Everyone with a passion for literature knows exactly how expensive it can be to buy new books. Aside from the expense, buying new books is also not the most environmentally friendly pastime. The Guardian reported that a study “of the US book industry for a single year (2006) estimated that publishing consumed approximately 30 million trees and had a carbon footprint equivalent to 12.4 million metric tons of carbon dioxide”. Book thrifting, therefore, serves as a much more environmentally friendly, affordable way to buy books. Luckily for UP students, there are many places in Pretoria that offer a great selection of second-hand books. Here are some of the best places to thrift books in Pretoria:

Rutland Books
Rutland books, located on Soutpansberg Road. This store consists of 13 rooms “with over 60 000 books”, making it a book-lover’s paradise. According to the shop’s website, they “sell and on a selective basis, exchange and purchase second-hand books” and ”if [they] can’t use the books you don’t want, then [they] redistribute them to various charities”.

Charity Shops
Buying books from charity shops can be an excellent way to find books for great prices, while supporting a good cause in the process. Some charity shops in Pretoria with an incredible selection of books include the Princess Christian Homes Bookstore, the Sungardens or Centurion Hospice shops and the Tshwane SPCA.

Rainbow Books
Located in Hennopspark, this book shop offers a great selection of books, starting from as little as R2. They also have a selection of games, comic books, and even a “children’s room”. This store also has a great coffee shop, where one can find gourmet cakes, and a wide range of gourmet milkshakes.

Protea Boekwinkel
Protea Boekwinkel in Hatfield is less than a fiveminute walk away from the Hatfield campus. The store offers a selection of “[university] textbooks, general books, special orders, [second-hand] titles and much more”. Students can also sell their textbooks here if they are looking to earn a bit of money.

Hazel Food Market
The Hazel Food market is open every week from 8am to 2pm. This market offers an incredible selection of food, drinks and art vendors. The market is also a great place to go book thrifting. Those willing to spend a bit of time searching for books can find some great deals, while also experiencing a lively atmosphere and enjoying some delicious food.

While it may take a bit of time, book thrifting can be an incredibly rewarding way of finding books, and exploring all that Pretoria has to offer in the process.

Image: Kayla Thomas

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I’m Kirsten, a law student who loves writing, making spreadsheets and consuming an unhealthy amount of caffeine.
I love writing about student issues and current events.