Most students have limited money – textbooks can cost hundreds of dollars each semester! Use these tips to find bargains and save money on getting your books!
Textbooks are ridiculously overpriced. If you’re anything like me, you’re struggling just to get financial aid and private loans to pay for school, spending $200 – $800 on textbooks per semester is insane and not an option. There are ways to get cheap textbooks, the best advice is to scour the internet to get the best deals. Here are a few tips I have from personal experience and that of my friends to help you save as much money as possible.
Note: Sometimes it’s a good idea to wait until you go to your first class to make sure you actually are going to use the books on the list. There’s nothing worse than spending a crapload of money on a book and then not even needing to open it once. Granted, some classes require the book on the first day, so use your own judgment.
First and foremost: The school bookstore should always be your last option for getting your books. They’re crazy expensive here, and if you sell them back after the semesters over, even if you never open the book, you’ll only get a small percentage of your money back. Rip-off.
1. The library – Why pay for your books if you can get them for free? Check to see if local public libraries or your school library carries the book, and if it isn’t one you will need to bring to every class and use religiously for homework, it might be a good idea to just use the library copy.
2. Google Books – Sometimes you can get lucky and a copy of the book you need will be on the internet for free. It’s hard to find whole copies of textbooks online for free, but a lot of times (especially for those literature classes) novels and other fiction books will be somewhere to be found.
3. Some great websites to check out for buying cheap textbooks:
Half.com is always my first choice. They have a huge selection and often times you can buy books for up to 50% or more off the retail price. Generally speaking, the worse the condition of the book, the cheaper it is, so if you don’t mind using a well worn copy, sometimes it’s a good idea to get a heavily used copy for even less. Keep in mind that it will hurt the books resell value when you’re trying to sell it back.
Amazon.com is a great place for new books, but they also have used books as well. Amazon is generally more expensive than half.com, but sometimes you can find great deals here too.
4. You can always rent textbooks. Sometimes it is cheaper to go to chegg.com and rent the book you need for a semester for a single price and then mail it back when you’re done. The downside is if you do this, you can’t make any money by selling it back, but sometimes it’s the best option. I would suggest doing this for foreign language textbooks, because they can often be very expensive, sometimes over $200 even used. You can usually rent them for around $50 for a semester on chegg. (chegg.com)
These are some of the things I have done to get cheap textbooks – Feel free to add your suggestions or let me know if any of these have helped you!
Taken from my blog, Du Jour.