Amazon Prime Day: 5 Deals to Buy and 5 to Avoid

The best Amazon Prime Day deals are easy to spot and easy to buy. There are a few gotchas to watch out for, but mostly this is real money saved. Amazon makes it easy, easy, easy to sift the wheat from the chaff and find real savings on Prime Day, 7/12/16. We’ve got some tips below to shop smart and a couple tables of the best deals and the turkeys to avoid. Our top pick is the Amazon Prime Echo, a really fantastic device, normally $180, now just $130.

If You Teach Someone to Fish…

By all means check out our lists of the best and worst Amazon Prime Day deals below. That said, it’s really easy to find good deals on Prime Day. Just google “Amazon Prime Day,” then click the top link to go straight to Amazon’s Prime Day page. There, you’ll see the top deals in a scroll bar, plus the top deals on Amazon products like Echo, Kindle and Fire. Amazon shows the regular price crossed out and the sale price, so shoppers can see exactly how much they’ll save. The five star rating bar shows whether other customers like each product. A high number of reviews (shown to the right of the stars) means the star rating is more trustworthy. For instance, Amazon Echo in the picture below. The regular price of $179.99 is crossed out and the sale price of $129.99 is shown above it. The device gets a 4.5 star rating from over 38,000 satisfied customers. That’s a great deal.

Amazon Prime Day Echo Deal

Shoppers looking for a specific item can just type its name into the search box at the top of the Prime Day page and hit enter. The Prime Day deals will come up. Just look to see the crossed-out price vs the regular price and whether it’s a high-rated product or not. As an example, we typed in “laptop” and and Apple MacBook came up, normally $1,599, now $1,549. One tip: If you’re looking for the best deals and you want to be sure it’s not just a regular price “in deal’s clothing,” use the CamelCamelCamel Amazon price tool to see what the item’s price is normally.

Amazon Prime Day Deals on Apple

5 Best Amazon Prime Day Deals

Our top five best Amazon Prime Day deals are in the table below. We really, really, really like the Amazon Echo. We were lucky enough to have CapitalOne Bank send us one as a promotional item a couple of weeks ago and we’re hooked. Even at the full price of $180 it’s a bargain. When we describe it to friends they say, “Oh so it’s kind of like Siri,” but it’s a lot better than that. It’s Siri in your home, plus great audio fidelity, ready to answer your questions, read the news or weather, play music, add items to a shopping list, explain things, set alarms and do math. It’ll even try to cheer you up if you’re feeling blue. The convenience and delight of Amazon Echo can’t be overstated, and at $130 on Prime Day this deal is a no-brainer.

5 Best Amazon Prime Day Deals
DealRegular PriceAmazon Prime Day PriceWhy It's a Great Deal
Amazon Echo$179.99$129.99$50 off an amazing and incredibly useful device. Amazon Echo is like Siri, a robot butler, Jarvis, the computer from the USS Enterprise and a really awesome sound system all rolled into one. Snap up this Amazon Prime Day deal fast!
iRobot Roomba 614 Vacuum Cleaning Robot$379.99$249.99Shoppers looking for an iRobot Roomba should clean up on this 34% off Amazon Prime Day deal.
Instant Pot 7-in-1 Multi-Functional Pressure Cooker, 6Qt/1000W$119.95$69.99If you're old enough to remember the pressure cooker craze of the 1970's you remember lids blowing off and putting dents in the ceiling. These are failsafe and can cook dry beans in 45 minutes. Healthiest of the Amazon Prime Day deals!
Xbox One 500GB Console + $50 Amazon Gift Card +++$475.00$279.00A HUGE gaming bundle plus a gift card makes this the most playful of the Amazon Prime Day deals!
Bose SoundTrue Around-Ear Headphones$179.95$99.95Excellent headphones for 44% off. Sounds like one of the best Amazon Prime Day deals.

Other deals we love are the Roomba (a bit pricey but no more vacuuming!) and the Instant Pot pressure cooker. 42% off the pressure cooker makes it one of our best Amazon Prime day deals because pressure cookers are a great idea that ran into one insurmountable problem: human error. Back in the 1970’s everybody had a pressure cooker because they’re very healthy and they save a lot of money. Instead of overpaying for less-healthy canned beans and other items, why not save time and money by turning inexpensive dry beans and veggies into a quick one-pot meal in just 45 minutes? No more days of soaking are required. The reason is that everybody eventually forgets to turn off the heat and the pressure cooker blows the lid into the ceiling like a North Korean military test. No more of that with the Instant Pot, which has a failsafe that takes the human error out of it. Another of the best Amazon Prime Day deals going is a truly stellar savings on an Xbox One, complete with a $50 Amazon gift card, Halo 5 Guardians, a Dusk Shadow Wireless controller and Forza Horizon 2. That’s a bundle that would cost $475 to an ordinary mortal, but on Prime day it costs just $279.

Related: 18 Big Ways to Save Money at Amazon

5 Worst Amazon Prime Day Deals

Amazon Prime Day Best DealsTruth to tell, we had to dig pretty hard to find some Amazon Prime Day deals we didn’t like. We eventually came up with five, but only by really stretching it. The only major deal we really didn’t like was for the Amazon Fire Tablet. We checked the price history for that item on CamelCamelCamel and it hadn’t changed at all from its usual cost. Another of the major deals we didn’t like was on the Samsung large screen TV on the main deals page. Samsung makes fantastic TVs but look at the star rating. Three stars is not what we’ve come to expect from the world’s top electronics company. Most probably this is a whoops-we-botched-that-one Samsung model that they’re trying to unload because nobody will buy it. Some reviewers on Amazon’s site even claimed the sale price wasn’t a sale at all, though a quick check on CamelCamelCamel did highlight a pretty significant savings on Amazon Prime Day. The other three deals we didn’t like were pretty minor, for accessories of Apple Watch, Apple iPhone and Samsung Galaxy items and accessories with relatively low ratings. The worst of these was the Samsung Galaxy TabPro S 12″ Tablet, which isn’t Samsung’s highest rated tablet.

5 Worst Amazon Prime Day Deals
DealRegular PriceAmazon Prime Day PriceWhy It's a Bad Deal
Amazon Fire Tablet$33.33-$68.33$33.33-$68.33Same price as usual, so while it's a great Amazon product, it's not really a deal.
Samsung UN55KU6600 Curved 55-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart LED TV$1,247.99$649.99Samsung makes great TVs, but according to the 3 star customer review, this isn't one of them.
Apple Watch Screen Protector, Spigen$14.99$12.99Only a three star review.
iPhone 6S Lumee Illuminated Cell Phone Case$59.95$33.99Only a 3.5 star review on this Amazon Prime day deal. There are better iPhone cases for sale today.
Samsung Galaxy TabPro S 12" Tablet$899.99$769.99Not Samsung's highest rated tabled. 3.5 stars.

Related: Cheapest Watches for Sale on Amazon

Deals You Won’t See on Amazon Prime Day

Anyone looking for Amazon Prime Day deals on iPhone, iPhone 6s, iPad, Samsung smartphones and Oled TVs isn’t likely to find them. We did a pretty thorough search for these items on the Prime Day page and came up empty handed. Generally speaking, Prime Day isn’t for those items yet and anyone looking to save big on 7/12/16 should stick to the deals and strategies above.

If you liked this article, check out our post on 18 ways to save big money at Amazon or this one about selling on Amazon vs eBay.