Who needs Prime Day? These items are a steal all year long.
Rick BroidaSenior Editor
Rick Broida is the author of numerous books and thousands of reviews, features and blog posts. He writes CNET's popular Cheapskate blog and co-hosts Protocol 1: A Travelers Podcast (about the TV show Travelers). He lives in Michigan, where he previously owned two escape rooms (chronicled in the ebook "I Was a Middle-Aged Zombie").
Thus, it seemed a good time to update this post, which is all about perennial deals -- items I consider a bargain every day, no coupon code or massive sale required. Some of these will be familiar to regular readers, but they bear repeating because, well, they're excellent products at unbeatable prices.
The best cheap drone
Most entry-level drones don't leave much to the imagination. You fly them around for a bit and, yeah, OK, fun -- but then what? That's why I love this recent model from Eachine: It's not only a flying machine, it's a flying army guy.
The photo really tells the whole story: The E019 has a Green Beret-looking paraglider dude, which is already super cool. But he can also ride on top of the drone, skateboard-style. Either way, you can have him swoop in from above just when it looks like your guys are about to get overrun by aliens, zombies, robots or whatever.
I grabbed one of these a couple months ago; it's a blast and super-easy to fly. Just make sure you follow the instructions regarding charging the battery, which you do have to take out of the drone. That blip aside, I can't imagine any kid (or parent) who wouldn't have fun with this.
How often has your phone slipped out of your hand and hit the pavement? If the answer is any more than zero times, you need the Phone Loop(formerly Ninja Loop, a much better name if you ask me). Yeah, yeah: I like this product so much, I should marry it.
Unlike pretty much every other phone-grip accessory, this one adds no weight, bulk or thickness. Your phone can still sit flat when you lay it down, still charge on a wireless charger and even still work with a magnetic car mount.
That's because it's a simple strap that loops around the back of your case, allowing you to slide a few fingers in for much easier and more comfortable phone-gripping. I've gifted a bunch of these; people absolutely love them. And so do I.
The Phone Loop is available in a variety of colors and styles and costs just $5. Buy three and you can bag free shipping.
The best cheap password manager
You must use a password manager. You must. Don't believe me? Maybe you'll listen to this guy:
Watch this: This free password manager offers one crucial feature
Wyze Cam Pan
sounds way too good to be true; most people I show it to are stunned when I reveal the price: Just $29.99. (Shipping adds $7.99, or you can just get it for $37.98 shipped from Amazon.)
The Pan is a Wi-Fi camera designed for home security and monitoring. It streams (and, as needed, records) live HD video, supports two-way audio, detects motion, works at night and, true to its name, pans up, down and all around. A recent update adds person-detection to the mix of features, a benefit usually seen only in much pricier cameras.