Amazon Alternatives

July 27, 2014 Tips & Tricks 1

With the Hachatte / Amazon feud still going strong, some readers are looking for alternatives to Amazon. I like to support local bookstores such as Page One or Bookworks. If you’re looking to try an online retailer, here are some of the places I’ve ordered from in the past and my thoughts about them.

Hastings
I love Hastings! They have a mix of used / new titles and carry dvds, cds, and novelty items in addition to books. As far as shipping goes, you can get deals for free shipping or flat rate, but overall the cost of shipping isn’t bad. What I love about Hastings is how fast receiving orders are. In my experience, let’s say I place an order on Saturday night-usually by Sunday it’s been processed and shipped and depending on the location of where it was shipped from I can have my order by Tuesday and the latest Thursday.
Paypal accepted: Yes, but not for pre-orders

Powell’s
I just placed my first order last week for one of their book signing events next week. Overall, a bit disappointed that I didn’t know Hastings had a signed copy (plus it was $2 cheaper there) and haven’t tried to cancel the order. In any event, shipping was free for orders over $50 and arrive anywhere from 4 to 9 days (or maybe processed) so if time is of the essence keep this in mind. Otherwise shipping is like $4. I’ll know sometime in early August how quickly I received the order. If you’re in the Portland area, you can always pick up online orders.
Paypal accepted: Yes, but not for pre-orders.

Books-A-Million
Gah…I used them for the first time earlier this month for the signed copy of Veronica Roth’s Four. I missed out on the signed edition at Barnes & Noble and when I heard Books-A-Million had a copy, I placed an order. I was fairly happy to see that they shipped Four a few days before the release, but then it was stuck in shipping limbo for a week and half AFTER the book’s release. Then the anticipated delivery date came and went and waited a few more days more for it to arrive. I paid for shipping and was disappointed at this outcome. Will I order from them again? Probably not.
Paypal accepted: Yes for pre-orders.

The Book Depository
Ah, I love TBD! It’s easy to use especially if placing an order for international delivery. I also like them because shipping is free worldwide. In terms of receiving an order, it takes something like 7 to 14 days for books to be received in the US. In my experience, as long as they have a book in stock, I can anticipate a book’s arrival withing 7 days of it shipping and it usually ships about 2-4 days after placing an order (someone correct me if I’m wrong. I haven’t ordered from them since last year).
Paypal accepted: Yes, but typically you can only use it for shipping orders within the same country of your location due to a paypal quirk.

ETA: I forgot to mention that TBD is owned by Amazon. I included them because you can still pre-order Hachette titles there whereas at Amazon you can’t.

What are some of your favorite shops?

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