SlugBooks, which touts itself as the Kayak for college textbooks, has announced that its comparisons feature has launched for Canadian universities, starting with over 900 schools in total.
The company pointed out that, while there are many textbook reselling sites out there, it’s the first textbook comparison site to expand into Canada.
SlugBooks’ PR told us that the spring semester is starting soon, so the timing is good. Actually, the term started Monday for most schools in Canada, but given how long it takes for most students to get back into the school rhythm, this isn’t too big of a deal.
In any case, SlugBooks now allows Canadian students to search books by university, class, major, and so on. The company claims its users can achieve savings of $50 to $100, though many save even more.
“Since SlugBooks’ launch in 2008, we’ve received consistent feedback from frustrated Canadian students who wanted to compare textbook prices online, but couldn’t,” David Miller founder of SlugBooks told TNW. “Over the past few years, enough online textbook marketplaces in Canada have matured to a point that we feel there is enough inventory for the price comparison experience to be useful, so we went ahead and built Canadian providers and Canadian prices into our experience.”
So, time to put it to the test. SlugBooks gave us the following examples of great deals:
University of Calgary – Finance 467: (Bookstore: $249 new / $187 used. SlugBooks options: ~$27)
University of Winnipeg – Chemistry 2103: (Bookstore: $290 new / $218 used. SlugBooks options: ~$90)
University of British Columbia – Philosophy 435A: (Bookstore: $193 new / $144 used. SlugBooks options: ~$55)
We figured SlugBooks probably handpicked these examples, so we went looking ourselves. My girlfriend needs An Introduction to Brain and Behaviour, 4th edition. Unfortunately, SlugBooks only has the 3rd edition.
I, meanwhile, need Modern Operating Systems, 3rd edition. The University of Toronto Bookstore has it for $201.60 CAD ($205 USD). SlugBooks lists it for $175.20 ($178.16) and then points me to Amazon and BookMob to get the physical book for $125 ($127.11), the digital version for $70 ($71.18), and then even lower for used versions. Not bad.
I searched for a ton of books my friends needed and overall I can say that SlugBooks is a step in the right direction. It’s not perfect, but it certainly speeds up the process of the textbook hunt that university students go through twice a year.
Image credit: Creatas