Answer by PooPsTech · Jul 05, 2012 at 11:39 AM
I suggest very strongly that you contact an Apple store and inquire about this. You can buy an OPEN iPhone and that has no activation, since you are paying the full price. Also, can't you wait a few months? The iPhone 5 is coming...
Answer by Eggaro · Aug 08, 2012 at 06:58 PM
I recommend getting an used iPhone 4S or even 4 since getting a 4S right now will mean that you have to wait to upgrade for the upcoming model that should arrive in a few months.
But Apple will make you activate the phone if you buy it on a contract with a provider.