It doesn't seem like that long ago (although it has been well over a decade since digital photos became more common than film) that I would take my film to the store and anxiously wait for the pictures to be developed. Once one hour printing was an option I ALWAYS paid extra to get it done in an hour because I am impatient! Things are much better now that I can see the pictures immediately on my phone or digital camera. I have recently started learning more about photo editing and now I am impatient to get the pictures on my computer and start editing!
One of the benefits of digital photography is that you do not have to get all the pictures you take printed just to see what you have. Now you can choose only the pictures you love and have those printed. It is easy to let the pictures sit on your phone or computer indefinitely, but they will never make it into your scrapbook if they're trapped in your device!
The most convenient way to get your digital photos printed is to use an online printing service. That way, you can send the pictures directly from your computer or phone. However, there are a lot of options for digital photo printing so it can be overwhelming to choose the best one. I have used several of the sites and will review a few of them here.
Most of the online digital photo printing sites offer there own editing software. The quality and ease of use will vary greatly from site to site. Also, if you decide to use more than one site-which I do-it will get frustrating to learn the different nuances of the editing software. In my opinion, it is better to edit the pictures before uploading them to a photo printing site. Use the editing software on your computer, an online editing software such as PicMonkey, or purchase an editing software such as Lightroom or Photoshop. Use whichever works best for you and learn the details of your chosen editing software so you can edit quickly and won't get discouraged every time you start working on your pictures.
There are several sites that offer great deals on small prints, such as 4x6. I suggest you sign up for the email lists of a few of these sites because they will send you an email any time they run a deal.
Shutterfly - I have used Shutterfly on multiple occasions and I have always been happy with the quality of the 4x6 prints. They usually have some type of deal running. For example, right now you can get free shipping for orders over $39.00. Check out their website or join the mailing list for the most up-to-date deals. I also like to use Shutterfly to make photo books. They have a lot of options available and the books are a good quality.
You have the option to pick up your photos at places such as CVS and Target but the cost is higher per print in store. If you can get free shipping then having them delivered will be the cheaper option.
The standard online price right now for 4x7 photos on Shutterfly is $0.15 per print.
Snapfish - Snapfish is my main go-to for my scrapbook photos because they are ALWAYS running a deal. Right now they are running a deal for Penny Prints which is my favorite. You can get 99 4x7 print for $0.99. You will have to pay for shipping but it still ends up being a great deal, and sometimes they run the penny sale up to 500 prints. I'm sure most of us have at least that many pictures we could get printed at any given time!
You also have the option to pick up prints in store at places such as Walgreens and Walmart. Just like Shutterfly, the cost in store is higher than online. Take the time to compare the total cost per print including shipping. I generally find that it is less expensive to have them mailed to me.
The standard price right now for 4x7 photos on Snapfish (if you do not do the penny sale) is $0.09 per print.
Photo Affections (FreePrints) - Have you heard of apps that allow you to get free digital photo prints? FreePrints is one of these types of apps that I have used. You can download it on your phone and get pictures printed directly from your phone. You can also go to their website and upload pictures from your computer or online storage such as Dropbox or your Google drive.
Photo Affections offers a variety of other products on their site. They give you the free prints as an incentive to get you to spend time on their website and purchase other products.
Currently, you can get up to 85 free prints per month. You will pay for shipping which ranges from $1.99 to $9.99 depending on the amount of pictures you order. If you get 85 prints and pay $9.99 for shipping it adds up to about $0.12 per print.
Mpix - I have a friend who is a professional photographer and she recommends Mpix.com for high quality prints. If you are looking for a more professional looking print you have some options for finishes at Mpix that can improve the look of the photos.
You can add a lustre coating to your prints that adds extra protection to the pictures and enhances the look of the prints. It costs an extra $0.49 per 4x6 print to add the lustre coating, so this can get expensive if you are printing lots of pictures. Mpix is a good option if you are wanting to get larger prints and products to display in your home.
Prices for 4x6 prints from Mpix start out at $0.19 per print before shipping.
Other options - I also use the photo printing services at my local Sam's club. The prices are competitive and the quality is good enough for scrapbooking purposes. When I am feeling especially impatient and do not want to wait for shipping I go to Sam's club and use the one hour photo printing service.
Many areas also have photo labs that can provide high quality prints. The prices will vary so check out the labs in your area to see if they are competitive.
There are so many options that you should be able to get high quality prints for a great price. Have you used any of the places mentioned above? What is your go-to place for digital prints?