20 Products Today That Are Way Cheaper Than They Were 20 Years Ago

Even inflation can't touch these ever-cheapening products.

If you listen to the stories your parents and grandparents tell, you're probably convinced that, just a few decades ago, every candy bar cost a nickel and $60 a month could practically rent you a palace. However, while inflation and rising production costs have dramatically increased the price of countless goods over the past few decades, for many others, they're just getting cheaper.

That's right: despite what it may seem, there are countless products that have actually had dramatic price drops over the past few decades. Just check out these 20 products that are cheaper today than they were 20 years ago—some might have you surprised. And for more money-saving tips, check out the 52 Ways to Be Smarter With Money in 2018!


Everyday Energy Killers

While you may have paid a pretty penny for that enormous flat screen TV, odds are you actually spent less on it that someone would have two decades ago. In fact, according to one report, TVs cost less than half of what they did per square inch 20 years ago. And when you're ready to revamp your space, start with the 40 Items Every Man Should Have in His Home.

Domestic Plane Tickets

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Airfare may still feel like a major expense when you're forking over hundreds, if not thousands of dollars to fly home for the holidays. However, research suggests that the price of airplane travel—at least within the United States—has actually plummeted a staggering 21.01 percent since 2000. In fact, they've fallen approximately 50 percent over the past 40 years, when adjusted for inflation. 
Want to make your next vacation more enjoyable? Try these 35 Brilliant Travel Hacks Only Experienced Globetrotters Know.

Nike Sneakers

Nike Kobe Bryant Sneaker

Those new Nikes you're spending an arm and a leg on? Yeah, they're still cheaper than what your parents paid for a pair 20 years ago. In fact, the Kobe A.D. NXT costs just $150, while a comparable pair of Jordans in 2000 would have set you back $190. And when you're ready to up your footwear game, start with the 30 Coolest Pairs of Slip-On Shoes for Summer.

Toyota Camrys

Toyota Camry sedan

Despite its popularity, the price of the Toyota Camry hasn't actually kept up with inflation. According to research from the Washington Post, the current price for a Toyota Camry LE—$23,955—is 7 percent cheaper today than it was 20 years ago when adjusted for inflation. Looking for a new ride of your own? Check out The Best New Cars for 2018.

Starbucks House Blend

starbucks storefront barista secrets

While the price of Starbucks drinks seems to go up every time we set foot in the store, the price of their beans is actually not rising along with the cost of inflation. In fact, a pound of Starbucks House Blend will run you about $9.30 at big box retailers today, and has been steadily declining in price when adjusted for inflation over the past two decades. Between 2000 and 2010 alone, the adjusted price dipped 7.23 percent. Need more inspiration to brew a cup? Discover the 75 Amazing Benefits of Coffee!

Ikea POÄNG Chairs

Ikea chair

You may think of Ikea as a place where everything is always affordable, but it turns out that some things are actually cheaper at the Swedish furniture mecca today than they were two decades ago. The Ikea POÄNG chair, which cost $150 back in the '90s, will set you back as little as $79 today. And when you want to make your house a whole lot chicer, get rid of the 50 Things No Man Over 40 Should Own.


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Okay, we get it: you probably don't use your CD player as much as you did 20 years ago. However, if you're still among the few purchasing CDs, you're in luck: CDs are often even cheaper than digital downloads today, whereas a new CD generally ran upwards of $20 just two decades ago. 
And for more music-related fun, check out the 30 Funniest Lines From Country Songs.


glistening apple

While you'd probably be hard-pressed to find people who think they're not being gouged on groceries, many of your favorite items are actually getting cheaper. Between 2000 and 2010 alone, the adjusted price of a pound of Red Delicious apples fell 3.85 percent. In fact, recent research actually suggests that the price of Red Delicious and Gala apples are nearing all-time lows. And for more ways to save money while shopping, check out these 15 Grocery Store Mistakes That Are Killing Your Wallet!

Children's Clothing

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Raising kids is never cheap, but luckily, some parts are getting a whole lot less expensive. Case in point: children's clothing costs over a quarter less, on average, than it did two decades ago. Of course, parenting goes well beyond the aesthetic; before you have children of your own, make sure you know these 40 Parenting Hacks for Raising an Amazing Kid!

The Toyota Corolla

Toyota Corolla sedan
Roman Korotkov / Shutterstock.com

The ever-popular Toyota Corolla is yet another car you can for less money than you would have paid for it 20 years ago. A new, base model Corolla will cost you $18,600 today, whereas the $12,998 base price in 1997 would actually set you back more than $20,000 in today's dollars. And before you set foot in another vehicle, make sure it's not one of the 20 Worst Rental Cars of the Last 20 Years!

MP3 Players


As MP3 players become more and more ubiquitous, their prices continue to fall. Back in 2001, when the first iPod was released, it had just 5GB of storage space and cost $399. Today, a 16GB iPod starts at just $199.

Vitamix Blenders

Vitamix blender

The Vitamix, otherwise known as the gold standard for blenders, is a pricey appliance, but the company hasn't actually been adjusting its prices along with inflation. A Vitamix 5200 now starts at $399.95, $.05 less than it cost in 2000, and nearly $200 less when adjusted for inflation.

BMW 3-Series

BMW 3 series

Think luxury cars are only getting more expensive? Think again. Take, for example, the BMW 318i, which cost $26,720 back in 1998. Today, a comparable model, the 320i, costs $34,445, a 13 percent dip when adjusted for inflation.

Cell Phone Plans

Girl Smiling at Phone Romance

While smartphone plans used to cost consumers an arm and a leg, they've been gradually getting less expensive over the course of the past two decades. Case in point: today, you can get a 2GB data plan from Verizon for just $35 a month, and, on average, cell phone plans are 20 percent cheaper today than they were in 2000.


Man Smiling and Reading Poems

Being well-read is cheaper than ever these days, thanks to the proliferation of used book sellers and eBooks. However, the actual cost of print books is getting lower in many cases, as well. According to the School Library Journal, the price of non-fiction trade paperbacks was actually slightly cheaper in 2017 than the previous year, too.


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While digital cameras are becoming increasingly obsolete for many smartphone devotees, if you do still prefer a traditional camera, they're getting cheaper. According to U.S. News and World Report, camera prices dipped 64 percent between 2000 and 2010 alone, and have continued to drop. Today, a new Canon PowerShot ELPH costs just $119.99, a significant dip since its release.

Solar Panels

Solar technology
zstock / Shutterstock

If you want to save the environment and save yourself some cash, there's never been a better time to do it. The price of solar panels is less than half of what it was less than a decade ago, and prices have been steadily falling for decades.


Kids Fighting Over Toy Parenting

Sure, shelling out cash for your kid's every whim is still expensive. However, toys are actually cheaper today than they have been in the past, and prices continue to fall as manufacturing is increasingly done overseas.


save money on clothes

While computers are likely to always be a bit of a drain on your bank account, they're significantly less likely to decimate your savings today than ever before. While a Compaq laptop with a 250 MB hard drive started at $2598 just over 20 years ago, a MacBook Pro with a 256 GB hard drive starts at just $1799 today.

Honda Odyssey

Honda Minivan

Those looking for a reliable minivan in the late '90s couldn't have known that the price of their beloved Honda Odysseys wouldn't rise along with inflation. While a Honda Odyssey started at just $23,810 in 1998, or $35,200.72 in today's dollars, a new Odyssey starts at just $29,990 today. And for more money-saving tips, check out the 40 Easy Ways to Stretch Your Paycheck!

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Sarah Crow
Sarah Crow is a senior editor at Eat This, Not That!, where she focuses on celebrity news and health coverage. Read more
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