As any college student knows, one of the most expensive things about going to college, aside from the tuition, is the cost of buying books. Books for each semester of class can really add up, and the worst thing is that once you buy them, you are usually stuck with them, as many schools discontinue certain volumes or editions, not allowing you to sell them back.
College students can spend several hundred dollars a semester on books without even trying. I, for one, know that I spent upwards of $700 one semester just on books! However, there is bright light on the horizon for college students as many options, like renting a textbook or using an electronic copy of the book are gaining popularity. In some cases, renting a textbook can cost almost half as much as buying one.
According to University of Texas-San Antonio (UTSA) Campus Bookstore Director John Palmer, “Students really benefit. Those students that might not have course materials now have them available to them.” Electronic textbooks, that can be accessed from an iPad or laptop, are also gaining popularity. “Whether it is at their home PC or laptop notebook or iPad or mobile phone, they can pick up their book,” Palmer added.
UTSA offers digital textbooks via a service known as CafeScribe. A lot of the books are available to download digitally whereas others are available to purchase digitally. Just like renting a physical book, renting a digital book can save you a lot of money too. For example, a book on management leadership that costs you $181 new or $136 used will only cost you $86 digitally for 180 days.
Amazon just recently joined the electronic textbook rental business and allows consumers to rent textbooks on their Kindle or from their Kindle app. Barnes & Noble, Chubb and other companies have also entered the digital textbook rental market as well.
So, if you are a college student and are about to begin yet another semester in school, consider saving yourself a few hundred dollars and go with either a physical or digital textbook rental. Not only does it save you money but it also gives you a surefire way to dispose of your textbook at the end of the semester, one you will more than likely never have to use again.
Source: KSAT.com – College Students Save By Renting Textbooks, Going Digital