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A Step-by-Step Guide to Saving Money on Textbooks

International students spend an enormous amount of money on textbooks every semester. This is a burden on students who are on a tight budget. To help you, no matter your course of study, consider these smart strategies to save on textbooks.

Step 1: Check with students from higher years

This doesn’t have to be in person (although it can be if you know someone who has done your course) but take advantage of message boards. This can be the old fashioned style pin-up boards around your faculty or in your student accommodation. Don’t just settle for waiting for someone to advertise, put up your own advert detailing what you need and how to contact you. If your university or faculty has an online message board, then do the same thing there.

Step 2: Use an online tool like Textbook Exchange

Head to an online resale website, like Textbook Exchange, that allows students to list their unwanted textbooks. Type in the ISBN for the book you require and then view the results. Depending on the location of the other student you can either do the exchange on your campus, in the city centre or get it delivered using Australia Post Cash on Delivery. Generally, you will save about 50% on the original retail price.

Step 3: Consider eBooks

Do you need a hard copy of your textbook? Buying a digital edition of your textbook will not only save you money but allow you to access the content from various locations without carrying a heavy textbook. Some textbooks can even be rented digitally, saving you, even more, money.

Step 4: Rent your textbooks

You only need a textbook for one semester so why buy when you can rent? Zookal allows you to rent all of your required textbooks at the start of the semester and then simply return them at the end. If you spend more than $50, then delivery is free!

Step 5: Use the library

Your library will stock copies of textbooks for all courses which could help if you are really struggling financially. You may get lucky and find one available for loan, but it is more likely you will have to settle for an in-house option. This is obviously not ideal, but it will allow you to stay on top of your course with breaking your budget.