Textbooks: Start Renting | Stop Buying| Unless you plan on selling them back !

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I once met a young high school graduate who wanted some insight on some of the future classes that he will be attending once he starts college. I believed I could provide some insight, but unfortunately what he really wanted were class notes and old textbooks.

The problem is, nowadays most textbooks are only valid for one year, and then they get an edition update rendering the previous iteration invalid.

Needless to say I could not help and didn’t own any of the books I’ve used because I never purchased them full price, I simply rented them.

I explained to the kid that he could just go online and rent his books, but he had no idea what I was talking about because he had never rented a textbook before.

Like many other students he purchased them out right from the school’s library, and like many other students he was overcharged.

Me: you know you can use Chegg and/or Amazon to rent your books rights?

Him: What the heck is Chegg? And Amazon? They don’t rent!

Well kid, you’re wrong! They do, and aside from these 3 giants there are other online services that rent textbooks, a simple google search is all you need.

And now a word on textbooks, I hate them, I am glad that services such as Chegg, Amazon, and Barnes & Noble exist because no one has time to be paying $150-$200 even $300 dollars for a heavy book that you’d only use for a single semester.

Yes, you can resell them, I’ll be writing about the best way to get a good band for your buck with your old textbooks in the future, but if selling is not in your bones, you really can’t afford to purchase your textbooks full price. You should, instead invest your money in traveling or paying off your student loans while you’re still in school to limit the accrued interest.

As I stated above there are many services that specialize in selling books at a very discounted price, however the best way to save on every semester textbook use is to simply rent them.

Depending on the book, you may check out Chegg, Amazon, Barnes & Noble

Note: all of these services will charge you a late fee and extend your rental if you do not return the books on time. (it happened to me, so keep tab on your return dates)


  • Chegg
    • Reliable company specializing in textbook sales and rentals
      • E-Books may be available on some purchases while the hard copy ships.
      • For an additional fee you may benefit from tutoring and textbook exercise answers
      • They send you cool stuff in the box sometimes to promote their partners (they once sent me Redbulls and soap samples
      • Free return label via UPS
      • Price Match Policy



  • Barnes & Nobles
    • Access to E-Books via the nook store
    • Ability to pick the books up at local stores
    • Free return shipping

I want to remain impartial and not tell you which one is my favorite because I honestly use all of them, I like that I can get the e-books while my product ships from Chegg, I enjoy the fast amazon shipping via prime (by the way – if you don’t have prime you will have to pay for the shipping, but the return is free) and I like that I can walk to any B&N and get the book. In the end it all comes down to pricing, so go hunt for whichever is cheaper.

Thank you as always for reading | Please share this post with a student or someone who might benefit from it.
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Note: This post contains promotional links for Amazon.com’s book rental services



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