I know many schools have already started their spring semesters, but seeing as my school hasn’t started yet, I wanted to share my tips for buying textbooks. As an English major, I usually need several books per class, partially because my books are usually novels. For spring semester this year, I need 31 books. Yes, 31. Can you believe it? I couldn’t when I found out. I feel like 31 books for a single semester is just mad. But alas, they are required and I had to buy them. Since I had to buy so many books, I looked into a few ways of purchasing them. Now I’d like to share some tips.
1. Assess what books you have to buy from your campus bookstore. I almost always have to buy course readers through the bookstore. These are usually expensive, but only sold through the bookstore on campus because they are college and class specific. These books will need to be bought first. From there, you can make a list of books you still need to buy.
2. Determine which books you can buy used.
I typically buy general ed class textbooks used because I usually don’t plan on keeping them or needing them. I’m also not as picky about what is written in them when I read them. For major classes, however, I buy my books new.
3. Go to your local used bookstore.
I prefer to shop local, so I usually go to my local used bookstore to see if any of my novels or books are for sale there. I can usually find a fairly good amount of novels at my local bookstore.
4. Look on Chegg or Amazon.
Amazon and Chegg always have good prices. The cool thing about Amazon is they now offer a rental option if it’s a large textbook you have zero intention of using again. Amazon also has better prices than places like Barnes and Noble and others. Also, if you have amazon prime, you basically get the best price possible.
5. Buy online or e-book versions.
If you can, and your professor allows, buy textbooks in e-book or online versions. This saves loads of money, and will ensure you don’t have to deal with a pesky hard-copy if it isn’t a vital textbook.
How do you find great textbook deals?