspending. Knowing the top-of-the-line components that will make up the cream of the laptop crop will be useful yardsticks for measuring prices. For example, the 13th Gen Intel Core processors (HX Series) are probably some of the best CPUs for gaming thanks to their DDR5 support, up to 16 cores, and advanced PCIe Gen 5 connections. Meanwhile, the RTX 4090 is the beefiest graphics card you can get, with other 40 series laptop GPUs being top picks too.

Use price-comparison software 

I’m sorry to say it, but online retailers aren’t always honest with you. Without pointing any fingers, the world’s largest online retailer is a good example. A lot of the time, it will say something is discounted by x% or make it seem like buying right this second is a good idea, when in reality, it’s using some smoke and mirrors behind the scenes to make that “deal price” seem better than it is. 

Enter price comparison software like Camel Camel Camel, which gives you price analytics for every single product listed on Amazon’s wares. It’ll show you price graphs charted by dates, and you’ll be able to see if a gaming laptop you’re buying is actually at its cheapest ever price, or if its current bargain cost is actually last month’s average. There’s other software like this out there - Honey is a good one to make sure you’re not missing out on voucher codes, for example. But even if you aren’t shopping on Amazon, Camel x3 lets you compare price data to similar products listed there, so it’s a useful trick to have up your sleeve.

MSI GF63 gaming laptop on orange background with deal badge

(Image credit: Future)

Look for the tried and tested retailers 

Of course, there are more benevolent online sources out there. Some retailers are particularly deals-prone or are known for having cheaper prices wherever possible. These special retailers are ones like Best Buy, Newegg, and Walmart in the US. In the UK, you’re looking at Laptops Direct, Box, and Currys. Of course, there are websites like HotUKDeals which collate the best deals, although these aren’t always well-maintained. Don't forget, we collate our very own list of the best cheap gaming laptops that's maintained each and every week by our deals editor.

More than that, there are other websites like Newegg that are known to offer lots of freebies and incentives when buying - these are good to look out for too. Finally, Newegg and Amazon are actually third-party sellers, which means they typically have greater stock levels than the rest.

Don’t fear the refurbished aisle 

If you’re really set on getting a powerful gaming laptop for as cheap as chips, the final tip we can offer is to not fear the refurbished section. It might not seem as appealing - if you’re going to spend that much money on a gaming laptop surely you want that “brand new” unboxing experience - but don’t forget that for an open-box laptop to be resold it usually has to go through scrupulous renewing processes first. 

Also, there are plenty of folks out there who can somehow afford to replace a laptop as frequently as you would a phone since new models and components come out fairly often. This is like someone buying a new car from a showroom, putting about 5000 miles on the clock, and selling it back to the dealer for an even newer model. Refurbished gaming laptops from the likes of Alienware, Dell, Lenovo, and so on probably aren’t that old, and they’re all excellent value. If you have your heart set on that aforementioned 13th Gen Intel Core processors (HX Series) and an RTX 40 series GPU, a refurbished laptop might be your most affordable route to them.

Looking for more gaming laptops on the cheap? Take a look at the best cheap Alienware laptops, the best RTX 3070 laptop deals, and the best RTX 3080 laptop deals.

Duncan Robertson
Hardware Editor

Ever since playing Journey at the age of 15, I’ve been desperate to cover video games for a living. After graduating from Edinburgh Napier University with a degree in Journalism, I contributed to the Scottish Games Network and completed an Editorial Internship over at Expert Reviews. Besides that, I’ve been managing my own YouTube channel and Podcast for the last 7 years. It’s been a long road, but all that experience somehow landed me a dream job covering gaming hardware. I’m a self-confessing PlayStation fanboy, but my experience covering the larger business and developer side of the whole industry has given me a strong knowledge of all platforms. When I’m not testing out every peripheral I can get my hands on, I’m probably either playing tennis or dissecting game design for an upcoming video essay. Now, I better stop myself here before I get talking about my favourite games like HUNT: Showdown, Dishonored, and Towerfall Ascension. Location: UK Remote