Can I sell back my textbooks to the UBC Bookstore? How does the textbook buyback program work?

Yes – the UBC Bookstore will buy your books back from you! Students can sell their used textbooks back in-store during our textbook buyback period at the beginning/end of each term. Our next buyback period for the fall 2024/25 term is from August 19th to September 14th.

How do I find out if my book is being bought back? How much will I get for my book?
You can check if we’re currently accepting a particular book as well as the sellback price by entering the ISBN on our Buyback Search page. We recommend checking the sellback price online prior to bringing in your books to avoid any disappointment!

If your textbook is being used for a UBC course this term, you will be offered up to 50% of the new retail price for your book. We also work with a wholesale partner to allow us to take back a larger selection of books beyond what is currently being bought back for UBC. If your book is bought by our wholesale partner, you will receive the value established by them for the North American marketplace.

What course materials can I sell back?
Whether or not we are able to buy a textbook back is determined by current demand for it as well as the condition of the book. We can only accept textbooks in good, reusable, legible condition, with no water damage, stains, or torn/missing covers or pages. Normal wear with some markings/notes and highlighting is okay, provided that it is not excessive and none of the print is obscured. We are unfortunately unable to accept loose-leaf textbooks or books that come packaged with a required access code or online component as these cannot be resold.

Are there any items you don’t accept?
While we’d love to give each and every used book some new life, unfortunately not every item can be resold and there are a number of reasons a book might not be eligible for buyback.

Some common reasons we might not be able to buy a book:

  • It is not being used for the upcoming semester at UBC or by one of our partners
  • There isn’t currently enough demand for your title or we have already reached our supply quota for it
  • It has been replaced by a newer edition
  • It is a loose-leaf (binder ready) or unbound coursepack format
  • It is a digital-only material (eText or access code)
  • The book came with a required access code component that has already been used/redeemed (access codes are normally offered in a single subscription format which expires after a set time period, so they cannot be registered more than once)
  • Liquid damage, stains, damage to the spine or cover, torn/missing pages, or significant wear that impedes the books legibility, such as excessive highlighting or notes that obscure the text
  • The book is incomplete or missing required components/materials that it originally came with (ex: study guides/workbooks)

How does the in-store buyback work?
You can sell back your textbooks in-store at both our Vancouver and Okanagan campus locations by bringing the books you’d like to sell to our front cashiers. Buybacks can be done anytime during our opening hours during the start of term buyback period. Once we’ve confirmed that your books are eligible, the value will be returned to a debit or credit card of your choosing.
Pro tip! While you can check the buyback price in-store, we recommend using our handy Buyback Search in advance to save yourself any unnecessary trips (and arm workouts!).

Can I sell back my textbooks year round?
Afraid not, folks! To allow us to anticipate demand and ensure that we are able to offer as many options as possible to students at the start of term, our buyback program isn’t available year round. Textbooks can only be sold back to us during our special buyback dates at the beginning of each term, so please plan accordingly! Our next buyback period will be from August 19th to September 14th.