Many students use the campus bookstore, but some say they would much prefer to spending their money getting their textbooks online with sites like Amazon rather than waiting on long lines in the basement of the Babylon Student Center.
“I wait on the long, brutal line, go up to the cashier and tell them what I want,” said Sarah Hiner, a 21-year-old second-year RTV major from Selden. “The most difficult part is figuring out which books you can rent and which ones you can buy. The experience going there is unsatisfying and the definition of time-consuming.”
Hiner said she bought books from Amazon because it was easier and the prices were lower than at Suffolk’s bookstore.
Justin McCall, a 21-year-old liberal arts major from Patchogue, had a similar take.
“Well, I’ve had two experiences with ordering books either online, picking up, or ordering in person and picking up,” he said, “Both of those experiences have not been pleasant whatsoever. When you order online and pick up in person, they require the receipt, the email confirming the order and your ID. This process just makes the lines long and very time consuming.”
In a poll posted on the Suffolk Sentinel’s Twitter account that asked, “Do you prefer purchasing books at Suffolk’s Ammerman bookstore or on Amazon?,” out of 26 votes, 77% said they preferred Amazon over 23% who preferred the bookstore.
McCall said he had no issues purchasing textbooks off of Amazon because he had no patience to wait in the long lines at the bookstore.
“Sometimes at the SCCC bookstore, you would have to go back multiple times for different books that were ordered, whereas with Amazon everything gets shipped right to your door, which is very convenient.”
McCall said he’s found “the same exact books on Amazon for the discounted price or even half the prices they are charging at Suffolk.”
The bookstore declined to provide statistics on sales over time to get a picture of how it has stacked up against online competitors over time. A representative said the information was confidential.
Photo: An overlook on the Suffolk’s Ammerman Bookstore, downstairs in the Babylon Student Center (Suffolk Sentinel/Jacqueline Santorelli)