If you've decided the fair is the place to be, and are raring to go – here’s some tips to make the most of your trip.
If you’ve been looking to replace your gadget or tech accessories; you’re probably thinking of heading down to the PIKOM PC Fair 2014. But before you do, our scouts went through the fair to find out just what’s in store for you at the KLCC Convention Centre this weekend.
The first thing our SaveMoney scouts at the fair noticed was the neat layout of the halls. Expect more of a crowd on weekends but when not so crowded; the halls are pleasant to walk through. The main laptop companies like Asus, Lenovo, Dell and HP are the first companies to greet you as you get through the entrance. After these come the printer companies peppered amongst them; phone brands, cameras, gaming accessories and at the last few booths belong to computer shops selling various PC odd and ends.
If you know exactly what you want, a floorplan is available at the entrance right next to a huge board of QR Codes which you can scan to redeem discounts at the fair.
Be ready to walk quite a bit as the halls are arranged in such a way that you have to go through all 5 of them instead of picking and choosing. There is only one entrance and one exit.
If you are really looking for some new tech gear; it is really convenient to have everything in one place but do expect not just PC Fair crowds but the general weekend KLCC crowd too.
So what are the deals like?
The minute we stepped into the fair, we could almost sense the feeling of our wallets emptying. From cute earphones to gorgeous, high resolution monitors; we found we ‘could use’ a LOT of the things at the fair. It didn’t help that right at the end of the fair, credit card companies had sprung booths shoving cards in your face. However, it is this hype and ‘energy’ at the fair that booth operators count on. Many people, too dazzled by the array, may not notice that the items aren’t really that cheap. We actually found that a majority of the items on sale were going for the average retail price. Some promoters lured you with the prospect of free gifts such as shopping vouchers and accessories but prices weren’t that much cheaper from heading to Low Yat or Digital Mall.
So what kind of deals can you expect?
Discounts of RM10- RM150 from Recommended Retail Prices on selected products and models.
Free gifts such as shopping vouchers and accessories.
Is this worth your time? Well, any amount saved is something. But you could contrast this with the effort it may take you to get to the Fair. If you are looking to revamp your entire tech world then the savings could add up but buying just one item at an RM20 discount may seem a little disingenuous.
However, the team did only have a limited amount of time to scout the length of the halls so there may be a really awesome deal hidden in the proverbial haystack.
If you’ve decided the fair is the place to be, and are raring to go – here’s some tips to make the most of your trip.
1. Do your research. Not all deals at the fair are worth the time. Why not before going, head to a nearby computer store or heck, check prices online. You may find a sneaky product or two are actually at retail price but sellers use the hype of the fair to promote it as a ‘deal’. You’ll be harder to con if you come equipped with the facts!
2. Ask for discounts. We found a lot of the pamphlets didn’t feature discounted prices. Salespeople want to see if you’re really interested so if you ask and are genuinely willing to buy, they may offer you a discount or a freebie. Some pamphlets did have promos but only on the first page.
3. Plan what you are going to buy. What is it that you want? A new camera, laptop or just accessories? Once you know, put your blinkers on and avoid ALL other booths. No matter how pretty the girl (yes they had tonnes of promoters in skimpy outfits); she isn’t going to pay your credit card bill! Move along, boys, move along!
4. Bring only a set amount of cash. We know payday just passed so you’re feeling flushed. But you don’t want the money to run out before you can even get to mid-month! Limit the cash and the credit. Perhaps bring one (or no) credit card unless you are sure you can deal with the temptation of a new set of sub-woofers.
5. Check out special credit card deals. If you do decide to bring a credit card along – make sure you bring the right one! Call you bank to find out if they’re offering any special deals at the fair. For instance, Maybank cardholders could redeem gifts with their TreatPoints at the fair. Of course, don’t use this as the ultimate motivator to buy another 3 cameras you don’t need.
Depending on the kind of shopper you are, the Fair may or may not seem like a deal to you but if you’re looking for a few items – these savings definitely add up. It’s also great that you have all of them available under one roof. One of our SaveMoney scouts used to scoff at PC Fair being the place that old stock and outdated gadgets usually get dumped but was presently surprised at some of the powerful laptops and devices on sale. Whether you want a simple Celeron or a 4th Gen i7 processor with a massive 12gb ram, you could find it here.
Again, discounts are NOT a hefty 20-50% but if you want a new gadget – it’s worth your while taking a look.
Diana Chai is Editor of SaveMoney.my, an online consumer advice portal which aims to help Malaysians save money through smart (and most of the time painless) savings in their daily banking, technology, and lifestyle spending habits.