Despite Inflation, These 24 Items Actually Cost Less Today

Inflation is really testing our budgets lately, but it’s not all bad news. Even though prices are going up overall, some surprising things are actually getting cheaper.

With the annual inflation rate for the United States being 3.5% from March 2023 to 2024, you are probably looking for a way to save as much as you can.

If you adjust your spending a little, you can take advantage of these 24 items that cost less today.

1. Smartphones

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Thanks to two-factor authentication and everything being an app, everyone needs a smartphone these days. And with costs being 9% less than they were a year ago, they are becoming more affordable. Pair it with an affordable data plan, and you can afford to stay connected.

2. Car and Truck Rentals

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If you need to rent a car or truck, now is a great time to do so. With 8.8% lower costs, you can take that road trip or move your belongings without spending as much. Spend that money on nice accommodations or sightseeing instead.

3. Moving Costs

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If relocating is in your near future, you won’t be paying quite as much as you would have a few months ago–which is good, as moving is expensive! Although the overall cost of moving is only 0.5% less, you can save quite a bit if you rent a truck yourself.

4. Toys

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Kids – and kids at heart – can get a little spoiled, as the price of toys has decreased by 8.2%. Now is a great time to treat yourself or a loved one or get a head start on gift-giving.

5. Airline Fare

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This spring, travelers paid 7.1% less on airline fares. So, if you are traveling on a budget, take advantage of this lower price before the summer rush increases. There’s no need to pay extra.

6. Televisions

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TVs are getting bigger, but the cost of buying one is getting lower. A quality 40” TV costs under $150, and 65” TVs start at about $650. (Fun fact: the cost of televisions is 99.32% lower in 2024 than it was in 1950!)

7. Coffee

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Fret not, coffee lovers. The price of coffee has gone down by 2.2%. So yes, it’s still cheaper to make coffee at home, but that cappuccino or iced latte you pick up at lunch isn’t going to destroy your finances. Enjoy it!

8. College Textbooks

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Textbooks cost students about $1,240 per year. Even with a decrease of 4.8% in price, they’re still a hefty investment–especially when coupled with high tuition fees and the inevitable student loan payments. Anywhere students can save money will add up and reduce the amount of debt they have to pay back.

9. Used Cars and Trucks

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Those in the market for a used vehicle are in luck, as the average price of buying a used car or truck is down 2.2%. Those looking to sell their used cars might need to brush up on their negotiation skills to get the best price, but buyers may be able to snag a deal.

10. Dairy Products

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If you typically buy a lot of dairy, your grocery bill may be down slightly. Now could be a great time to stock up on non-perishables or try some new recipes!  With some savings, you can experiment with ingredients and dishes you’ve been curious about without worrying too much about the cost.

11. Women’s and Boy’s Clothes

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Interestingly, when it comes to fashion, women’s and boy’s clothing has slightly gone down in price, at about 1% each. However, girl’s and men’s clothing has slightly gone up.

My advice? Don’t worry about what section your clothes come from. If they fit, look great, and are the right price, no one will know if they’re meant for the playground or the office.

12. New Vehicles

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Buying a new car will cost you slightly less than it did last year, but don’t expect huge savings. Even if you can save a few hundred dollars, a big purchase like a new car requires you to budget and shop around for the best deal.

13. Apples

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Apples are good for you and your wallet, as the cost has decreased by 10% this year. They make a quick and healthy snack, taste amazing in baked goods, and can even enhance savory dishes like salads and pork chops.

14. Natural Gas

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Natural gas costs 3.2% less today than last year to heat, cook, and power appliances around your home. For most people, that’s only a few dollars less to pay each month, but thankfully it’s not going up.

15. Rice and Pasta

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Rice and pasta, staples in most household pantries, are down 1.4%. Again, it’s not a huge decline, but you can find some relief in this area with the costs of most other groceries going way up. Plus, they are extremely versatile and can be used in many delicious dishes.

16. Tools and Outdoor Equipment

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Outdoor enthusiasts and home improvement gurus will pay slightly less (3.7%) for their tools and equipment. So, if you enjoy spending time in nature or tackling DIY projects, now might be the perfect time to invest in some new gear or upgrade your equipment.

17. Public Transportation

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One of the cheaper transportation options just became a little cheaper. The price of public transit is down 5.6%, which commuters will surely appreciate. Who knows? The lower cost (and environmental benefits) may encourage more people to choose public transportation.

18. Cereal

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I love cereal! It’s been my go-to breakfast and bed snack ever since I was a kid. While I don’t eat the sugary chocolate cereal with marshmallows and a special toy in the box anymore, I still buy cereal every week and appreciate that its cost has gone down a little.

19. Computers and Accessories

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Computers, accessories, and smart home tech cost a little less than a year ago. With technology changing so quickly, keeping up with the latest programs and products can add up, so every little bit helps.

20. Household Furniture

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If you need a new couch or kitchen table, now might be the right time to buy one. With lower prices, you can find quality pieces that fit your budget and make your home feel more homey.

21. Jewelry and Watches

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Whether you buy jewelry and watches as investments, fashion accessories, or status symbols, the costs of purchasing these items have gone from last year. If there are pieces you’ve been considering adding to your collection, you should find them at the right price.

22. Sporting Goods

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The price of sporting goods like bikes and equipment is slightly lower this year than last, so now is a great time to stock up on the gear you’ll need for the summer. The lower cost might make starting a new sport-related hobby more accessible.

23. Fish and Seafood

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The cost of meat has gone up; in my area, we can barely afford beef anymore. However, fish and seafood prices have decreased by 2.6%, so it might be a good time to switch up our protein sources and incorporate more seafood into our meals.

24. Tires

young girls helping dad change a flat tire
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Owning a car is expensive, but drivers can find a break when it comes to buying tires. With prices down, replacing worn-out tires will put less strain on your wallet. You can maintain your vehicle’s safety without feeling as much financial pressure.

Inflation Hasn’t Hit Everything

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Inflation is unavoidable, but you can navigate it in ways that lessen its impact. Several items, from smartphones to public transportation, are more affordable today than a year ago. These reduced prices help consumers save money, indulge a little, upgrade their lives, or stock up on groceries.

Stop Wasting Your Money

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Between paying bills, buying groceries, and saving for retirement, we could also use a little more money each month. One of the simplest ways to free up a little room in our budgets is to stop wasting money on things we don’t actually need. Here are 22 things my family and I stopped buying, and so should you.

Amanda Kay, the founder of My Life, I Guess, provides valuable career advice and support for anyone striving to make a living and, more importantly, make a life. Whether it's navigating job searches, learning new skills, overcoming unemployment, or dealing with debt, My Life, I Guess has been a go-to resource for career guidance and financial stability since 2013. Amanda's expertise and relatable approach have been featured in trusted publications such as MSN,, Yahoo! Finance, the Ladders and Fairygodboss.

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