Emily VanSchmus | 

How to Order Costco Prints (Now That Their Photo Centers Are Closed)

The Krazy Coupon Lady is an ad-supported service. Many offers on our site contain affiliate links, and we may earn a small commission if you make a purchase using them. Some posts are sponsored by the maker of the product, and we receive a fee for the post. Learn More.

Even though you won’t see a Costco Photo Center at your local warehouse anymore, you can still save on prints by taking advantage of their 51% off Shutterfly discount. While we were sad to see the in-store Costco Photo Centers go (they had the best prices for prints and holiday cards!), we will admit the Shutterfly collaboration is convenient, especially if you already use the Shutterfly website for photo storage.

The main thing to know about the new Costco printing situation is that you can’t pick up your photo order in-person anymore — not even at CVS or Walgreens. Think of it more as an added Costco membership perk, rather than an in-warehouse service.

But is Shutterfly actually cheaper through Costco? How do their photo prices compare to Walmart, Amazon, CVS, and other stores? And does the Costco return policy apply to items purchased through Shutterfly?

We looked into all that the Costco and Shutterfly partnership has to offer and compared prices to help you get the best deals on photo prints, gifts, and more.

For more smart shopping tips and savings hacks, download the KCL app or text HACKS to 57299.

What happened to the Costco Photo Center?


In February 2021, Costco closed all of their physical Costco Photo Center locations and moved the service to an online-only platform. They didn't give a specific reason for the closure, but many people suspected it was due to a lessening demand for physical prints.

At the time the photo centers closed, they directed you to CostcoPhotoCenter.com, where you could store images and place your orders for Costco printing.

Then on Jan. 28, 2023, Costco did away with their photo services completely, and instead partnered with the company Shutterfly to provide a 51% discount to members.

This means that Costco does not print pictures at all anymore. Instead, Costco members get a 51% discount on regularly priced items from Shutterfly.com or in the Shutterfly app. Members also get free economy shipping (6 - 10 business days) on orders of $49 or more.

How to Order Costco Prints

To order prints with your Costco membership, you’ll need to log into Shutterfly using your Costco credentials. You can do this in one of two ways:

Once you’ve connected your Costco account to Shutterfly, it should remember your information for all future purchases and automatically apply the 51% discount, plus give you free shipping on orders of $49+.

KCL TIP: Remember, only regularly priced items quality for the discount, so it’s best to avoid their small sales to get the biggest savings. However, some Shutterfly sales — like Cyber Monday and free shipping promos — can actually be better than the Costco discount, so always check our Shutterfly coupons page to compare the current savings.

Costco Print Sizes and Prices

Even though you can’t get photo prints through the Costco Photo Center anymore, a Costco membership is still the cheapest way to score photo prints if you're planning to print a bunch.

4x6 Prints

I compared prices on 4x6 prints and found that Shutterfly (with the Costco discount) is actually cheaper than Walmart, Walgreens, CVS, and just about every other retailer with photo services.

But there's one catch. Shutterfly has the most expensive shipping — even with the Costco discount. You’ll pay $7.99 shipping on all orders under $49. That means you’d need to buy 545 photo prints on Shutterfly to score free shipping.

While Amazon’s 4x6 prints are more expensive at $0.17 each, Amazon Prime members will score free shipping (with no minimum number of prints), so your order total would actually be cheaper. And the Snapfish print price is hard to beat.

Here’s how 4x6 print costs compare at the major stores:


KCL TIP: Keep an eye out for limited-time Walgreens photo coupons that lower their price on 4x6 prints to just $0.12 per print.

5x7 and 8x10 Prints

While 4x6 prints are by far the most popular print size, they’re not the only option with your Shutterfly discount through Costco.

I compared prices for larger print sizes and found that your Costco discount will still get you the lowest cost per print. Just remember about the free shipping minimums we talked about earlier.


Are Costco prints a good deal?

So, how does Costco stack up against the competition? They have the lowest prices per print, but also the most expensive shipping. So if you’re only ordering a few photos, you’re better off ordering through Amazon (if you’re a Prime member), or one of the retailers who offer free in-store pickup like Walmart, Walgreens, CVS, or Snapfish.

For example, let’s say you just want to order 50 4x6 prints. With the Shutterfly x Costco deal, you’d pay $4.50 for the prints, and $7.99 for shipping, for a total of $12.49. With Amazon Prime, you'd pay $8.50 for the prints with free shipping.

Using Snapfish, those 50 prints would come out to $5 (with free in-store pickup), making it the cheapest option.

However, if you’re ordering larger photo gift items like canvas prints, posters, and metal prints, the Costco x Shutterfly discount will be your best bet, as long as your order total is over $49.

KCL TIP: While the generous Costco return policy won't cover your photo prints, Shutterfly's "100% Happiness Guarantee" says that if you're not satisfied with your order, they'll make it right.

Does Costco still do passport photos?

Unfortunately, Costco no longer offers passport photo services since they shut down the in-store Photo Center. That means you can’t go to the warehouse to have your photo taken — and you can't really order passport prints through Shutterfly, either.

According to Shutterfly's FAQ page, they don't recommend that you attempt to print your own passport photos using their site.

KCL TIP: You can get passport photos taken at a AAA branch office near you — even without a AAA card. AAA members will pay around $8 – $10 per set (nonmembers pay $12 – $15 per set) with no appointment required. If you have the Plus or Premier level of AAA membership, you get free passport photos.

Get our best deals on the go

By entering my phone number, I want to receive promotional messages from The Krazy Coupon Lady. Message frequency varies. Text STOP to 57299 to end or text HELP for help. Msg & data rates may apply. View Terms & Privacy.