Are the less expensive laminates just as good as the higher prices ones?

There is a difference in the construction of the lower end products being direct pressure versus a high-pressure laminate product. With a high-pressure laminate the advantage is a better wear resistance, fewer scuffs and scratches, better impact resistance, no denting, better design clarity and a more realistic look. However, if a certain price point is desired, remember all laminates can be repaired or replaced by a professional installer.