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Oh, The Places You'll Go: Gray's College Bookstore

UNC Charlotte’s worst-kept secret allows students to get required textbooks for a fraction of the cost.

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Gray's College Bookstore, a used textbook source for students at UNC Charlotte.

Gray's College Bookstore, a used textbook source for students at UNC Charlotte.

Ye Olde College Bookstore

“Don’t go to the campus bookstore” is the most universal piece of advice that you will get on a college campus. Although the University of North Carolina at Charlotte bookstore is run by Barnes and Noble, a company that offers used books online for less than list price, their stores on college campus tend to be too expensive for students.

The second most common piece of advice? Using Gray’s College Bookstore. Although they are still more expensive than using Amazon or other online distributors, Gray’s allows you to buy your textbooks for less than at the bookstore on campus while eliminating the worry about your book not arriving before you need it.

A Love Affair

“I go there all of the time,” says Vanessa Martinez, a senior Communications major at UNC Charlotte. “It would be crazy to pay full price for textbooks when you have a cheaper option so close to school.”

Martinez is not the only student who chooses to shop at Gray's instead of spending hundreds of dollars for brand new textbooks that you can't return if you open the wrapper after purchase.

To compete with the campus bookstore, Gray's even has an apparel section that rivals the selection available from the official source. It's no wonder that the lines can get long the first week of classes, the savings alone are worth it.

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