From the Cheapskate: In your face, Black Friday! That's a post-cashback price, but you'll get your rebate faster than usual. Plus: the best deal ever on a soundbar alternative.
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Far as I'm concerned, there's no better gift to give -- or get -- this year than the Amazon Echo Dot. It's an amazing little smart-home appliance, perfect for everything from piping out tunes to riding shotgun on your nightstand. And at $49.99, it's pretty affordable.
But at $29.99? I'd call it a steal.
Before I take you there, let me explain the two key conditions. First, you have to use a cashback service called TopCashback -- and be a new member of that service. Second, you have to pay the regular price up front, then wait a few weeks to cash out your $20 rebate.
Update (12/12/2016): Now that Bed Bath and Beyond is selling the Echo Dot for $39.99, the TopCashback deal is not applicable.
Update (12/19/2016): Although your account will show an eight-week payout estimate, I've been assured by TopCashback your $20 will, in fact, be payable within 21 days as promised. Exact words: "Please feel free to reassure your readers that they can disregard that timespan and the $20 will become payable within 21 days."
Still with me? Good, because those are hardly dealbreakers in my book. I've run deals like this before with TopCashback, and save for the rare hiccup, they've worked out extremely well for buyers. (Also, you can and should keep piling up rebates on other things you buy. This shouldn't be a one-shot thing; cashback services like this one are seriously awesome.)
So, here's the procedure. Please read it through before getting started...
Behind the scenes, the service will track your purchase -- though you won't see any notice of it in your account for up to seven days. (Don't panic; that's just how it works.) Once it's posted, you'll be able to "cash out" that $20 rebate (via any number of methods) within 21 days.
All this might sound like a lot of hoop-jumping, but it's really not. And, hey, what's a few hoops anyway when it means getting a Dot for $30? Even Black Friday and Cyber Monday couldn't beat that!
Bonus deal: Face it: Your TV's weak, down-facing speakers aren't getting the job done. The most common fix is a sound bar , but those get a little pricey, and then there's the extra wiring, remote, etc. Thankfully, there's a great deal to be head on a low-tech fix: You can get a pair of Soundscoopz for $14.95 -- plus $6.95 for shipping -- when you apply coupon code rb at checkout. Previously these were $34.95.
So help me, I still think this is an ingenious product. Ever notice how cupping your hand next to your phone or tablet speaker makes it sound better? These curved "scoopz" do the same thing for your TV, bouncing the sound directly toward you so it's louder and clearer. I've tried them, they work, they're genius. Great gift, in my humble opinion.