AppleCare Plus price just dropped for MacBook Pro and MacBook Air — is the extra warranty worth it now?

Apple Care plus settings app on new iPhone 12 Pro Max 5G smartphone model by Apple Computers close-up of Pacific Blue mobile phone device
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If you’re thinking about buying a new MacBook, then here’s some potentially good news: Apple has dropped the price of its AppleCare Plus extended warranty service for its current MacBook Pro and MacBook Air models.

The price change affects MacBook Air with Apple’s M1 chip, the Intel-powered MacBook Air and the M1-powered 13-inch MacBook Pro. As spotted by MacRumors, the price of AppleCare Plus for the MacBook Air models has dropped  from $249 to $199. The MacBook Pro Apple Care Plus package now costs $249, down from $269. Meanwhile, AppleCare Plus for Intel-based 13-inch MacBook Pro models still sits at $269. 

It is unclear why Apple made the change, and the amount of coverage hasn’t changed alongside the price decrease. Comparable price dips have been seen in other territories, as well. 

Each AppleCare Plus plan for MacBooks extends the warranty out to three years (from one year, standard), and significantly lowers the costs for repairs due to accidental damage to your notebook. AppleCare Plus plan holders are allowed two such accidental damage incidents within 12 months, and also have access to 24/7 live tech support.

You can buy AppleCare Plus for MacBook Air and MacBook Pro alongside either laptop, or within 60 days of buying the hardware. According to MacRumors, anyone who recently bought one of those AppleCare Plus plans can reach out to Apple Support to try to cancel the existing plan and sign up at the lower price, but no details on eligibility were provided.

Given the extent of the coverage, AppleCare Plus provides a considerable safety net for users who are concerned about the longevity of their new MacBook or perhaps are accident-prone. However, even at the discounted prices, you’ll pay upwards of 20% of your new laptop’s price tag to secure the extended warranty and coverage.

People at Genius Bar inside Apple store.

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As a heavy, longtime MacBook user, I’ve never personally felt the need to pay for AppleCare Plus for a laptop. Apple’s devices are typically well-built and sturdy, and can last for several years. When widespread manufacturing problems do rear their head, as seen with keyboard issues in previous-generation models and various battery woes over the years, Apple launches a service program that provides free repairs and/or replacements — no AppleCare Plus required.

Still, for some people, peace of mind is worth paying extra for, particularly when the laptops in question start at $999 and scale up significantly based on chosen specs. Apple Care Plus can also give you round-the-clock access to technical support, which can be a great value in its own right.

These latest AppleCare price drops are pretty modest overall, but it might be enough to sway some prospective buyers.

Andrew Hayward

Andrew Hayward is a freelance writer for Tom’s Guide who contributes laptop and other hardware reviews. He’s also the Culture Editor at crypto publication Decrypt covering the world of Web3. Andrew’s writing on games and tech has been published in more than 100 publications since 2006, including Rolling Stone, Vice, Polygon, Playboy, Stuff, and GamesRadar.