Cvs Vs. Walgreens: What’s The Difference? Which Is Better? Cheaper? (Find Out!)

CVS and Walgreens are always in close proximity. Both are direct competitors and hold large market shares.

However, if you have ever walked into either store, you will likely find that they are very similar. What is the difference between CVS & Walgreens? Which is better? Which is more affordable? This is what we discovered…

CVS Vs. Walgreens

Walgreens and CVS (Consumer Value Stores), are two large American pharmacy and health retail chains. Both companies offer health-related products, prescription medication, and support services. Each company has its own brand range. They are two completely different companies.

This article examines two companies, CVS & Walgreens. It reveals the differences and similarities as well as the verdicts.

What are the similarities between CVS and Walgreens?

Similar services are offered by CVS and Walgreens. These services include pharmacy retail, as well as the support and provision of a wide range of health care needs.

Walgreens and CVS both sell prescription and over-the-counter drugs and medication. You can shop for cosmetics and beauty products as well as gift cards, greeting cards and stamps.

Both CVS and Walgreens have their own private labels. These can be clearly identified on both sites.

Both CVS and Walgreens offer health services, including:

  • Pharmacy services
  • Photo editing and finishing
  • Vaccine clinics
  • Prescription glasses
  • Diabetes devices
  • Support for RX
  • Virtual care/home visits
  • General health clinics
  • Transfers of prescriptions
  • Provider connections
  • Counselling
  • Advice from pharmacists
  • Drug management
  • Home delivery

Are Walgreens and CVS the Same?

Both companies advertise and claim to have a wide range of social responsibilities. These include:

  • Access to high-quality care for everyone
  • Diversity
  • Environmental care
  • Sustainability
  • Building healthy communities
  • Virtual Care Solutions
  • Mental well being
  • CVS Health stresses the need to address prescription opioid misuse, which they call “one of the greatest public health problems of our generation.”
  • Health news at the cutting edge
  • Walgreens has an additional social responsibility called Valuing Diverse talent. Walgreens believes that this value is based upon a commitment to developing, recruiting, and inspiring a diverse workforce will improve relationships with the multicultural customers and patients they serve.
  • Equal employment
  • Product integrity

Are Walgreens or CVS offering reward programs?

Both CVS as well as Walgreens offer reward programs to their customers. ExtraCare is the CVS program, while myWalgreens is the Walgreens programme. Both programmes were created to reward loyal customers for their consistency and loyalty.

CVS ExtraCare

  • Join for free
  • ExtraBucks offers customers exclusive, personal deals, savings, and rewards on almost everything they buy
  • Customers can earn points that can be used as cash towards almost any store (with certain restrictions).
  • You cannot use your accrued points to buy gift cards such as CVS gift cards, prescriptions or money orders.
  • Online or in-store registrations are possible
  • ExtraCare members receive a card plastic with a unique number
  • Stickers displaying the “ExtraBucks”, rewards that customers receive with every purchase of pharmacy products, are displayed on pharmacy products. These stickers can be used to redeem their reward points at their next visit.

CVS CarePass

  • The subscription program costs $5 per month or $48 per annum. This program is best suited for CVS frequent shoppers.
  • All ExtraCare benefits are available to members, plus a few extras such as $10 per month in ExtraBucks.
  • Prescriptions eligible for free same-day delivery
  • 20% off all CVS brand products (inclusive of wellness products)
  • 24/7 online access to a pharmacist at participating locations

myWalgreens:

  • Join for free
  • Register online or in-store
  • Customers can save money by locking in sale prices
  • Earn unlimited rewards storewide (1% Walgreens Cash reward per $1)
  • Walgreens products branded by Walgreens earn you rewards (10% per £1)
  • Get exclusive deals and offers

myWalgreens Credit Card:

  • Join for free
  • Register online or in-store
  • Customers unlock sale prices
  • Earn rewards (5% Walgreens Cash rewards per $1)
  • Walgreens products branded by Walgreens earn you rewards (10% per £1)
  • Additional purchase rewards
  • Additional shopping conveniences
  • Walgreens Cash Rewards for achieving your health goals

What are the main differences between CVS and Walgreens?

The biggest difference between CVS and Walgreens is the company size. CVS is the largest company while Walgreens is second. Both companies strive to be a leader in the pharmaceutical market.

CVS Health was established in 1963 as Consumer Value Stores. Walgreens (now Walgreens Boots Alliance), was founded in 1901 under the name Walgreen Drug Co. CVS currently has more pharmacies than Walgreens. However, both chains have over 9000 locations in the US.

CVS is available in the United States, District of Columbia, and Porto Rico. Walgreens has 13,000 locations in the U.S.A, Europe, and Latin America.

Walgreens have been known as the “corner shop”, meaning that they are the entrance to the street with the highest traffic flow. Many of these stores have a drive-thru pharmacy. The newer Walgreens buildings are more modern in design and appearance. Walgreens stores located in larger cities have multiple floors.

CVS started as departments in larger department stores. They opened small beauty and health stores in enclosed shopping centers in 1978. In 1985, Caremark was launched, which is a prescription benefit management system. The majority of CVS mall outlets were relocated to new freestanding locations.

Walgreens and CVS have slightly different store formats. Walgreens stores are generally the same, while CVS stores may vary from one location to another. MinuteClinics are available at many CVS stores for prescription refills and nurse practitioner care.

Both CVS and Walgreens keep alcohol and tobacco products behind the counter at both locations. CVS decided in 2014 to discontinue selling tobacco products as part of its pursuit of better health for all. This made CVS the first major drugstore not to sell tobacco.

Is CVS more expensive than Walgreens?

Both retailers’ regular shoppers agree that the amount of money you spend at each store will depend on what you buy and how often you shop there.

This is because if you are a frequent shopper at one, and you haven’t taken advantage of any reward programs, you’re going to end up out of pocket.

All major pharmacies have been working hard to achieve record sales due to a rise in the demand for protection health products over recent years. The following conclusion was reached based on consumer feedback:

  • CVS was the most affordable for prescription drugs
  • Walmart was the best place to buy common vaccines including seasonal flu shots.
  • CVS was the most affordable for over-the-counter medication and vitamins, although Rite Aid was sometimes more expensive again
  • Walmart had better personal care and beauty products
  • Walmart and CVS both offer “store brands,” which are always cheaper than other brands.
  • Both companies offer reward programs that offer substantial discounts
  • CVS seems to have the largest selection of brands

Which pharmacy is better: CVS or Walgreens?

The concept of “retail pharmacy”, which has evolved into an extremely convenient and present service, means that there’s very little to differentiate one super-chain pharmacy from another.

All CVS and Walgreen pharmacies provide conveniences like automatic prescription refills and text/phone/email reminders. They also offer home delivery and online prescription management. All pharmacies offer long hours and drive-thru prescription pickup.

Both companies have a history of scandalous and shady practices that they undoubtedly regret. Both companies have a complicated portfolio of “social responsibilities”, which is almost identical.

The way your local pharmacy treats you is what will determine which pharmacy chain you choose. These qualities aren’t exclusive to any particular retail chain, but rather are created by the people who work at your local pharmacy.

You want to know more about CVS? These posts will help you find out if CVS can print documents and if CVS takes passport photos.

Summary

Many people want to know where they can find the best support and information for their ongoing or sudden health issues and needs. Walgreens and CVS, two of the largest pharmacies and health companies in America, offer similar products and services.

About the author

I have always been a shopaholic. A lot of times my questions went unanswered when it came to retail questions, so I started Talk Radio News. - Caitlyn Johnson

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