How to get an Apple Watch on an installment plan
If you don't want to pay full price up front for your new Apple Watch, you can get it on an installment plan from your carrier. While Apple doesn't offer its own Apple Watch installment plan (or an upgrade program, like it does for the iPhone), these plans are available from the three major U.S. cellular carriers: Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile.
These plans allow you to spread out the cost of your Apple Watch over anywhere from 24 to 30 months. This is especially helpful if you've got your eye on the more expensive stainless steel models. Each carrier has its own setup for their Apple Watch installment plans. Here's how they stack up.
Keep this in mind: currently, all four carriers only sell the aluminum and stainless steel versions of the Apple Watch Series 6. The titanium Edition watches are only available through Apple. Also, these watches generally come with the Sport Band, Sport Loop, or Milanese Loop. You may want to shop around for an Apple Watch band more to your liking.
Whlie in previous years Verizon has opted to offer the Apple Watch at a higher monthly cost in exchange for a shorter overall payment period, for the Apple Watch Series 6, the carrier has opted to join the 24-month bandwagon. This brings down the cost of the monthly installments, though you'll still have paid full price for your Apple Watch when all is said and done.
Verizon offers most cellular models of the Apple Watch Series 6, including both the aluminum and stainless steel versions, as well as the Apple Watch SE. The Hermès models are not available from any carrier.
Here's what Verizon's Apple Watch pricing looks like for the Apple Watch Series 6:
- 40mm Aluminum: $20.83/mo.
- 44mm Aluminum: $22.08/mo.
- 40mm Stainless Steel: $29.16/mo.
- 44mm Stainless Steel: $31.24/mo.
- 40mm Stainless Steel w/Milanese Loop: $31.24/mo.
- 44mm Stainless Steel w/Milanese Loop: $33.33/mo.
Meanwhile, beacause the Apple Watch SE as sold by Verizon only comes with a few band types, and the watch only comes in aluminum the pricing for the Apple Watch SE is pretty simple:
- 40mm Aluminum: $13.74/mo.
- 44mm Aluminum: $14.99/mo.
Unless otherwise noted, these watches all come with either a Sport Band or a Sport Loop.
See at Verizon (opens in new tab)
AT&T offers lower monthly payments than Verizon, but you'll be paying off your watch over the course of 30 months. For the Apple Watch Series 6, AT&T offers the 40mm watch in both aluminum and stainless steel in all available colors. The Apple Watch SE is also available in all colors.
The pricing for the Apple Watch Series 6 breaks down like this:
- 40mm Aluminum: $16.67/mo.
- 44mm Aluminum: $17.67/mo.
- 40mm Stainless Steel: $23.34/mo.
- 44mm Stainless Steel: $25/mo.
- 40mm Stainless Steel w/Milanese Loop: $25/mo.
- 44mm Stainless Steel w/Milanese Loop: $26.67/mo.
And for the Apple Watch SE:
- 40mm Aluminum: $11/mo.
- 44mm Aluminum: $44/mo.
See at AT&T (opens in new tab)
T-Mobile's payments work a bit differently compared to those from other carriers. While you still pay a different amount per month depending on the size of your Apple Watch, if you pick up a stainless steel watch, you will pay the same each month for both the 40mm and 44mm models. This also probably has to do with the up-front payment you'll also need to make when buying a stainless steel Apple Watch, which is $171.99 for the 40mm watch and either $221.99 or $271.99 for the 44mm version, with the larger price being for those watches that come with a Milanese Loop.
- 40mm Aluminum: $20.84/mo.
- 44mm Aluminum: $22.09/mo.
- 40mm Stainless Steel: $22/mo.
- 44mm Stainless Steel: $22/mo.
Meanwhile, the Apple Watch SE prices, featuring no up-front cost, are as follows:
- 40mm Aluminum: $13.75/mo.
- 44mm Aluminum: $15/mo.
See at T-Mobile (opens in new tab)
If there's anything else you want to know about buying an Apple Watch Series 6 on an installment plan, let us know in the comments.
Updated September 2020: Updated for Apple Watch SE (2020) and Apple Watch Series 6.
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Joseph Keller is the former Editor in Chief of iMore. An Apple user for almost 20 years, he spends his time learning the ins and outs of iOS and macOS, always finding ways of getting the most out of his iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and Mac.