Students, teachers, lecturers and those who work for an educational institution (school, university or college) can save money on a new Mac, MacBook or iPad purchase via the Apple Education Store. In this article, we show you how to shop at the Apple Education Store and get a student discount from Apple.
Students are a big market for Apple, which is why it has a separate education store that offers hefty discounts on Mac computers and iPad tablets – and sometimes gives away products like AirPods as an incentive for customers.
Most Apple customers aren’t aware of the Apple Education Store, or don’t think the discount applies to them. But this is a mistake, because Apple throws the education net quite wide, and there’s a good chance you qualify if you are enrolled in a higher education course, or if you work in a school, college or university.
Read on and we’ll show you how you can save money on a new MacBook or iPad.
Before we begin though, you might be interested to know that between June and October each year in the northern hemisphere, and between January and March in the southern hemisphere, Apple runs a promotion for students, usually offering a free pair of AirPods with qualifying purchases from the Apple Education Store. Read about that here: How to get free AirPods in Apple’s Back to School Sale.
Another thing you need to know: in January 2022 Apple changed the US Education Discount Store to require validation from UNiDAYS before students can get a discount. There was some backlash following this move though and Apple did eventually remove the requirement, meaning that it is still possible for non-students in the US to avoid the validation step, as per this Reddit post. But Apple is likely to implement this validation step in the future. UK students already have to go via UNiDAYS (or Student Beans).
How much is the Apple student discount?
Apple doesn’t offer a single, universal discount. It sets different prices for each product range. The discounts are only currently available for iPads and Mac computers (iMac, MacBook Air, MacBook Pro and Mac mini). We’ll look in more detail at each product category below.
Unfortunately there are no discounts on the iPhone, Apple TV, Apple Watch, AirPods or HomePods, or on accessories or software for these items.
If you’re thinking of buying an iPad for college or university you also might like to read our guide to the Best iPad for students.
Who can get an Apple student discount?
There are three types of people who can qualify for a student discount:
Students in higher education.
People who are buying for education institutions.
Parents of higher education students buying on their behalf.
Apple spells this out in more detail in its terms and conditions.
For the US these state that the following groups are “eligible to purchase from the Apple Store for Education”:
K-12staff – Any employee of a public or private K-12 institution in the United States is eligible, including homeschool teachers (this doesn’t include people educating their children during lockdowns, unfortunately). In addition, school board members who are currently serving as elected or appointed members are eligible. PTA or PTO executives currently serving as elected or appointed officers are eligible.
Higher Education staff and students – Faculty and staff of Higher Education institutions in the United States; and students attending, or accepted into a Higher Education institution in the United States are eligible to purchase. Purchases from the Apple Store for Education Individuals are not for institutional purchase or resale.
Higher Education Parents – Parents purchasing on behalf of their child, who is a student currently attending or accepted into a public or private Higher Education Institution in the United States, are eligible to purchase.
Apple has a similar set of terms and conditions for eligibility in the UK:
Employees of any education institution – Any employee of a public or private education institution in the UK.
Post-secondary Education Students – Students attending or accepted into a post-secondary education institution in the UK.
Parents of post-secondary students – Parents purchasing on behalf of their child, who is a student currently attending or accepted into a public or private post-secondary education institution in the UK.
On that basis, if you’re attending higher education, or have been accepted into a higher education/post-secondary institution, you qualify for an Apple discount. (In the UK post-secondary means university, or any other formal education that takes place after secondary education is complete. This therefore excludes sixth-form colleges, although it may be worth inquiring at an Apple Store to see if the company is prepared to relax the rules.)
Parents of students do not qualify when buying for themselves, but they can pick up a discounted Mac for their son or daughter from the education store. Again, this is limited to parents of post-secondary/higher education students.
In addition, anybody who works in an education environment qualifies for a discount on certain Apple products. It’s not just limited to teachers and lecturers, but also covers administrative workers and other staff members. Essentially it’s anybody who works at or for a school, college or university. (This is not limited to post-secondary institutions. Apple refers to “any education institution”.)
