Last updated Feb. 14, 2023 by Peter Jakes
Although technology has reduced the need for paper copies, locations near you still provide free copies. A copy of an important document may be required for various reasons, such as filing a tax return, completing a loan application, selling a property, or mailing it to your insurance provider. This article will show you where to get free or low-cost paper copies if you need a copy.
It is possible to make copies for free, but you will most likely have to pay a fee. Copies are priced differently at each location, though some sites and stores charge the same price regardless of location.
When determining how much it costs to make a copy, the most important consideration is whether to use black and white or colour. Here’s what you can expect to pay for copying:
- Copying in black and white costs between $0.03 and $0.25 per page.
- Colour copies range from $0.10 to $0.75 per page.
The price listed above is for standalone copies. Expect to pay more if you require additional services, such as binding copies into a presentation. How much more you need depends on the services you require. For example, although most people have a printer next to their home computers, many still do not have access to one.
We recommend you consult our list of the finest sites to get copies.
After getting a sense of how much it costs to produce copies, let’s look at some ways to get copies done. If you cannot make copies for free using one of the alternatives listed below, there are still locations or ways you may have them made for a fair fee.
Please take advantage of your network of contacts to find friends or relatives who own copiers/printers and may lend you their time to make copies of your documents. If you want to make many copies, endeavour to bring your paper as a courtesy.
If your workplace owns a copy machine, you could use it to make copies of your documents. But before you use it, it’s best to seek permission from your boss or superiors. If you are making a few copies of a document, it’s possible that they won’t mind you using the copy machine.
The leasing office will include a small business centre with a copy machine if you reside in an apartment complex. You may be able to create copies for free with this copy machine.
Some hotels provide their guests with access to a business centre. Copy machines are often supplied in these business centres and are offered to visitors who need them. Of course, you can always stop at a motel or hotel to make free document copies. Some hotels impose a modest fee on those who need to make paper copies. So endeavour to make enquiries with the hotel staff before using the copy machine.
Being a student has several advantages, including printing off free copies of documents. Many university and college campuses provide free printing services for students and faculty. But you’ll need to be enrolled as a student to access this free service.
If you can’t make copies for free using one of the options above, there are still places where you can get them for a reasonable price. Prices vary greatly, so check with a few local stores to compare prices, especially if you intend to make many copies. Some stores also provide discounts if you print in bulk, so the cost per page may decrease if you print many copies.
FedEx, one of the best 3PL logistics companies, formerly known as Kinko’s, is a copy and printing service provider too. This organization prints and copies digital documents/files from the cloud.
FedEx also provides a shipping option that ships physical copies of your paper documents. In addition, this company can waybill your physical copies and have you pick them up at your local FedEx location or have them delivered to your house.
The UPS Store provides a service that allows you to print copies of black, white, and colour paper. Currently, there are over 4,400 UPS stores across the United States! So if you’re searching for copy services near you, you’ll discover one of the company’s outlets in your area. This store also enables you to purchase online copies and deliver them to your home or a nearby retailer.
The next option on our itinerary is your neighbourhood library. Local libraries provide services that go beyond giving free access to literary texts. For example, some libraries offer copy machines that can be used to create white and black copies of a document.
You need a library card to access this service provided by most libraries. Most libraries will charge you a modest fee if you don’t. To discover local libraries near you, type in your town’s name and the word “library” on your favourite browser. You’ll find results.
If you want to print many copies without going through the stress of finding a printing store, you should consider getting your own copier. But, again, purchasing a second-hand or low-cost copier is the best solution.
Online marketplaces like Craiglist, Offer Up, and eBay all have copy machines with different price tags.
Although buying a copier may seem extreme, it is a more convenient and inexpensive way to make copies if you need to make large copies of documents in the future.
Customers can use copy machines at some post offices. This option, however, is not available in all locations.
Instead of taking a chance and making an unnecessary trip, call ahead to ensure they provide this service. In addition, most cities, and even small towns, have post offices, so using one to make copies should not require much travel time.
