For most of us in Florida, school starts next week. For college students, that also means time to buy textbooks. I’ve noticed my textbook prices creeping up for some time, and it’s really getting out of hand. With prices reaching up to $250 per book, I found myself having to sell my items to Plato’s closet and Amazon just to stay afloat. Taking four classes per semester, it added up quickly! Here are a few methods my friends and I have used to find our way around this expense over the years:
Search online bookstores. This one seems obvious, but many people still don’t conduct their own price comparisons. I use Amazon, Half (Ebay), and Valore Books, in particular. I’ve found some pretty sweet deals on books in great condition.
Try Craig’s List. You can find tons of textbooks nearby, especially for community colleges. Just make sure to meet in a safe, public, and well lit area. Starbucks cafes or shopping malls always work great for me.
Peruse school bulletin boards. If you’re already on campus, might as well swing by! Sometimes students are desperate to unload their books quickly, so it’s always good to check.
Rent for the semester. This ended up being the best option for me this semester because my books were really expensive to buy. Chegg has been the main textbook renter, but Amazon also recently joined the bandwagon. Beware: be proactive. Additional charges apply for lost books and late returns, especially if they need to be back around the holiday time.
If you’re REALLY lacking funds, you can:
Borrow the library’s copy. Desperate times call for desperate measures. Although, I think the price of photocopying a lot of pages would also become an expense after a while. Right?
Share a book. This takes some planning, but my Microbiology lab group was successful. We bought one workbook at the bookstore and split the cost four ways. We each made our own copies of the assignment pages and made sure everyone had a chance to use the book before the deadlines came. It worked out well because everyone was responsible, and we actually ended up getting better grades because the channels of communication were open.
Hope this helps!
Any other tips? Feel free to share them with us in the comment box below!