It’s almost time for Apple to unveil its much anticipated iPhone SE 2/iPhone 9. The device is set to be a reaffirmation of all that people loved about the iPhone 8 and earlier models. It’s also expected to be on the lower end of the price range. But this is Apple, after all, so it will still probably cost close to $400.
But if you haven’t been saving your pennies yet, there’s still time to get some cash before Apple announces the iPhone SE 2 next month. That is, of course, by selling your currency iPhone (or Android, for you switchers out there).
Thankfully there’s a number of ways you can get rid of your old smartphone now so you have the cash to splash on the latest and greatest from Cupertino. Below we look at the four best options for you.
Best Place To Sell Your iPhone
Our #1 place to sell your iPhone if you’re in the US is Gazelle. Using Gazelle is simple, and they tend to pay above market value for your phone – especially when compared to other phone recycle retailers. I’ve used Gazelle multiple times over the years, usually ahead of a new iPhone launch, to offload an old phone or two.
New phones are expensive. If you’re going for a flagship iPhone – meaning a Pro or Pro Max model – you’re going to need around $1000 to $1300, depending on the storage model you go for, and that is A LOT of money. If you have a few new(ish) phones not being used in your home, and they’re in good condition, you can sell them to Gazelle and get a bit of money to put towards your new phone.
Trade-in Sites Including Flipsy and uSell
There are a number of trade-in sites that have sprung up in recent years catering to people who want to quickly offload their new iPhone in the most hassle-free way. Two of the best-known trade-in sites are Flipsy and uSell. However, each site operates a bit differently.
At Flipsy main selling point is that it shows you what other online sites are willing to pay for your device. If you find an offer you like, you can sell it to that site right away. Just click the Sell button on Flipsy and you’ll be taken to the buyer’s website. If you accept the offer you ship them your iPhone, they’ll check it out, then they’ll pay you for your old phone.
uSell is more direct, as they’ll offer to buy your phone outright. Just answer questions about your iPhone’s make and model, as well as its condition, and you’ll get a firm cash offer for it. You can even choose how you want to be paid: via PayPal or via a check.
If convenience isn’t that important to you, you can get a lot more selling your device through Amazon’s Seller Central. You’ll need to create a free seller account, but then you just list your iPhone for sale and confirm its condition. You set the price you want the buyer to pay. When someone buys your iPhone Amazon will send you an email. You’ll then need to package the phone yourself and take it to the post office to post it.
The main advantage of Amazon is that you can set the price. Amazon will end up taking about 10% in fees, but you still get a much better deal for your iPhone than you’d get trading it in. However there are some drawbacks: first, Amazon holds your funds for 14 days to make sure you actually deliver the iPhone to the buyer. This means if you need the cash quickly, Amazon isn’t the place to sell.
Second, Amazon’s seller policies state that the seller is responsible for being able to prove the device was actually delivered to the buyer. For that reason it’s always good to pay extra for signed and tracked delivery–if you don’t–and the buyer says he didn’t receive the phone–Amazon will side with the buyer and you’ll be out your iPhone and the cash.
eBay is the oldie but goldie. Everyone knows how eBay works: people can bid for your iPhone or you can set a buy it now price. These two methods virtually ensure you’ll get a better price for your iPhone on eBay than at a trade-in site, but there are some drawbacks too.
On eBay, you’ll need to take pictures of your phone and upload them yourself. You’ll also be competing with hundreds if not thousands of other sellers. And just as with Amazon you must package and unsure the iPhone is delivered safely. But there’s one other drawback: when eBay and PayPal fees are taken into account you’ll end up losing almost 15% of your selling price in fees.
For those that don’t want to use a middle man site, Craigslist is the way to go. On Craigslist you just create a classified ad. Unlike trade-in sites and Amazon or eBay, Craigslist doesn’t help with the financial transaction at all. You’ll place your ad, someone will respond. Hopefully that someone is honest and not a serial killer who will show up in your agreed meeting place and shimmy you in the throat with broken rebar.
I half-jest, but there are some very unscrupulous buyers and sellers on Craigslist, so it’s always best to proceed with a sale with caution. Most people won’t have problems, but just remember to agree to meet in a very public, well-lit place and only accept cash.
Apple expert and novelist, Michael Grothaus has been covering tech on KnowYourMobile for the best part of 10 years. Prior to this, he worked at Apple. And before that, he was a film journalist. Michael is a published author; his book Epiphany Jones was voted as one of the best novels about Hollywood by Entertainment Weekly. Michael is also a writer at other publications including VICE and Fast Company.