Renting from TextbookUnderground is easy because of the bare-bones website. This rental company only offers one rental period, which makes it tricky if you need to rent a textbook for a short-term situation like a block class. However, the multiple shipping options and ability to overnight a textbook makes this service good for last-minute textbook purchases.
If you decide to buy the textbook after you’ve already rented it, you can use your online account to pay the difference between the rental and used-book price. And if you have other textbooks that you’re trying to sell, you can enter the ISBN numbers on TextbookUnderground’s website and get a quote immediately.
When we ordered our test book from this rental company, it came in a bubble-wrap envelope with a receipt and a small card with instructions for returning the book. Though the receipt listed the due date – something other companies’ receipts lacked – the rental return information required us to provide our own box. Though some people have a lot of cardboard boxes lying around, we appreciated companies that sent their books in boxes that could be used for returns.
This company only offers rentals for physical textbooks, no eTextbook rentals or sales. If you want a digital version of your textbook you’ll have to use another service, like Amazon or Barnes & Noble. Another downside is that there’s no free shipping offered for large orders.
If you have problems with your order, you can call TextbookUnderground and get help from customer service agents. You can also email this company or search online through the FAQs.
This company states in its FAQs that you can write notes in the margins of your rental books and highlight content as well. However, if you highlight over 20 percent of the content in a rental book you’ll be required to pay for the full price of a used book, so it’s important to be careful how much you take notes in your book.
Though TextbookUnderground offers multiple options for shipping and will even overnight a book to you, the lack of eTextbooks and the inflexible rental terms make this one of our least-favorite college textbook rental companies.