Chennai Book Fair | 11 tips to ace your Book Fair visit | Diarytale

( On a phone conversation…)
Me – Should we write a blog about it?
Her – Of course, Yes! I am thinking the same.
Me – Ok. 2 Blog posts. Anything on mind? 
Her – Why don’t we write together? 
Me – What? (*Blanked out for a min*) Hmm. Let’s have fun then.
(Cut to now… Here we are writing our very first blog post together.)

Hey guys, hope you are all doing well. Recently, I Swathi, (DT-Reader’s Corner author) went to Book Fair in Chennai and had fun. So, in this blog post, we are going to share the experiences and fun we had during our visit there. Shall we roll to the topic?

A little intro about the Book Fair

For all the bookworms out there and others, BAPASI is conducting book fairs in Chennai every year. Chennai’s 45th book fair is conducted by The Book Sellers and Publishers Association of South India (BAPASI in short). It is happening on YMCA grounds, Nandanam. This year, the fair is from February 16 to March 6, which means you still have time to visit and enjoy. The timing is from 11 am to 8 pm. 

Various book publishers, bookstores all around Chennai will participate. More than 500 stalls will be there. So it is a long lane of bookstalls. You will see a lot of books in Tamil and English. From very old books to newly published copies, from 10% discounts to 50% off. Also, you will find some books stalls, especially for kids, and for competitive exams too. Sometimes, you may run into (in luck) some book authors. Famous newspapers and media publishers like The Hindu, Dinamalar, Vikatan will have their stalls. 

The entry ticket price is ₹10/- Which you can also buy online. For more details, check their website at this link.


Me and Swathi, along with our family, went to a book fair, a couple of days ago. Usually, we go to the book fair on weekends, which by the way will be very crowded, particularly in the afternoon. This book fair happens at the beginning of summer. So with high humidity, lots of sweat, and very little aeration, due to the crowds, also the long walks, we always end up getting tired at the end of the day. 

book fair
Chennai Book Fair

Best decision – Planned on a weekday!

But this time, we coincidentally planned on a weekday, which to our surprise, had no crowd. No people around us. Just us and the books. We are very relaxed throughout the time. 

After the temperature checks and getting the ₹10/- entry ticket, we started our hunts for books. In all the stalls, we got 10% discounts plus some other exciting offers too. 

book fair
No crowds on a weekday.

Amazing offers on Book Fair. 

First, we went to a second-hand stall. We browsed a bit and finalized on 3 big books. It was in a good condition too. There we got an amazing offer, 3 books for ₹500/- Similarly we got a good deal in another stall, where ₹100/- for each novel. 

Then we saw odyssey book stores, some other similar shops. The most exciting deal for me was, I got 2 hardcovers, Agatha Christie books for the price of one. (of course, it was buying one get one free) And no, it is not a second-hand copy. Surprising right? 

Agatha Christie Collections.

Overall – Pleasant experience.

Since there were no crowds, we took time browsing all the books, picking up what we wanted, and got amazing deals. We got almost over 10+ books ourselves. Overall we had a pleasant time there. If you are interested, please visit and share your experience with us. 

              So, that was our experience with years and years of visiting book fairs. If you want to create pleasant memories visiting a book fair, here we are helping you with simple tips to ensure before visiting a book fair.   


Book fairs are a kind of treasure hunt, in which we have to play the game with some principles to hunt the treasure. So, let’s dive into some of the primary and secondary tips that everyone should check out before going to a book fair.

  1. OOTD

Book fairs occur all around the seasons. Mostly, it will be located in an open space with temporary tents where it will be so hot with low aeration. So, it is always better to wear a light-colored cotton outfit that is comfortable. Also, wear untroubled footwear of your own choices.


 Since it will be hot there, you will feel thirsty. So, it is a fine choice to carry a small bottle, preferably a lightweight one in your backpack. 


  Carry a shoulder bag to avoid junking your hands with stuff. 


    Second-hand bookstalls are places where they sell used books mostly in good condition at half prices or even lower than that. These stalls can be identified very easily. There will be posters hanging outside the stalls, saying the offers like ‘pick 3 novels for 500 bucks, pick 1 for 100 bucks.’ The only tedious process is that we have to look for our treasure slowly into those big piles of books. 

book fair
Second-hand bookstall



  Firstly, write down the book names which you want to buy. It is the preliminary tip that I will suggest for anyone who asks me. Because we are going to witness the mass piles in the book fair that can easily distract us from different directions. Eventually, we will end without buying our favorites. So, it is always easy when we shortlist the titles.


      After curating the titles, cross-check the price of those titles on online shopping sites and add those to your cart. So, it helps in striking a great deal. Check the price before paying at the book fair because sometimes the prices in the online shopping platform will be less than here. Also, check the prices on the day you are going to the book fair for the reason that again prices online differ day today.


To save time and to buy more books I am going to present a pro-tip. It is nothing but going to the book fair with friends or family. So, before entering, share the titles with everyone, split, and start hunting because there will be hundreds of stalls. Many can sell similar titles at different prices, or sometimes the book you are searching for won’t be seen by you, but when you share it with your friends, they will help in finding it. Also, it will be a fun time spent with your friends or family.


     Every stall has more than one payment option as the world of payment has evolved. But I recommend you to carry bills in changes of 200, 100, 50. It is a good and best choice. To know the reason, continue reading till the end!


   To hunt a better treasure, try to go on the first few days of the arrival of the book fair. Because I have experience with the vendors saying that those titles were sold out. Also, I am gonna whisper a secret! Sometimes just request the vendors to find the book and keep it. And assure them that you will come and buy them.

book fair
First Copies.

          I have always visited the book fair during the weekends, it has been filled with crowds. Sometimes, there won’t even be a place for walking. People will be rushing for their treasures. So, if you want to take your kids or you want yourself a relaxed time shopping there, opt for weekdays rather than weekends. 


          After all the pro-tips, here comes the concern one. Sometimes if the place is packed with people or due to some technical reasons (I guess), there won’t be proper cell receptions available inside the tent. So, this will make it a little hard to find the people who accompanied you or to make payment through digital platforms. 

          Don’t worry about this issue, I have a few solutions. Firstly, tell the person with whom you have come, a spot in the book fair maybe near the ticket counter, entrance or water doc area, this is when you have poor mobile reception and you want to find them. If the condition is bad, some people make announcements, seek help from them.

          So, going back to the 8th tip, ‘payment choices’ where I have recommended to carry cash is because of the poor internet you can’t make the payment so, it is better to have physical money.

Dear readers, I hope that these tips and our experiences will make your trip to the book fair a memorable and fun-filled one! Happy shopping and reading!!


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Chennai Book Fair | 11 tips to ace your Book Fair visit | Diarytale

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