A known fact about the UBC Bookstore is that its prices are bigger than anything else on campus. Whispers of lower prices and better products in the dark underbelly of the retail community have always been discounted as rumours, but they aren’t. Before they’re revealed, remember that many of the items listed are the same product with the difference being a UBC logo. Whether that’s influential enough to make people spend the difference depends completely on the consumer, UBC’s brainwashing and nothing else.
If the Bookstore is viewed simply as a store that sells books, it is way overpriced. To use an example, a soft cover edition of the classic Great Expectations can be found at an Indigo or Chapters for a moderate $5.50. At the Bookstore, you can go ahead and hike that price up to a whopping $19.95. And it doesn’t even come with the goddamn UBC logo.
Ah yes, the famous UBC shooters that allow students to justify paying an exorbitant amount of money so they can see their school listed above SFU and UVic on a glorified shot glass. The glass costs a hefty $7.95. Well, listen up — hop on down to Bed, Bath and Beyond and pick up a six pack of shooters for $13.99. This means that each glass is just $2.33. If that sweet, sweet UBC logo is so desperately needed, then buy a Sharpie, draw it on one and sell the remaining five for a profit — just make sure not to buy the Sharpie from the Bookstore either…
The biggest problem with the pens in the UBC Bookstore is that almost none of them come in packs. While the cheapest pen at the Bookstore is still $1.20, you can get a 60-pack of pens at Staples for just $7.22 — that’s 12 cents per pen! And you’ll never have to go pen shopping again because 60 pens is just excessive.
Looking at cotton/polyester makes only, they range from about $21.95 to $34.95. Perhaps the most egregious example of overpricing since you can get five t-shirts from Walmart for $3. Hell, even an Aritzia shirt cost about $30. That’s right, you can find a cheaper shirt at a store known almost exclusively for being overpriced. But here’s the real kicker — remember that whole “paying for the logo” bit up at the beginning? Well, you can get custom t-shirts made for around $15, which means that you can custom make a UBC t-shirt for cheaper than it is to buy.
Those are perhaps the worst cases of the largest differences in price with some very common items. Long story short — if the bookstore sells it, try to find it somewhere else first.