Updates during COVID-19
Harvard Book Store

Updates on Hours & Services

Used Books Basement to Temporarily Close through the End of Year

As of Saturday, October 10, we'll temporarily be closing our used book and remainder basement to shoppers for 2020. We'll be transforming this space into socially distanced work stations for packing up your holiday packages as we work to safely and swiftly process your harvard.com orders. The bargain basement will re-open to shoppers in early 2021, when we expect to resume buying back used books.

Apologies to shoppers of used books! Thank you for your understanding. Updated October, 2020.

Harvard Book Store Is Open to Shoppers

Updated Hours! Our current shopping hours are Tuesday through Sunday, 11AM to 6PM. Capacity is limited. We are now closed on Mondays instead of Sundays. (Updated August 25th, 2020.)

Guidelines for Visitors:

  • Face coverings required of all staff and visitors inside. Masks must cover nose and mouth.

  • Maintain social distancing of 6 feet from others during your visit.

  • Contactless / cashless payments are strongly encouraged.

  • Reusable bag use not permitted, per Massachusetts guidelines. The Cambridge bag fee is temporarily suspended. 

  • No dogs (except service animals) permitted in the store at this time. (Sorry, pups.)

  • To minimize the number of people in the bookstore, paid "in-store pickups" have been converted to curbside pickup. Follow curbside pickup guidelines.

  • Please check in with our door attendant when you enter the store. If the store is at capacity, you'll be asked to join our socially distanced line outside.

  • For the time being we are not buying back used books. Sign up to be notified when buyback resumes.

  • No gift-wrapping for the time being.

  • Please note that hours and guidelines are subject to updates. Check our policy signs when you visit.

Keeping Everyone Safe at Harvard Book Store:

  • Hand sanitizer is available when you enter, check out, and exit.

  • Countertop protective shields are in place at checkout and information desk.

  • High touch surfaces are regularly cleaned and sanitized throughout the day.

  • Limited capacity in the store, particularly the used book basement.

  • Signage reminding all to wear face masks and maintain social distance.

  • Seating has been removed from the sales floor.

  • Adherence to recommended guidelines from the CDC, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH), the City of Cambridge, and the Cambridge Public Health Department (CPHD).

For those who prefer contactless book buying, we will continue curbside pickup and mail-out services.

We deeply appreciate your continued support, so thank you!

A Note on Processing Time for HARVARD.COM Orders

Due to the high volume of sales via harvard.com at this time, please allow at least 1–3 days for processing (including in-stock titles), and please note that books that are not in stock will have variable arrival times from the publisher.

We will notify you if any of your requested titles are expected to take longer than two weeks to arrive. Even for backordered titles going into reprints, we recommend placing an order for your desired title to ensure you can get the book you want as soon as it's available.

We are grateful for the support our community is showing by purchasing books through an independent bookstore. Our intrepid crew of booksellers is gathering, ordering, and packing customer orders as speedily as possible while following safety protocols during the age of COVID-19. Thank you for your patience and understanding! Your patronage supports an independent bookstore and our staff at a difficult time—and helps ensure the future of a landmark, independent bookstore.

A Safe Return to Work 

At Harvard Book Store we are following local, state, and CDC–recommended guidelines to ensure the health and safety of our staff, customers, and community—through routine cleaning, requiring mask-use in the bookstore, social distancing, and employee monitoring of symptoms for COVID-19. 

Curbside Pickup Services Have Resumed 

Updated June 10, 2020

We have resumed curbside pickup services at Harvard Book Store. Place your order and complete your transaction at harvard.com. When checking out, choose “curbside pickup” as the delivery method.

Please review our curbside pickup instructions, checklist, and FAQ at harvard.com/about/curbside_pickup before your visit.

Mailout Services Resumed at HARVARD.COM

The shipping of books, mugs, tote bags, and apparel has resumed, here on harvard.com! Your patronage at harvard.com is the best and most direct way to support us! THANK YOU!!

  • We can ship throughout the United States. Learn more at harvard.com/about/shipping(Updated June 1, 2020)
  • We have resumed print-on-demand services at Harvard Book Store and harvard.com. Learn more about Custom Printing and Books On Demand. (Updated June 5, 2020)
  • If you have questions about an order placed before April 2 (via harvard.com) or after June 1, our staff is available to answer questions by email (webteam@harvard.com).
  • If you have questions about an order placed between April 2 and May 31 (via Bookshop.org), Bookshop has a dedicated customer support team who can help. Email them at info@bookshop.org.

The following services remain paused:

  • Used book buyback will be suspended during this time, until further notice.

Thank you for your purchases. Keep reading, stay healthy, and be well.

Support Harvard Book Store

Here are just a few of the ways you can support your local bookstore during some challenging and uncertain times. 

“Up Late” Shirt Design

Now available as a hoodie! Order deadline is Nov 6th! This fundraiser supports the future of Harvard Book Store.

Learn More »


We're experiencing an enormous and unprecedented order volume at this time. Thanks for your patience and understanding.

Learn More »

New This Week

Shop this week's new arrivals, updated every Tuesday.

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