Inspired by a posting on a well-known gadget blog, Pocket-lint decided to take a closer look at Apple’s refund and return policy. As it gets ever closer to MacWorld in January, where new products are bound to be unveiled, it pays to wait to buy a new computer until then.

Or you could buy before Steve Jobs’s keynote speech, providing you do so with an eye on Apple’s refund policy.

The US and UK Apple Stores online actually have different refund and returns policy, so we’ve taken a look at each, so you can plan with the keynote speech on 9 January in mind.

In both the UK and the US, you can return an item within 14 calendar days of receiving the product, but the US doesn’t accept customised, configured, or personalised products for return, while the UK stores accepts both standard and configured hardware within 14 days of delivery.

The US store also levies a 10% open box fee, while the UK store adds some hefty shipping costs: £30 on products that cost under £300, and £60 on products that cost more than £300.

Both stores offer a special Christmas Purchase Return extension, whereby products bought or received between 31 October and 24 December can be returned up until 8 January.

Apple USA and UK both offer upgrade protection, which means the stores will fulfill your order with the most current version available; if the version changes between you placing your order and shipment, you’ll be asked to confirm your order.

Apple in the US also has an extra nicety, called price protection. If Apple reduces the price on any product within 10 calendar days of shipment you can request a refund or receive a credit of the difference between the price that you paid and the current price.

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