Many prescription coverage plans are set up so that generic drugs are a flat price, often $10 to $20. Others set a minimum price for generic drugs. But many of the most commonly prescribed generics can be found for cheaper than $10–if you know where to look.
Find A Cheap Source
Walmart offers hundreds of generic prescriptions for $4 for a 30 days supply or $10 for a 90 day supply, including common antibiotics, heart medications, pain killers and arthritis medications, birth control, and more. Without a prescription, generic birth control costs $40 per year at Walmart. Very few prescription insurance programs match that price!
Sam’s Club and Costco are two of the cheapest pharmacies in the United States for drugs not in Walmart’s $4 generic program. Target and KMart also have drugs at discount prices, though usually not as low.
In contrast, CVS, Walgreens, and Rite-Aid are terrible places to go for drugs without insurance, as they have very high markups.
Ask The Right Questions
Always ask your doctor to prescribe a generic, if one exists. Then you can call local discount pharmacies and ask what the price without insurance for the generic would be. By checking ahead, you can get the best price possible–with insurance or not.
If you don’t ask for the non-insurance price, almost no pharmacists will tell you if you can get a better rate without insurance, even at a discount pharmacy. So don’t forget to ask!
Compare The Price With Incentives For The Best Deal
Occasionally, a pharmacy in your area may be offering a gift card for bringing in a new prescription. I’ve gotten gift cards ranging from $15 all the way to $50 per prescription that I’ve transferred to a pharmacy. If you keep track of local offers, you can determine the cheapest overall option–insurance or no insurance, offer or no offer.