It’s Cheaper to Fly to the US to Buy Adobe CS6 Than to Buy it In Australia


Here’s a crazy fact that’s making the rounds on the Internet: if you live in Australia, it’s currently cheaper for you to fly to the US and back to purchase a copy of Adobe Creative Suite Master Collection than to purchase it in your own country.

Gizmodo reported yesterday that the CS6 Master Collection currently carries an official MSRP of $2,599 in the States, but carries a crazy price tag of $4,334 in Australia.

That’s a not-so-small difference of $1,735. looked up current ticket prices, and found that you can take a trip to Los Angeles from Sydney on Virgin Australia for $1147.58. So basically, instead of shelling out over four grand for the box set in Australia, you can take a vacation to the US, pick up a copy of the software while you’re here, and fly back home — and still save hundreds of dollars ($587, to be exactly). And you’ll pick up some airline miles, to boot.

Taking this vacation to purchase CS6 will save your hundreds over purchasing it directly in Australia

Taking this vacation to purchase CS6 will save your hundreds over purchasing it directly in Australia

Adobe was recently summoned before the Australian Parliament to explain why prices for its software is so much higher in Australia than in other countries around the world. The company responded to the inquiry earlier this week by dropping the annual subscription cost of its Creative Cloud to $50 per month (down from $63) — the same rate as it charges customers in the US. Non-long-term subscriptions were dropped from $95 to $75.

While that’s fantastic news for those interested in doing a perpetual monthly payment for software instead of paying one time for a boxed copy, creatives who would prefer the latter are still stuck with sky high prices for now.

If you’re in that boat, at least now you know that you have the alternate option of receiving a free vacation.

(via Gizmodo via via Neowin)

Update: Delimiter posted this video today showing Adobe’s CEO dodging a question regarding his company’s pricing (or price gouging) in Australia:

Image credit: Photo illustration based on Virgin Australia 737 by Simon_sees

  • Marius

    He dodges the question. People dodge the price. Why should people be correct and buy a copy and the sob doesn’t even answer the question. I will never buy something from adobe as long as that guy is the ceo.

  • Nick me

    Same reason why we allow foreign companies glut the market with cheap imports to kill local manufacturing to then put the price up again. If you don’t like the two federal governments ruining our country then vote for someone that stops this. We don’t need a senate enquiry we need a government with balls.

  • Nick me

    Apple who demand 30% for apps to be in the Apple store for doing Jack? Hang on, what price do you pay for an iPhone or iPad?

  • Nick me

    I like your thinking ;)

  • Nick me

    Localisations….. like colour or color? We spell like the English, so no special needs for us there.

  • Nick me

    Same as to why Google don’t pay a cent in Tax after a profit of AU$750 million in 2011 from AU advertisers…. there accounting is done in Ireland (in other words overseas where there is very little tax)

  • Nick me

    In other words around 6% state tax but Adobe doesn’t have a store in every state. They are probably a delaware LLC company paying Jack in taxes. Australia only pays 10% tax in GST but additionally 5% in import duties if applicable. Talking about taxes is quibbling over the small difference, it’s because these companies can do it.

  • tertius_decimus

    Thank you! That’s a good news.

  • k

    I bet he doesn’t sell his art to Aussie customers twice as much as he does to Americans.

  • M

    Doing Jack? Really..? Why would you want your app there then? Not ’cause it is a platform that reaches a lot of potential customers, not ’cause they’re actually charging you less for distribution (software and content) than other traditional and weaker systems would? Distribution has a value that people will pay for. Apple’s 30% isn’t high for what it gives developers access to, and they have after all built and do maintain the darn thing.

  • DafOwen

    Similar used to be true for the UK and buying high-end photography equipment. Not sure any more.

    There used to be a funny one in the UK and Microsoft:
    Buying the retail product/packaging used to be cheaper than downloading it!
    This was because Microsoft were based in Ireland due to the lower corporation tax, however their VAT WAS higher than the UK’s – So download had High VAT, retail packaging lower UK VAT. Has changed now though.

