Shopping for a new laptop can be stressful — especially when you have tuition fees, schooling costs and inflation on your mind.
Laptops are considered a course pre-requisite for millions of students across Canada, starting as young as elementary school.
No matter your age or education level, for many shoppers, finding the right computer comes down to one thing: the price. With this in mind, we searched the internet to find the best laptop deals for students in 2023, starting at less than $200.
From Amazon to Best Buy Canada, Chromebooks to Macbooks, PCs and everything in between, these are the 18 best affordable laptops for elementary, high school and university students in 2023, according to ratings and reviewers.
18 best laptops for elementary, high school & university students in 2023
Best laptops under $500
An affordable favourite on Best Buy Canada, reviewers call the Lenovo IdeaPad an "amazing Chromebook at a great price." According to one shopper, the Chromebook is "very easy to set up," has an "impressive" response time and "easy to use" features.
This budget-friendly refurbished laptop is fully functional and in excellent condition. Plus, it comes backed by a 90-day supplier warranty for extra peace of mind. The Acer Aspire 1 has a 15.6-inch screen, a Windows 10 operating system and 4 GB of RAM.
With an average rating of 4.3 stars, Amazon shoppers describe the 14-inch ASUS Chromebook as a "great value" laptop. It's a "great little Chromebook," according to one reviewer. The "battery life is impressive."
This affordable pre-owned 14-inch laptop boasts Intel 8th Gen Quad-Core i5-8250U, 16GB DDR4 RAM and Windows 10 Pro. With dozens of five-star reviews singing its praises, Amazon shoppers say it offers the "best bang for [your] buck" and promise you "wouldn't be able to tell the difference" between this refurbished laptop and a brand new model.
This HP Chromebook runs on an Intel Celeron processor with 8GB RAM, easily handling work, study and entertainment. It offers FHD visuals on its 15.6-inch anti-glare display and thanks to HP Fast Charge, the laptop can be charged from 0% to 50% in around 45 minutes. It's "freaking amazing," writes one shopper. "The whole computer feels expensive and the screen quality is something you'd see in a very high-end laptop."
This seriously affordable Acer Spin 1 laptop features Intel Celeron N4100, 4GB RAM, 64GB eMMC, and Windows 10. The refurbished computer has a 4.3-star average rating, and reviews call it a "great little machine."
Best laptops under $700
A crowd-favourite among Amazon shoppers, this 15.6-inch Acer Aspire 5 Slim Laptop has earned an impressive average rating of 4.3 stars based on more than 34,000 reviews. The device boasts an AMD Ryzen 3 3200U Dual-Core Processor, 4GB DDR4 Memory and 128GB NVMe SSD.
This fan-favourite laptop has everything you need for work, school, and play. With a 4.4-star rating from over 1,200 reviews, Amazon reviewers call the device an "excellent laptop" and say it's "great" for students.
The ASUS Cloud Gaming 2-in-1 Flip Chromebook has a 15.6-inch Full HD 144 Hz Touch Display, Intel Core i3 Processor, 128GB SSD, 8GB RAM, and more. Amazon reviewers say it's a "great Chromebook" that works "very well" as a laptop or a tablet.
Be productive anytime, anywhere with the Microsoft Surface Go 3 128GB Windows 11 S tablet. This 2-in-1 tablet has a 10.5" PixelSense touchscreen display, Windows 11 technology, is optimized for digital pen and touch, and features tablet-to-laptop versatility.
Best laptops under $1,500
The reviewer-loved Acer Aspire 3 is powered by an AMD Ryzen 5 CPU and 16GB of RAM in a lightweight package. It includes 512GB of NVMe solid state storage and has earned a 90 per cent average reviewer recommendation. It's a "very solid option for anyone looking for an easy-to-use laptop for school," writes one shopper.
Work from anywhere with ease with this best-selling ASUS VivoBook laptop. Weighing in at 3.5 pounds, the device has the latest Intel Core i3 processor and features fast-charge technology. It's a "great laptop," writes one shopper; "I should have bought it sooner!"
This versatile laptop is the perfect meeting place between productivity and entertainment. The device features an Intel Core i7 processor with 16GB RAM, a 16-inch touchscreen display with 1920 x 1200 native resolution, and a 512GB solid state drive.
With an encouraging average rating of 4.6 stars, this sleek Microsoft Surface Laptop boasts a powerful 11th-generation Intel processor with a 2.4GHz processor speed. It's "surprisingly quiet, responsive and compact," according to one reviewer. It "surpassed my expectations," they add.
This 2020 Apple MacBook Air has racked up more than 18,000 reviews from Amazon Canada shoppers. The device, which offers up to 18 hours of battery life and 8GB of unified memory, has been called "really fast and reliable" by reviewers.
The 17.3-inch Lenovo laptop has earned near-perfect reviews from Best Buy Canada shoppers, with an average rating of 4.7 stars out of more than 160 reviews. Reviewers say the versatile computer "does everything you want."
This 2-in-1 laptop is built with an Intel Core i5-1235U processor, 16GB RAM and 512GB SSD. Its convertible design has a 360-degree hinge, allowing a smooth transition between the tablet and laptop mode.
Stay on-the-ball and entertained from anywhere with this Acer Nitro 15.6-inch gaming laptop. Featuring an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 graphics card and 8GB of RAM, the top-rated computer has earned more than 2,400 five-star reviews from shoppers.