The MBA Diary

Getting books and calculator for school


The school emailed me the list of books and the calculator that I require before the term begins — things I’ve to have before the term commences.

I have several options:

  • Get the books and calculator online or offline
  • Get used books and calculators from the senior students (the school facilitates this!)


There are at least 5 book that I need for this term. Ideally I want new books, but I don’t like the idea of spending so much.

Buying used books means paying lower prices than retail, the prices I’ll be paying for some of the books at Kinokuniya will be lower because of the discount I’m currently entitled to at the bookstore.

Trying to get the most out of the least, I prepared a spreadsheet listing all the books I require. On the columns beside it, are the prices of the books on auction, against prices of the books at Kinokinuya post discount. From there I could tell and listed down the books that I needed to reserve from the seniors and the books I that I needed to purchase at Kinokuniya.

So. I reserved the 2 used books, described like new and confirmed it with the senior student rep, because it’s cheaper. Then over the weekend, I went to Kinokuniya to get 4 more books (looking for them was a challenge though, props to the customer service for promptly finding the books for me). In total I spent around RM350 for the books, when in fact they cost RM750 full price!

That’s what you get when you diversify your options.



I’m supposed to get a calculator for school, specifically, for the finance courses I’ll be taking. The school recommends HP 12C by Hewlett Packard, as it has the functions for PV, NPV, IRR etc.

Reza asked if it’s okay for me to use the calculators I have explained, but I explained to him that finance calculators are of a different breed. The functions are different than the scientific or statistic calculators that we’re used to.

Like the text books, there were 5 used HP 12c calculators up for sale from the senior students, all reserved within days. So I had to look for it on my own.

The best marketplace is still eBay, where plenty of HP 12c calculators being auctioned. The challenge was to find something that’s still relatively new and at a good price. I won a like new HP 12c for 1/2 the retail price. Phew!

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1 Comment

  • Avatar
    October 7, 2015 at 5:55 PM

    your bargaining skill fuhh! so rajin to do research and all…

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