Friday, February 27, 2009

Dell Trade-In Program, Get Gift Cards For Your Old Electronics

Do you have leftover electronics from the past holiday season. Maybe you bought a new PS3 and now you aren't sure what to do with at old PS2. Perhaps, like me, you've got 2 or 3 cell phones lying around that you don't need anymore. If you plan on shopping at Dell you might want to checkout the Dell Exchange Trade-In Program.

The program which initially launched back in November of 2008 is similar to E-Recycling programs like those at Best Buy, EcoNew or Costco where users trade in their unwanted PCs, mobile phones, digital cameras and MP3 players into Dell Gift Cards. Once you've found the trade-in value of your item they'll provide you with a free printable prepaid shipping label. You'll then pack up your item, ship it off and they'll inspect it for final trade-in value.

As you can see the process is pretty simple and fairly straight forward, visit the Dell Trade-In site and follow the five quick steps and you'll be on your way.
  • Step 1 -- Select an item category, input the required information and receive an instant trade-in estimate.
  • Step 2 -- Accept the quote, register for a trade-in account and agree to the Dell Exchange program terms and conditions.
  • Step 3 -- Print a prepaid shipping label and ship your items to our trade-in warehouse.
  • Step 4 -- The receipt of your traded item(s) will be confirmed via email. Once inspected, you will receive a subsequent email confirming the trade-in value.
  • Step 5 -- Receive a Dell Gift Card by mail about 2 to 3 weeks after the item is received and is accepted at the trade-in center.

I ran a few items through the system to see what they values would be. I started with my Polaroid i733 digital camera. The original price I paid was about $15 after a fairly slickdeal. For digital cameras you select your manufacturer from the drop down list, select the amount of mega-pixels and then you are given a few other options to checkoff.

The final value after checking off the included accessories ended up being $18 which was a little less than I thought it would be but it was still a fairly reasonable trade-in price. Obviously I could hassle with eBay or Craigslist and probably get a little more from the deal, in fact the average eBay price would be about twice that. But then you have the extra hassles of creating the listing, dealing with a buyer and paying extra fees.

The site is powered by EzTradeIn which was developed by Dealtree, the same company that runs the trade-in programs for Best Buy, Tiger Direct and Gateway. They have a pretty strong reputation so there isn't much concern over not being paid. Just make sure you read all the terms and conditions carefully.

If Dell gift cards aren't your thing then you might check the EzTradeIn site for another offer that fits your needs. They have several other programs.


  1. This is a joke. This page only shows a camera, and I can't get to a Dell site that gives estimates on laptops. All I get is a Best Buy site that calculates NO trade in value for a less than three year old Vostro 1710 still under Pro Support with a 1.8Ghz Core 2 Duo CPU, 3.5GB RAM and a 320GB HDD. What kind of help is that. I paid close to $1,000 for it and even with FIVE year straight line depreciation it would still have a book value of approximately $400.

  2. It looks like dell has discontinued their program, at least I no longer see it listed anywhere on their site.

    As to your three year old computer. The deprecation value of consumer electronics isn't a straight line. Sadly once newer faster cheaper tech takes hold the value of older items drops significantly. Its hard to expect to get 1/3 of the value from these companies when you can buy a brand new system what is faster and better equipped.

    In this case your best option is to sell it yourself. I wouldn't hold onto the expectation of getting $400. But you'll likely get much more than you could from any of the trade-in sites.


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