How to buy secondhand books in Korea

Sooin Moon

Just starting a new semester in Korea? Are your major classes forcing you to buy books that you know that you’ll only read it once and probably never look at again? And if you decide to buy all your required books, are they too expensive that it will probably cost you that 3-day-trip to Jeju that you’ve planned months ago?

Well, then, I present you secondhand books stores in Korea.

  1. Aladin – (

Aladin is definitely one of the best and biggest secondhand book stores you can find in Korea. It is best to check out the website and see if what you are looking for is available in-stores or online. If you have to buy offline, then the site tellls you which store you will be able to buy the book from. From my experience, Aladin had the best system, customer service and accessibility. If you are trying to just look around while buying textbooks, then I strongly recommend the ones in Gangnam and Sinchon. Becase they are located near big Korean universities, they have a higher chance of having books for college students.

You can also sell books. So if you want to get some pocket money for the upcoming vacation, you can always check it out. However, since they have almost every type of book, you might find it hard to earn a lot of money. Aladin will only give you a small amount of money for the books. Still, they do accept more genres and more foreign books than other stores, so it is a safe bet.

  1. Yes24 – (다운로드 (2)

This is a secondhand book store that’s part of one of the biggest online book shopping website in Korea, yes24. Everything is pretty similar to Aladin, but some parts vary. Unlike Aladin, yes24 will give you higher price if you have a good quality book, but will not accept some books that it thinks is not profitable. So, just like what I’ve mentioned above, it is best to check the website. Although it is in Korean, I’ve seen people using google translate and asking their friends who were good at Korean to help them. So, get your friends to help you in exchange for a cup of coffee because it can help you save way more money.

  1. Book JangTeo (Book Marketplace) – (

This is a platform specifically made for selling and buying used textbooks. It is why you can conveniently choose your University, so Hanyang University from the left column, and then search for your textbook, or you can just type your major in the top search bar. You can see the condition that the books are in, the price, and number in-stock.

This is a very good website, but it can be quite tricky for you to use. First, the quality is not actually verified by anyone except the seller, so you will have to ask the seller and hope for the best. Second, the website is only a intermediate for the trade, hence your trade is not exactly guaranteed by anyone, meaning the person you were trading with, can just run away with the money. Third, I don’t really like face to face meetings as they can be quite dangerous in so many ways. Unless you have a really good bargaining skills, it might be hard to get a good deal.

However, despite all the things mentioned above, this website is definitely cheaper, and easy to access. I recommend using, if you are short on your budget.

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