Paying for a semester of college is expensive enough, but the cost of college textbooks adds a significant amount to the price of your higher education, since almost every class requires one or more books. Buying a textbook outright can be costly and it will generally lose value after use. Renting a textbook, on the other hand, is an affordable choice that allows the student to use a book on the condition that they return it at a specified date.
This guide will help you compare university bookstore prices against online bookstores and make a low cost decision. Textbook prices will vary depending on the book, its edition and the condition it is in. Any additional textbook materials, such as a CD or an access code, are usually not included in a rental.
1. Search for your textbook(s) on your respective college bookstore’s website. Local colleges such as Butler County Community College, Friends University, Newman University and Wichita State University have their own online databases. You can search by individual class or make a list by manually entering your class’s course number.
2. For each book, find the 10 or 13-digit ISBN number located in the description.
3. Visit BIGWORDS and enter your book’s ISBN. BIGWORDS compares the best textbook bookstores at once by calculating the shipping and promotions available for each store. It then selects the cheapest combination, saving you the most money possible.
4. Not convinced that you have found the best deal? There are several other bookstores not listed on BIGWORDS that may offer even deeper discounts. And definitely check out textbook options on Amazon (referral link) – they have rentals too.
5. You may be able to save a percentage off your order by entering a coupon or promo code at checkout. If you’ve decided to rent or buy from an online bookstore, visit RetailMeNot to search for additional savings and coupon codes.
Find 9 other ways to save money on college textbooks at Living on the Cheap.