How to Save Money at the Pharmacy

You are not alone in wondering how to save money at the pharmacy.  I spent almost 15 years working in a retail pharmacy and it broke my heart every time someone told me they couldn’t afford their medications 

Healthcare is so very important but there are many people that struggle with rising medical bills and are looking for any way they can to save money at the pharmacy. Medications are not generally cheap but there are a lot of ways that you can cut your pharmacy bills.

If you find yourself spending a fortune on your medicine every month, here are just a few ways that you can start saving money on prescriptions.

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How to Save Money at the Pharmacy

How to Save Money at the Pharmacy

Here are a few money-saving tips when it comes to filling your prescription medications.

Stick to generics whenever possible. 

Brand-name medications cost significantly more and do the exact same thing. Ask your doctor which medications will work for your health problems and which of those have generic alternatives (this is one of many questions you should ask your doctor!). Many times a doctor has more than one option for treatment and will not always choose the generic drug.

Skip the combination drugs. 

If your medication is actually a combination of TWO drugs…ask your doctor to write you prescriptions for those two medications separately. Quite often you will spend a lot less money on two pills than you would on only one.

The combination drug is usually just for convenience. I would rather save myself some money and take 2 pills instead!

hand over bill box with prescription medicine in it

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Look for prescription coupons.

Check the manufacturer’s websites. You may find coupons and rebate programs available for the drug you happen to be on.

Ask your pharmacist to check for discounts.

Often times drug reps stop by the pharmacy and leave discount cards and rebates with them. Ask if your medicine happens to have one available. Ask your doctors the same question. They also get a number of discount cards and coupons from drug reps.

Ask for samples at your doctor’s office

Just like those discount coupons, brand reps often leave samples at the doctor’s offices.  Ask if there are any available.  While it may not save you a ton, you might get a week or two worth of medication at no charge. 

Ask your store about their discounted generic programs and store loyalty cards. 

Many generic medications are on the store’s discounted list and just by signing up for their pharmacy program, you can get a discounted price on your generic medicines.

Signup is usually free or very inexpensive. These discounted drug lists do change periodically based on customer usage and other factors.

prescription medication and money with text overlay 'Save Money on Prescriptions'

Look for discounted online retailers

Certain websites offer discounted medications.  Whether you choose Pill Pack, Amazon Pharmacy, or another discounted source of online medications, do some research before you head to your local pharmacy.  Check out Very Well Health for a list of online pharmacies.

Investigate assistance programs

If you meet certain eligibility requirements and truly cannot afford life-saving medication, look into local assistance programs and non-profit pharmacies. Many areas have options to choose from for assistance. 

There are non-profit pharmacies for uninsured and underinsured people who cannot afford their medication.  There are also non-profit HIV clinics as well as groups that work with pregnant people to assist with medications.  

If you are wondering how to save money at the pharmacy, do some research.  Ask your doctor or pharmacist for their advice.  Too many people are skipping or rationing their medication to cut costs and that can have serious consequences.  

More Money Saving Tips

If you are looking for more ways to save money, here are a few tips that might help.

Money is tight and pinching pennies can help balance the budget.  If you have any more tips on how to save money at the pharmacy, I would love to hear them!



5 thoughts on “How to Save Money at the Pharmacy”

  1. Thankfully, no one in my family takes regular medications. We go to he Target pharmacy so we can get the 5% discount card. I may not be saving on those individual prescriptions, but the coupon helps us save on other purchases.

  2. I had no idea that pharmacies had discounted generic programs until just last week! We had a gap in coverage and didn’t have insurance for my daughter’s meds that she has to take everyday. With insurance it used to be $5.80, but when I asked how much I had to pay while we didn’t have it, they told me on the phone it was now going to be like $70. What a difference!! I was shocked. When I went to actually pick the meds up, the lady said, “We were able to get it down to $10 for you.” That totally made my day. She just had me fill out a form to sign up for their discounted generic program and just like that I saved $60!


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