California State University – textbook tips on cheapest
How to find the cheapest books and textbooks, ebooks, rent, buy, used, new
The problem with comparison search engines is that their programming gives results that often do not show the least expensive price.
37oakfield.com suggests clicking the links below – each book site will open in a new tab. Then you can do true comparison, and find the seller with lowest priced version of the book you need. If you have searched travel sites, you’ll recognize the multiple tab approach, using many search engines to find the lowest price.
Enter what info you know about the book. Make sure you are ordering the version your professor wants. What year or edition? Do they need the online lab access to go with it? Most professors in U.S, want the U.S. version. Other country versions often have chapters in different order, or might not have exact same info. (most of info in book is similar)
Knetbooks results show the different versions and give comparison of renting, how long you want to rent it (different prices for longer time), ebooks, used or new. FREE shipping and $5 off your order.
eCampus has pull down menu when you enter book name of the different versions, with or without labs or workbooks. Their results also show comparison of renting, how long you want to rent it (different prices for longer), ebooks, used or new textbooks. FREE shipping and $5 off your order.
Amazon search results, give you different versions of book and also other choices. Their top search result often gives sellers that advertise or other sellers that Amazon wants to feature. Requires greater searching efforts as book could be listed multiple times. Orange BUY BOX is NOT always the lowest price! Look for link that says Used and New offers. Choose to have shipped from Amazon warehouse or many other sellers. Read descriptions of used books. Some describe better than others. Rent, ebooks, used or new textbooks. Students can get Amazon Prime.
AbeBooks has many book sellers, but not all textbooks are available. Many of their sellers are bookstores. Good to compare for required books that aren’t textbooks.
ebooks is another good source of non-textbooks.
Save money on books – borrow from library and make digital copies. Takes a few hours but you can copy a textbook onto a pen drive (copy machines have a USB port). Some colleges let you print pages using their printers and paper. Another alternative to save money is to buy the ebook or rent the book.
Shopping Amazon, look for link under products, for Used and New. Compare the sellers for price and delivery. Some sellers have products in Amazon warehouse, others ship themselves. Compare the cost of shipping with prime or shipping with a book seller. The buy box offers Amazon Prime shipping, but is not always the least expensive seller. Amazon is NOT a department store. Some things they have bought from vendors to sell themselves. Most things are sold by a few million independent sellers. Each has their own return policy. At the end of a semester there are many book companies that will buy your used books for a discounted price.