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Best Buy offers trade-in deal for free iPhone 5

Customers who swap their existing smartphone for an iPhone 5 with the usual two-year contract will get a minimum credit of $100. But the deal is short-lived. It ends Monday.

Screenshot by Lance Whitney/CNET

Best Buy customers can score a free 16GB iPhone 5 by trading in their current smartphone.

Starting today and ending Monday, the deal offers a minimum of $100 for any working smartphone. Best Buy is selling the 16GB iPhone 5 for $99.99, making the phone free after the trade-in deal -- or close to free.

Buyers will still need to pony up the sales tax on the iPhone 5, as well as any carrier activation fees. The offer is good for AT&T, Sprint, and Verizon subscribers eligible for an upgrade and requires the standard two-year agreement.

The in-store-only deal is available at the 1,400 Best Buy and Best Buy Mobile stores across the US that offer trade-ins. The phone you trade in must be able to turn on and have no water damage or cracks in the screen.

The actual trade-in value depends on the model phone and its condition. If your phone is worth more than $100, you'll get the difference in the form of a Best Buy gift card. Curious consumers can determine the worth of their phone through Best Buy's online trade-in page.

Best Buy is, of course, also selling Apple's new lineup. The iPhone 5C is available today for preorder, as is a free 8GB iPhone 4S. The 5C, 5S, and 4S will reach Best Buy store shelves starting Friday, September 20, for AT&T, Sprint, and Verizon customers.