  • Loek

    If anyone wants to buy Adobe Master Collection in The Netherlands a better option:
    Buy a ticket to New York for € 575,- (from Amsterdam) buy CS6 MC for € 1942, – take € 1000, – pocket money and save more than € 100 to CS6 Master Collection NL (€ 3630, -) …

  • Gavin

    Mak you are right. But I wasnt dissing China, the point I was making is that the SsangYong is good value for money…it just isn’t in the same league as a Landcruiser. If I wanted to dis China I would have chosen the Chery which I believe is uninsurable in australia due to inadequate build and safety standards ;-)

  • Daniel Grice

    The primary reason for US/Australia price differences is labour. Even for downloads. Min. wage in US is about $6/hr. In Aust. it is $16/hr (that’s US$34k per annum) with higher rates for overtime, weekends etc. A box of fluff from China costs about the same in US$ to get to the dock in Australia, USA or anywhere in the world. But the cost of labour at the wharf, transport to importer’s warehouse, transport to retailer, the labour overheads of the wharf, importer and retailer, the cost of advertising, cost of insurance, etc. are all about 2-3x the cost of the same in the USA because of that high labour rate. Real estate is also more expensive in most of Australia so warehouse and retail rents are higher. And we do less volume in Australia so all of the overhead has to be spread over fewer boxes. Also Aust interest rates are higher than in the US so the retailers need a higher margin to justify being in business rather than just banking their capital. Therefore, a box of fluff has to cost a lot more in Australia than in US so everyone in the chain can get paid. And while a software (or any media) download has no local labour, it still has to compete with the boxed product. If a manufacturer sells a download in Australia for the US price then local retailers will stop carrying their products and that sales channel will be lost. Some people will only buy boxed product (software or enterntainment media) from retail stores, so the manufacturers aren’t willing to undercut them.

  • GokhanCukurova

    Australian Dollar has less value than US dollar. I believe this is wrong calculation. False info is being put out to bring more clicks?
    AU $ is less value than US $, $4300 AU is not equal of $4300 USD. This post was not providing true information and too bad the editor didn’t care much before putting this out :( sorry guys

  • Marie

    The problem with GIMP is there is such a steep learning curve, not only to do the difficult things (like in Photoshop) but for the simplest things.

    If my choice is between an open-source software that doesn’t easily do all I want, or if it does it takes ages for me to learn and possibly the easiest pirateable piece of software on earth that’s easy to use, I’m going to download Photoshop. (I’m from NZ, pretty sure we have the same ridiculous price for it and as a student I couldn’t afford it either way..)

  • Greg McKay

    That still doesn’t justify the cost difference for something that is DOWNLOADED OVER THE INTERNET!?

  • Roland

    My poor ignorant friend, if you googled a quick currency check you will find AUD is valued higher than the USD. AUD $4300 = USD $4450

  • ninpou_kobanashi

    If you had any sense or scruples or morals, you’d not use the software. If you don’t like the price, don’t f’n buy it [or steal it]. Can you imagine, saying, officer, this POS car is so overpriced, that’s why I HAD to steal it.

  • ninpou_kobanashi

    Actually, that’s what student pricing is for.

  • Lulubell

    This might be a really dumb question, but I’m not computer savvy: Does the software work on computers worldwide or is it different in different countries? I know DVDs are different, and that’s why I ask. Australians pay so much more for everything from cars to software. We seem to be highly paid, but the fat cats still take it all. I always tell people online that I can’t afford Photoshop, but of course they have no idea of the cost here. They must think I’m poverty stricken. Shame on such a rip-off company.

  • Jim

    He told you why – “and while a software (or any media) download has no local labour, it still has to compete with the boxed product.”

    I am as annoyed about is as the next guy – it’s the same in the UK, but his reasoning is legitimate, you live in an expensive country.

  • pewpew

    actually yea, if you NEED a car, then you will have even a POS one. Morals is nothing to do with a product. It might come into it when the product pays for illegal wars or something.

  • dan

    Uhhhgh. Gimp is awful. I have spent hours trying to do the simplest things on it with nothing to show for it in the end. I appreciate that someone put their time and energy into sharing a free resource with others, but it is configured in such a difficult way, that it quickly shifts from free resource to worthless aggravating time suck.