im looking for cheap LCD displays
min 16x3 characters and backlit
does anyone have some tips?
Depends a lot on what you mean by “cheap”, how many you want, how fast you need them, and even where you are.
There are lots of sellers in China advertising cheap through ebay. Futurlec has good prices (but a record for being really erratic about delivery speed). Most surplus vendors tend to have smaller character LCD modules, but one of my favorite dealers has a 20x4 fairly (though not thrillingly) cheap at the moment.
Many Arduino suppliers, like Sparkfun and NKC, carry LCDs at good (but usually not “really cheap”) prices, compared to buying from Mouser or Digi-Key.