Cheap books with free delivery: here are the online bookstores to visit, Lifestyle News

Reading is a hobby that many, myself included, have regained due to the new free time we now have thanks to the restrictions of Covid-19.

There is nothing like a lazy afternoon spent on the sofa with iced coffee and a good paperback book to “escape” reality.

But like everything in Singapore, reading can be an expensive hobby to maintain.

Just take a look at the Recommended Retail Price (RRP) printed on the back of most book covers and you can see we’re paying double or triple the price. I understand that bookstores will have to take into account fluctuations in exchange rates and international logistics costs, but why is a book priced at US $ 8.99 (S $ 11.90) sold for $ 25 + in Singapore? That’s more than double the recommended retail price!

To put it in perspective, if you go through one book a week, that’s $ 100 more per month and $ 1,200 per year.

So if you’re like me and have a long list of books you want but don’t want to break the bank buying them, these are the best online bookstores that offer discounts and free shipping.


Let’s start with the grandfather of all online bookstores, Amazon.

Amazon not only offers fast delivery and a wide variety of books at competitive prices, but also a ton of format and editing options. By this we mean, depending on the title, that you have the option of choosing a hardcover (new and used), paperback (new and used), audiobook, e-book, and even cassette tape. !

Note: Not all books listed are sold and shipped by Amazon, so there may be additional shipping charges or restrictions. Always check the fine print before pressing the “Buy Now” button.

Amazon delivery costs:

  • Amazon Prime members: free one-day delivery
  • Non-members: One-day delivery is charged $ 2.99 per order, Standard delivery is free for orders over $ 40

Amazon delivery time: One to three working days

Book deposit

This list would not be complete without Book Depository.

One of the best-known international online bookstores, Book Depository offers a wide range of books for adults and children in a variety of languages ​​(French, German, Polish, Italian, Finnish and Spanish) at affordable prices.

How much will you save? Honestly, it depends on the title of the book, hardcover or paperback, and how popular it is. I did a quick comparison and here’s what I found:

Book title and author Book deposit Retail bookstore with an online presence Price difference
Think again by Adam Grant $ 25.41 $ 30.90 $ 5.49
The Midnight Library by Matt Haig $ 15.52 $ 18.95 $ 3.43
The subtle art of not giving a fuck by Mark Manson $ 20.41 $ 33.32 $ 12.91

Based on the table above, the prices here are about 15% cheaper than a well-known retail bookstore in Singapore, and you get free shipping on all orders. However, the only downside is its long waiting time of 10 to 15 working days, so remember to plan ahead!

Pro tip: When browsing Book Depository, always log in and add your pre-selected books to the cart, even if you don’t intend to buy them that day. When you’ve left books in your cart long enough (around one to three months), Book Depository will encourage you to purchase them with a brilliant 10% promo code sent straight to your inbox. #ShoppingHack

Delivery costs Book deposit: Free delivery for all orders Delivery time Book deposit: 10 to 15 working days

Open trolley

Think of OpenTrolley as a Singapore-based book custodian, but with shorter delivery times. It offers thousands of books ranging from fantasy to fiction, computers to history and more. The prices are competitive and there is always a promotion or sale going on. This month they are offering an 18% discount on books sitewide.

That said, OpenTrolley is not a user-friendly site for the days when you are just window shopping. Make no mistake, they have an extremely clean website, with a prominent search bar at the top, and relatively easy to navigate. However, their homepage is so clean that there is very little to use and unless you have a rough idea of ​​what you’re looking for, window shopping will require you to take a few steps.

OpenTrolley delivery costs:

  • Free shipping for orders over $ 70 and flat rate of $ 4.90 for orders under $ 35
  • Free collection of blue lockers

OpenTrolley delivery time: 5 to 8 working days

ALSO READ: The best online bookstores with delivery in Singapore

Fish pond

Fishpond has a good selection of books, but not all are affordable. I did a quick check: some books are 10-40% more expensive than other sites on this list. I recommend that you factor in the shipping costs and do a little research before clicking the “Buy Now” button or waiting for a sitewide sale.

Besides books, Fishpond also offers a wide variety of toys, housewares, board games, pet supplies, cooking utensils, and beauty products.

Delivery costs in the pond: Free delivery for all orders Delivery time in the pond: 7 to 10 working days

Better World Books

If a book exists, there’s a good chance Better World Books is wearing it – unless it’s a first edition classic, of course.

What sets them apart? Better World Books not only offers new books, but also a wide range of used books and textbooks at greatly reduced prices.

Prices for used books start at just US $ 7 (S $ 9.30), and you’ll get additional discounts if you buy four or more books. Used textbooks, on the other hand, are sold for up to 90% off the recommended retail price.

Better World Books delivery costs: Free delivery on all orders Better World Books delivery time: 10 to 21 working days

ALSO READ: Best Bookstores in Singapore: Independent Book Heaven for Page Turners

Goguru by Times Bookstore

One of Singapore’s most beloved bookstores has had a makeover and is now live!

Goguru by Times Bookstore is your one-stop-shop for books (including appraisal books), toys, and stationery. The prices are reasonable as there is always a promotion or sale going on, and you don’t even have to be a member to take advantage of these discounts (unlike a certain bookstore located in Ngee Ann City).

Plus, it’s one of the few local online bookstores to offer as many children’s books as it does adult books. Parents, take note!

Goguru by Times Bookstore delivery costs:

  • Members: Free shipping for orders over $ 35 and flat rate of $ 3.99 for orders under $ 35
  • Non-members: Shipping starts from $ 5 for orders under 4 kg to $ 18 for orders over 30 kg

Goguru by Times Bookstore delivery time: 5 working days

Other Ways to Get Cheap Books

If you don’t mind used books, here are some other ways to get books for less.

Buy on Carousell

You may have heard of many horror stories involving Carousell, but there are also gems to be found, if you have the patience to sift through the hundreds of ads.

Prices are competitive and you can often find new or used books in pristine condition for less than half the retail price.

Visit a second-hand bookstore


You have free time ? Go shopping at a second-hand bookstore.

By buying from second-hand bookstores, you not only save money, but also help a small business (much needed, especially during a time like this) and do your part for the environment. Win-win situation.

Buy used and trade-in books on Thryft

Don’t have time to visit a second-hand bookstore? Head to Thryft. This is an online second-hand bookstore based in sunny Singapore. You might not find many of the latest titles here (unless you’re really lucky), but the prices are definitely affordable – they even have an entire section for books under $ 5.

As a second-hand bookstore, you have the option of exchanging books that you don’t read anymore but can’t bear to throw away. To do this, simply submit a pickup request, choose a date and a Thryft representative will pick them up from your home.

These books would then be verified and the credits (which can be used to offset your next Thryft purchase) would be deposited into your account within the next few days. No administrative or book transport costs required.

This article first appeared in

About Joey J. Hott

Check Also

Hit the books: How much this insurance watch discount could really cost you

MMachine learning systems have for years outperformed their human counterparts in everything from Go to …