Oh, I’m so excited to share today’s post with you! You see, I’m an avid reader but I also am a frugal reader who loves to save money. That’s why when I discovered how to get free or cheap Audible books, I knew I couldn’t keep this secret to myself!
For as long as I can remember, I have always loved curling up with a good book to read. Now that I’m a mom of two little ones, I’m not reading the 100 books each year that I used to read (Yes, I am fast reader, too) but I am still reading quite a bit. What’s most important is that I am reading to and with my children because I want to instill a love of reading in them. Since my almost 3 year old will happily sit for 30 minutes or more, listening to me read one book after another, I think we’re off to a good start.
Since my time for reading is more limited now, I have learned to read in all my fringe hours. I have thoroughly embraced the free Kindle app on my phone and love that I can pick up my book whenever I have a couple spare minutes. (You can read more about how to read Kindle books for free here to get this app set up for yourself.)
I also have learned to enjoy listening to audio books. While my main source of audio books used to come from the library, I have since discovered several ways to get free or cheap Audible books. I’m building up quite the free audio library and I wanted to share these tips and tricks with you.
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You see, as a former early childhood teacher, I accumulated over a thousand picture books in my decade teaching. I have been in the process of sorting through them, organizing them and making sure I keep the best quality ones that the children and I both enjoy reading. (I firmly believe that if you don’t enjoy reading it, your child won’t either. Just pick a different book!)
Now, I’m in the process of building up a library of classics, particularly those in audio book format so the kids and I can listen to books together as they grow older. I have chosen to use Audible as the format for building this library for a couple reasons.
First and most importantly, what I purchase at Audible now, stays in my account until I am ready to download it. Second, Audible is affiliated with Amazon so there are good deals to be found! And finally, I love that you can download the audio books in various formats or listen to them on the Audible app.
How do I get free audio books from Audible?
- Sign up for a free trial of Audible. Right now, when you sign up for a free 30 day trial you can get 2 free audio books from Audible!
- Choose your free books using your credits.
- Run the Amazon / Audible Matchmaker by clicking here. This link will search all the Kindle books you’ve ever purchased and show you what the price is for any Audible whispersync upgrades.
- Start watching for whispersync deals!
What is the best way to get audio book deals on Audible?
The best way to get free or cheap audio books from Audible is to watch for WhisperSync deals. Here’s what I mean. Amazon is turning many of their print books into companion books for Audible. That means, when you purchase a print book that is labeled whispersync , you’ll have the option to also buy the Audible book for a highly discounted price.
To get the best deals, you must purchase the Kindle book FIRST. This is important because not all Kindle books have an Audible upgrade available. After you purchase the Kindle book, you will see an option to add the Audible upgrade for a discounted price. If you choose not to purchase the Audible deal at that time, you can always run the Matchmaker search at a later time to add the Audible upgrade.
You do not have to have an Audible subscription to purchase these deals. You can still listen to the audio books through your account or on the Audible app. I still recommend signing up for the Audible trial to claim your 2 free audio books.
What are some free or cheap audio books available on Audible?
The deals change regularly. One of the best sites I have found for current Audible deals is the Read Aloud Revival. Sarah has an amazing podcast that I love but you can find the deals on her Read Aloud Revival Facebook page or Instagram feed. Here are some other examples of good deals on some whispersync books. Remember, purchase the Kindle book (even if it’s free) first so you can get the Audible discounted deal.
Note: Amazon prices may vary but here as of February 2017, these are some of the best whispersync deals on classics.
- The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (Kindle $0 – Audible $0.99 – Read by Anne Hathaway)
- The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (Kindle $0 – Audible $0.99)
- The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (Kindle $0.99 – Audible $2.49)
- Peter Pan (Kindle $0.99 – Audible $4.49)
- Alice in Wonderland (Kindle $0.99 – Audible $2.99)
- Emma (Kindle $0.99 – Audible $0.99)
- A Christmas Carol (Kindle $0.90 – Audible $1.99)
- A Little Princess (Kindle $0.99 – Audible $1.99)
- The Secret Garden (Kindle $0 – Audible $2.99)
- The Jungle Book (Kindle $0.99 – Audible $0.95)
- Little Women (Kindle $0 – Audible $0.99)
- The Wind in the Willows (Kindle $0.99 – Audible $2.95)
- Pollyanna (Kindle $0 – Audible $0.99)
- Heidi – (Kindle $0.99 – Audible $2.99)
What are other good audio books to add to my collection?
I would start by running the Amazon / Audible matchmaker – especially if you have been purchasing Kindle books for awhile now. You may discover some whispersync deals on books that you haven’t yet read and would like to read.
I also recommend using one (if not both) of your free credits to get a book just for you and just because. If you need a recommendation, here are 20 of my favorite books in a variety of genres.
After that, here are some other great audio books to add to your collection.
- Anne of Green Gables (Kindle $1.99 – Audible $1.99 – Read by Rachel McAdams)
- Little House in the Big Woods (Kindle $4.99 – Audible $7.34)
- The entire Ramona series (Audible $29.99 – or 1 credit! A great use of 1 credit!)
- Winnie the Pooh (Audible $3.95)
- The complete Peter Rabbit series (Audible $0.95)
What else do I need to know about Audible?
It’s important to make good use of your credits! For example, if I have a free credit, I would much rather use it on an audio book that normally costs $29.99 rather than a $3.95 one. Use your credits on the more pricey audio books.
Once you purchase an Audible book, it stays in your account forever. Whether you are paying for an account or not, your audio books are always yours. You can listen to them at any time from your computer or on the Audible app.
You do not need an Audible subscription to take advantage of Audible deals. Yes, I still recommend you sign up for the free trial because you can get two free audio books to start your collection. After that, it’s easy to cancel your account and purchase the whispersync deals whenever you notice a good one.
Start a wish list in Audible. Make a list of audio books you would like to add to your listening library. That way, whenever a credit deal comes along you can easily select a new audio book for free.
Watch for free credit deals! Periodically, Living Social will have deals for free audible credits. I have done this one several different times, added new books to my library and then canceled my account…until the next deal rolls around.
If you’re looking for a particular audio book, try searching in the kindle store for that title and add whispersync after it. Then, look at the Kindle price and where it says “Add Audible for…”. This will help you find more good audible deals, particularly if you don’t have credits to use at the moment.
This how I’m building a frugal Audible library of audio books! Are you as excited as I am? This could be a total game changer for family read aloud time and homeschooling families! Feel free to share with those you now who would love to get free or cheap Audible books. And tell me, have you used Audible before? What audio books are your favorites?