University students can save money on textbooks

(NC) -- At the start of a new school semester, it's not only students who are learning to navigate the post-secondary education system. Parents are also on the same learning curve. As your child leaves the nest, ensuring you have given them everything they need, including how to save on back to school related items, is often as top of mind as the tearful goodbye.

According to StatsCan, Canadian tuition prices continue to rise and in 2012/13 the average undergraduate student paid over $5,581 in tuition costs, a 5% increase over the previous year. In addition to tuition, textbooks and course materials are said to average an extra $500 - $1,000 every semester. Whether you've been saving for years or the expense of school has come as a surprise, there's one thing all parents have in common – the desire to help their children save dollars wherever they can.

While tuition prices aren't flexible, there are serious savings to be had on course materials by shopping online. Here are easy tips on how to save time and money when shopping for textbooks:

New or used: It's not always necessary to purchase brand new textbooks. Often courses use the same textbook edition for several years, so it's useful to find out what professors are recommending for the new semester. Used textbooks are sold for up to 90 per cent off on websites like ( In fact, online retailers make it easy for students to compare prices and read reviews about the course materials and textbooks they need.

Ship directly to their dorm room: If your child is attending an out of city or province school, they'll need time to learn about the new city and campus they'll be calling home. They won't want to be stuck in long lineups at the campus bookstore. Online retailers can ship right to their door in as little as one day, meaning one less thing for them to lug back to their rooms – or fill the car with.

Essential extras: Go the extra mile and make sure your child is set with the latest test prep guides and essential reference books and while you're at it, you can throw in school supplies, bedding, or whatever your university student needs as they start the semester.

Helping your new scholar transition smoothly into university doesn't need to break the bank. This year, save money, time and stress by buying textbooks and school essentials online.


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