06-26-2020 General

When Mail-Order Pharmacies Are Cheaper (and When They’re Not!)

Does having your prescriptions delivered right to your door sound like an amazing perk? If so, you’re not alone. While some people aren’t able to get to the pharmacy each month, others simply don’t want the hassle – especially in light of our current climate. Here’s what you should know about mail-order pharmacies and how a prescription discount from America’s Pharmacy can help you save.

What is a Mail-Order Pharmacy?

A mail-order pharmacy is a pharmacy that is dedicated to mailing prescription drugs directly to a patient’s home.1 This concept was first created in the mid-1940s and has grown vastly since then.1 Now, mail-order pharmacies mail billions of prescriptions annually.1 Whether it’s right for you depends on a variety of factors.

When Mail-Order Pharmacies Are Cheaper

1. When you’re able to get a 90-day supply2

When you use a mail-order pharmacy, you can often fill a 90-day supply of your medication at the same cost it would be to get a 30-day supply. This means that you get access to three times the medication at the same cost. This can save you time having to refill your prescription or visit the doctor for a re-up.

2. When you’re able to pay a smaller copay2

Mail-order pharmacies are often jointly owned and managed by your insurer. This means that using a mail-order pharmacy will result in a smaller copay and a longer supply. That’s costs savings all around!

When Mail-Order Pharmacies Aren’t the Right Option

1. If your insurance makes a mail-order pharmacy less appealing3

Not all insurance providers treat mail-order pharmacies the same. Before you commit, visit your insurer’s website and see what their mail-order option will charge (including shipping). You should compare this to your local pharmacy’s prices. Because mail-order pharmacies are often appealing because of the price, this can make them unappealing as well. If the benefit is only marginal, then you may not choose to switch.

2. If you need a prescription immediately3

Some prescriptions must be taken the same day that they’re prescribed. For example, if you’re diagnosed with strep throat, most patients will stop on the way home to drop off their prescription at the pharmacy. Later that day, they’ll take the first dose. In that case, a mail-order pharmacy (which can sometimes take up to two weeks for delivery) wouldn’t be an ideal option.

3. If your prescriptions can be complicated3

If you rely on lifesaving drugs to live a normal life, you’ve likely established a good relationship with your local pharmacist. While a mail-order pharmacy is convenient, it isn’t convenient enough to not have what you need when you need it. Mail-order pharmacies can’t dynamically adjust to your needs if your dosage or timing changes according to your doctor’s recommendations. If you anticipate this being the case, stick with your local pharmacy so you can get the help you need.

Save on Prescriptions

Ready to get started with your savings? Mail-order pharmacies can be a great solution for expensive prescriptions you can’t live without. Add to those savings with America’s Pharmacy home delivery option. With over 62,000 pharmacies that accept our prescription discount card and coupons, it’s as simple as searching your medication and location. Once the options pop up, you’ll see if “Home Delivery” is an option for you.


1. https://www.pharmacytimes.com/news/what-is-the-role-of-the-mail-order-pharmacy

2. https://nhhealthcost.nh.gov/guide/question/does-mail-order-vs-retail-matter-when-i%E2%80%99m-getting-prescription

3. https://diatribe.org/when-and-why-consider-mail-order-prescriptions