Turning the Page, Bookstore Buys Replaced by Online Sellers

College students pay thousands of dollars a year to further their education; because of this, the average student is tight on money. So when professors require textbooks, it's hard to find a good deal that will still leave you with some money. The school's bookstore is usually considered grossly overpriced, requiring students to spend hundreds of dollars for books that will not get much use. Instead of the bookstore, more and more students are turning to the online options such as Amazon or Chegg, but how do you know where the best deals are? Enter SlugBooks, a free, easy to use textbook price comparison website.

"I rent my books off of Amazon," said Trevor Waters, junior. "I ended up saving around $800 in all renting from there instead of renting or buying from the bookstore. It's just crazy how much cheaper it is for the same thing."  

SlugBooks takes the endless searching for the cheapest books and compares prices from eight different online buying and rental sites. The homepage claims finding books that would usually cost $200 for as cheap as $10. While I haven't found that exactly, I did find books that were in the $20-$40 range that would usually be listed well above $100, even a book for less than a dollar that is normally listed at $103.04.

SlugBooks allow the user to search for specific books using either the title of the book or, for those looking for something more specific, using the book's ISBN. It searches the top websites in terms of amount of users and how trustworthy the website is so that you never feel like you are giving your information out to be used against you. SlugBooks also has some pretty funny college-related videos and comics, but the main point still stand as to save students money when looking for textbooks.

Students are making the switch over to online shopping for textbooks for good reason.

"I use Chegg a lot, I like it because it's a fraction of the price and when you rent, they send reminder e-mails so you won't forget to return them. Also, they send coupons sometimes, and every little bit helps," said sophomore John Farella.

So why are students still buying their books from colleges? Some schools allow their students to buy the books early before the semester. There is a possibility that the book cannot be found online or it would actually end up costing more at some sites. While it is possible, I have not found such an instance with SlugBooks, this coupled with the possibility that the books can be rarely, if ever, opened, some students would rather take the risk and end up buying the book online than purchasing it before the semester even begins. 

"I actually don't need to worry about books; my parents usually cover the cost for me," Said Tom Czerminski, junior. 

Students that don't need to search online for better deals find the bookstore to be quite helpful. It is a reliable source run by the college itself. It is right on campus making it undoubtedly the most convenient option. But until prices are dropped if you are looking for cheap textbooks definitely check out SlugBooks.