When we first bought the Kindle, ebooks were much cheaper than their paper cousins, and we saved quite a bit of money. Thought that advantage has all but vanished, it is still hard to beat their convenience, especially when traveling. Being able to carry a trunk-full of books (and magazines, and newspapers) in a single light device, AND have the ability to instantly purchase any other book, wherever you happen to find yourself is simply amazing, even when you love, as I do, the smell and feel of good paper.
In the Kindle vs. iPad debate, I must say, although the Kindle feels positively antique (no touch screen?!? no color?!?) that if your goal is reading, the Kindle is much better. Much easier on the eyes, much more like an actual book. Plus, although you CAN search the web and get email it will not distract you the way an iPad will.