This does mean that you can’t get a discount for a Mac or iPad for your child who is currently at school, although the school could make the purchase and provide the equipment for students.
If you don’t qualify for an Apple Education Store discount, we’d recommend instead checking out the Apple Refurbished Store, which offers discounts for everyone. You could also check our our round ups of the latest and best Apple deals we find at various Apple resellers.
Accessories: Two (2) accessories with Education Pricing may be purchased per year
How to get an Apple student discount
Having established that you qualify for an education discount how can you get money off at Apple?
You may think that all you need to do is visit the Apple Store for Education and you will find the products you want at a lower price. However, before you can access Apple’s Education Store you will need to verify that you are a student or that you qualify in another way (e.g. you work in a school or college). Different countries will have a different sequence of steps to go through, which we will run through below.
If you are a student in the US it is quite easy to get an Education discount at the US Apple Store, in fact a loophole may mean it is possible to get one without any proof that you are a student, although we expect that Apple will rectify that. If you are a student you should follow these steps:
Choose the Mac of iPad you want and click on your selection.
Once you have customised your Apple product, click Continue.
Enter your delivery details and check out.
Beware that Apple can request to see evidence that you are a student at any point during or after the purchase and will charge an additional fee if you fail to provide it.
If you have any problems, we recommend you get your student status verified with UNiDAYS or log on from your university network. Make sure you have quick access to some form of official identification that proves you qualify for the education discount. Your student ID is a good choice.
Once there you’ll be encouraged to sign up on student discount website UNiDAYS to access Apple’s educational discounts. Alternatively, UK customers can also use the rival verification service Student Beans, which works in the same way as UNiDAYS.
On whichever site you use, you’ll need to provide your email address and a password, your name, institution, subject of study, years of study and course length.
Once you have completed the registration process and signed in you will be able to access Apple’s student discounts.
If you don’t want to register via a verification site, you can also call Apple, use Apple’s Chat online feature, or visit an Apple Store. The staff there will guide you through the process.
It’s usually best to log on from your university network if you can.
You will also want to make sure you have quick access to some form of official identification that proves you qualify for the education discount. Your student ID is a good choice.
However, you may find you don’t actually require any sort of login or ID to order from the Apple Education Store – but beware that Apple can request to see evidence that you are a student at any point during or after the purchase and will charge an additional fee if you fail to provide it.
How to buy Apple products for an education institution
If you have been tasked with buying new Macs or iPads for a school, college or university then Apple has a different store for you. This store is designed for those who are buying a Mac for an educational institution (for students to work on rather than for individual students to own).
You’ll need to search for your Educational Institution: enter your institution’s details and click on search.
If your institution is found you will be able to sign in to access your institution’s store.
You may still need to register before you can use the store.
If your school, college or other institution isn’t found then you may need to call Apple to discuss registering your school.
How to get a student discount for Apple Music and Apple TV+
Apple’s student membership scheme for Apple Music offers those in full-time education a 50% subscription discount and this deal is better than ever right now because the Student Apple Music deal also includes includes Apple TV+ for a limited time (normally $4.99/£4.99 per month). If you are a student here’s how to get Apple Music for half price.
There’s currently three months free for new subscribers to Apple Music, so you might want to take that up first. Get three months free here.
The student discount brings the monthly cost of Apple Music membership down from $9.99/£9.99 to $4.99/£4.99, with identical schemes in Ireland, the US, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and Denmark, each offering half off the usual price. And with Apple TV+ bundled in for free it’s a great deal!
To qualify for the student discount, you’ll need to prove that you’re enrolled at an eligible university or college.
The Student Membership tier is the third membership tier Apple has offered to consumers, alongside Individual Membership ($9.99/£9.99 per month) and Family Membership ($14.99/£14.99). Visit Apple’s site for more details and to sign up.
If you’re a student and signing up for Apple Music on your iPhone or iPad, tap where it says ‘Are you a University Student?’ and you’ll be directed to a verification system – if your college or university is eligible you’ll get the reduced subscription rate. Read our guide to Apple Music.
And that’s it – enjoy your discounted Apple products!