If a town lacks a big-name store, a local grocery store may occasionally offer free copy service. For instance, neighbourhood stores has a lot of ways of getting you items like cheap baby clothes or free diapers, and other items.
If there are no large retailers to compete with, this could be a simple service that a lesser-known store offers.
Depending on the store, some may charge $0.10 for black and white copies and $0.25 for colour copies.
Do you live in an HOA with a clubhouse or a neighbourhood with a recreation centre? Many of these are run by fraternal organizations or local governments and frequently have a copier for public use. If you live near a community centre or clubhouse, inquire about the availability of a copy machine. This may not be suitable for large jobs, but it may be ideal if you only require a few copies.
Walgreens is an excellent choice for anyone who needs to make photocopies, not just getting free Walgreens gift cards. In addition, Walgreens is a well-known retailer, with at least one location in almost every city. Walgreens photo prices are quite reasonable, with a 45 photo costing around $0.20. Unfortunately, you cannot print documents at many Walgreens locations.
Same-day printing and copying are available at Office Depot. In addition, customers who sign up for Office Depot/Office Max emails receive 15% off any one regularly priced item.
Each black and white copy costs only $0.09.
Colour copies are only $0.42 at Office Depot/Office Max. Orders are usually ready within an hour, and there are no additional fees for pick-up. If a customer cannot visit a store, free shipping is available for qualifying orders of at least $45.
Staples is another large office supply company that may have a location near you. They have extremely competitive rates, going as low as 0.021 cents per page when you need more than 100,000 copies in a single order, which is great if you need to print things for your business. Smaller orders will have a different price. For black and white copies, the first 250 are 11 cents, then 10 cents per copy after that, up to 500 copies.
Colour costs 53 cents for the first 100 copies, then 47 cents per page after that for up to 500 copies. Because Staples has been the largest office supply store for quite some time, there is a good chance that there is one near you.
While not all CVS locations provide copy services, some do. You can call ahead to ensure that your local CVS is one of the locations that provide this service. If they do, each black and white copy will cost 19 cents, and each colour copy will cost 99 cents. While this is more expensive than other services, if a CVS Pharmacy is the closest location to you, it may be worth the extra cost.
While it may not be the first place that comes to mind, Costco provides copies at their copy and print centers at their various locations and other bulk shopping for your home or business. To get the most bang for your buck, order a minimum of 1,000 black and white copies for only 2.5 cents each and 50 colour copies for only 15 cents each.
Costco is one of the most affordable places for colour printing/copies, charging only 15 cents per colour copy. A 50-page minimum is simple to meet if you’re working on a project, launching a business, or doing anything else that necessitates a bulk order. Aside from photocopies, Costco can also print business cards, letterheads, and larger items like banners or posters.
The church is like a community where you give to God and still get back in the spirit of fellowship. Some churches offer copying services at a fee or have printers and papers donated to them, and they allow members to get copies for free or at a very reduced rate. You can take advantage of this.
Copying services are available at some Sam’s Club locations. Among other items, Sam’s Club Business Printing can print brochures, flyers, and postcards. Prices vary depending on the document type and whether colour or black and white copies are required. For example, 100 brochures are $59.96, and 100 postcards are $24.96.
When you don’t need copies right away, you might be able to save money by ordering them online and picking them up locally or having them delivered to your front door.
Because they have fewer overhead expenses and offer high-quality finishing options, online printing can be less expensive than in-person printing. While many locations listed above can make copies from a digital file or USB drive, you will need to upload an image of your document to make copies online and scan your paper copy.
Consider the following copy services in addition to some of the national retailers mentioned above (UPS Store, FedEx Office, Staples, and Office Depot/OfficeMax).
If you need at least 1,000 copies, Docucopies can be a good online option. Docucopies provides black-and-white or colour copies that can be mailed directly to your home or office, so you won’t have to pick them up anywhere once you place your order. Docucopies charges 6 cents per black and white copy (minimum of 1,000 copies) and 7.7 cents per colour copy (1,000 copy minimum). They even offer next-day delivery if you place your order before the daily cutoff time, so you’ll have your copies in no time if you decide to use their services.
