Save Money On Schools Supplies In College

College is Expensive. Here are some tips on how to save a little money.
College is Expensive. Here are some tips on how to save a little money. | Source

1. Be Wary of the Bookstore

You will be pressured to run down and buy all of the books on the list from the campus bookstore. Resist that urge. The bookstore is only to be used in emergencies such as “I just washed my calculator and I have a test in 20 minutes,” or if you need a blue book.

The bookstore is usually a good place to get your college swag.

You will be able to find just about everything cheaper on Amazon.

The campus bookstore is great for some things, but not others.
The campus bookstore is great for some things, but not others. | Source

2. Sign Up for Amazon Prime

You can get a six month free trial of Amazon Prime when you sign up with your school e-mail address and then it's only half price after that. You’re going to use this account when it comes time to buy your text books. You can also use it to watch free movies and tv shows and get all sorts of other cool deals. I'm not saying you have to purchase it when the free trial is over, it's just a good way to get you through that first year of book buying.

3. Stock Up on Notebooks

Everything is cheaper in July and August when the school supplies hit the retailers. You can often get stuff cheaper than the dollar store. *gasp* Stock up on everything. Notebooks, pens, folders. It will cost you almost double if you wait till January to buy for the spring semester.

Then hit up the clearance and buy those One Direction and Justin Bieber notebooks if you really want to be frugal.

Notebooks: get them when they're $0.50 instead of $2.00
Notebooks: get them when they're $0.50 instead of $2.00 | Source

4. Choose a Sturdy Backpack

You’re going to want to take your textbooks with you to class and if you have a large campus going back to your room to get books sucks. So you want a sturdy ones with solid straps. I would avoid over the shoulder bags, they look cool but they kill you when you carry books (I should know I used one for four years). It may cost you more now but you won't have to worry about replacing it.

5. Consider an E-Reader

You can get a basic Kindle for pretty cheap (or download the app if you have a smartphone). While you can’t sell e-books back, having them in digital form is much easier on your back than having the physical textbooks. If you’re going into a literature heavy major it could be worth it. It’s also easier to read a couple pages at a time than with a physical book.

You can also save your syllabus' there and any digital documents your teacher e-mails to you plus they can do a whole bunch of other things now too. Besides, it will be useful when you are done with college as well.

6. Wait For the Book to be Assigned Before Buying

This is why you have Amazon Prime, so you can get that book in two days. Teachers assign a lot of books and while they probably genuinely want you to read them there isn’t always time in the syllabus to make that happen, and after sick days and snow days, some books just get cut out or they expect you to read them on your own time. Why should you be spending money on something you won’t use?

I bought too many books that were assigned only to never touch them. The resale value is never as good.

7. Sell Your Books Back Online

When you’re sure you’re never going to need to see that textbook again (if it’s something for your major consider keeping it till you graduate) then sell it back through Half.com. They let you list it basically forever and they only charge you a small percentage when it sells. (Amazon charges you a dollar per book plus the percentage.)

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