How to Host a Book Swap/Exchange

Hip2Save may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you via trusted partners and affiliate links in this post. Prices and availability are accurate as of time posted. Read our full disclosure policy here.

Host a Book Swap by

Hosting a Book Swap/Exchange is a wonderful and easy way to get kids excited about reading and to recycle those unused books taking up space around your home! Just encourage your participants to bring a book so they can take a book in return. This idea can be adapted for an event at school, church, scouts, and even makes a fun party theme!

Before Book Swap/Exchange

Decide which types of books and grade level books you will accept.
Also consider whether you’ll include age-appropriate magazines, DVDs and video games. Encourage participants to bring as many books as they like – the more books, then the better the selection for all.
Give a Book! Get a Book! Book Swap Invitation
Send out an invitation including all the details or post a flyer for your book swap event.
Consider posting as a Facebook event or paperless Evite. Use our FREE Invite template image here.

During Book Swap/Exchange

First, you’ll need to collect all the books.

Give everyone a ticket for each book they donate so they can come back and “shop” later.
You may even consider giving 2 tickets for higher priced items like DVDs. Buy rolls of carnival style tickets online or at party supply stores.

Organize and display books on tables.
This is where parent volunteers come in handy! Placement of the table is also important – set up tables against a wall to make it easier to prop books up so they are facing outward.

Bring back all the participants so they can “shop”!
Watch as they get excited for “new” books! Even reluctant readers get enthusiastic.
Kids Book Exchange Idea

After Book Swap/Exchange

Consider donating leftovers to a school library, thrift store or charity.

On a personal note, I helped with this event at my child’s school last year and it was so much fun! The kids love it and are so happy to choose new-to-them books. I also saw some wonderful acts of kindness, as kids were choosing some books for their siblings, and even giving tickets to friends who forgot to bring books to participate that day. πŸ™‚

Written by Lina for Hip2Save. Lina is a proud mom of 2 small kids who loves photography, all holidays, cooking, thrift store makeovers, bargain shopping, and DIY makeovers. Her goal is to create a beautiful life and stylish home on a dime!

Join The Discussion

Comments 12

  1. betsy

    Such a great idea! I’ve heard of clothing swaps and am familiar with the “Little Libraries,” but not a book swap. Thanks!

    • Collin (Mrs. Hip)

      You’re welcome πŸ˜€

  2. Nell

    Love this! Will try to implement this in our community soon!

    • Collin (Mrs. Hip)


  3. Urvi

    A friend did this for kiddos 5th birthday. Mine was thrilled to share her favorite books with him and bring his favorites home.
    Brilliant idea for a “giftless” bday party. Everyone walked away hugging a “new to me” book.

    • Collin (Mrs. Hip)

      Aww, thanks for sharing! πŸ˜‰

  4. quira628

    I love this idea thank you! I will try this in my classroom. I work with kids 0-3. Its a great way to involve parents and children.

    • Collin (Mrs. Hip)

      You are so welcome! πŸ˜€

  5. ErinM

    I would love for someone to host an Usborne Books party with me!! Sooo many new and awesome titles for you to share with your mommy friends and family. Get your holiday shopping done for FREE! Contact me at

  6. Jennifer Anderson

    Thank you! We are hosting a book swap at our Literacy Night next week! I am in charge of book swap! Thank you for posting this!

  7. Casey

    Once you give out the tickets, is it a 1:1 swap In choosing their books when shopping?

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Yes that’s how we did it.πŸ‘

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

It's not your Grandma's coupon site!

Sign up for a Hip2Save account (it's free) to access all of the awesome features!

Forgot Password?

Don't have an account? Register

Forgot Password

Don't have an account? Register

Become a Hip2Save Insider

Don't Miss Out! Join our large community of insiders - it's totally free! Once you join, you'll be able to save & share your favorite deals, rate posts and recipes and add items to your HipList and Cookbook! What are ya waiting for?!

Already have an account? Login

Thank you for rating!

Would you also like to leave us a comment?