Rakuten is an online cashback portal that can help you save money on online copies. You can order your copies online through Rakuten and have them delivered to you or set up for in-person pick-up.
If you own a business, this can be a great way to save money on orders without wasting time waiting for a bulk order to be completed. Instead, place your order online and either pick it up or have the copies delivered to you when they are ready. You’ll normally pay a higher rate for the same service in other stores, but Though there a questions on whether Rakuten is scam or Legit, Rakuten makes getting cheap copies near you much more convenient and gives you cash back for anything you use Rakuten for.
Best Value Copy is one of the best online print and copy companies for black, white, and colour copies. Unlike other online-only copy/print shops, you will not be charged a setup fee and will pay the same flat rate for each copy, regardless of how many copies you require.
Best Value Copy charges 2.7 cents for each black and white copy and only 9 cents for each color copy. They also do not have an order minimum, and all orders are shipped within 24-48 hours of being placed.
VistaPrint is one of the most popular online printing services available today. Although you cannot order black and white or colour copies, they can be used to create a variety of print media, including business cards, flyers, signs, and brochures.
VistaPrint will almost certainly be able to print it if it can be published. I’ve used them before, and the quality of their work is excellent, and I’ve always been satisfied with the service. Prices vary depending on what you want to do as well as the quantity of what you require.
ColorCopiesToday is yet another online copying and printing service. ColorCopiesToday provides a variety of copies. Black and white copies can be purchased for as little as 4 cents each (500-page minimum). Standard colour copies are 10 cents per copy (minimum of 150 pages), and glossy copies are 11 cents per page (200-page minimum).
Their prices decrease as the size of your order increases, so that bulk copying can be purchased here at a low cost. Other business products, such as brochures and personalized envelopes, can also be printed.
What if you need to make copies but can’t access any of these locations or a copy machine? How do you make copies if you don’t have a printer?
There is a mobile app for that! A few apps allow you to make copies of documents by scanning them with your phone. You can send the scanned versions to anyone or save them from making paper copies later. In addition, you can use Genius scan, CamScanner or Google Drive to make copies without a copier or printer.
Whether you need photos, business cards, or paper copies, there are probably several options in your area that can assist you. Some of these options may be unfamiliar to you, while others may be frequent stops for you.
Because some people cannot print from home, having these convenient locations can be extremely beneficial. Some businesses provide same-day service, allowing you to come in and out quickly. It may also take some time to receive your prints.
In either case, printing documents for a low cost is relatively simple. Just do your research to avoid overspending and ensure that the company you choose best meets your needs. You can aid your search by searching for terms such as “Where do you find the cheapest copies?”
Making copies at home is cheap if you have a good printer. However, an office or home printer is usually the less expensive option for smaller quantities of standard-sized printing.
FedEx, Staples, your local library, and community centres near you are the best places to make copies for free or cheap.
Walmart does not provide print or copy services in-store.
- Go to printer ink refill shops
- Sell old printer cartridges online
- Buy cheap printer paper in bulk
- Buy a printer with your housemates to share the costs.
- Make your document smaller
- Print in draft mode.
Copiers are usually a cheaper option when printing a large number of copies. However, printing becomes significantly less expensive if only a few pages need to be printed. Another significant distinction between the printer and the copier is the level of quality.
- On your Android phone or tablet, open the Google Docs, Sheets, or Slides app.
- Next to the name of the document you want to copy, tap More.
- Tap Make a copy.
- Enter a title and choose where to save it.
- Tap Ok.
Copies can be made at libraries, the UPS Store, FedEx Office, Staples, your local supermarket, Costco, CVS, or Office Depot/Office Max.
On average, expect to pay $0.20 per black-and-white copy or $0.30 per color copy. This will, of course, vary depending on where you go.