How to Find Cheaper College Textbooks

5 Apr

For new college students one of their first lessons learned may be about the cost of textbooks.  They may be surprised to find that they are paying $150 for a textbook, then getting a mere $20 when reselling to the campus bookstore at the end of the semester. The college book store is an exciting place for a freshman with all the college gear and campus logo items. You can’t help but have school spirit and think this is the place to outfit myself for all of my school needs.

A student needs to look past the glamor and look at the reality of the prices. College textbooks rise from 6% to 10%, on average, every year — that’s way past the rate of inflation. There’s nothing more frustrating than paying the full retail price or more on textbooks only to find out that many books are available at a discount. The cost of buying the textbooks can easily add up to $900 or more a year.

Thankfully, regulations that went into effect in about a year ago that was targeted to help students shop more competitively for the needed textbooks. Publishers can no longer bundle their textbooks with accompanying materials like workbooks without offering the items separately, and they must reveal their prices to professors when making a sales pitch. Colleges, meanwhile, are now required to provide students with a list of assigned textbooks during course registration, which allows for more time for shopping before classes begin.

That’s especially important now because there are an increasing number of ways to save on books if you buy or rent them online. One of the best tools is to use an online site that compares college textbook prices.  Finding cheap textbooks across dozens of sites would be time prohibitive but price comparison sites make it a snap. You should be able to compare new, used, rental, international edition as well as digital download versions of your book to make an informed decision on where to buy your books.

About the Author

Bob Jones set up Cheap-Textbooks.com, an internet website devoted to saving students cash and operates a blog on cheap textbook news and trends.

One Response to “How to Find Cheaper College Textbooks”

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  1. Get A Free Edition of Your Expensive Textbooks? | Ideal Tuition's Official Blog - April 17, 2012

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