As student fees rise and rise and part-time jobs pay out less and less - if you're lucky enough to have one at all, perhaps Amazon's new student textbook rental service will have some appeal?
It's already quite popular for university students to buy second-hand books as, though we like to think our universities are on the bleeding edge of development, often is the case that textbooks will remain the same for decades, perhaps with minor revisions along the way, creating a large second, third, fourth-hand and so on market for these hand-me-down texts.
Rather than leave profit from these sales to auction sites, such as eBay, Amazon has conjured up a per-semester rental service, which it claims can save students up to 70 per cent of the retail cost, with free delivery on orders over $25.
Questionably, Amazon could be harming sales of first-hand textbooks by offering this new service, though we suspect there will still be those who like their books fresh-off-the-press and, that Amazon must believe it will make proportionally more profit from its loan service.
As you may have gathered, our use of the dollar symbol represents the fact that this service is currently only offered in the US, though we suspect it may be quite welcome in the UK. Any interested students may wish to send an e-mail to Amazon and see if the process can't be sped along.