How Much Does it Cost to Develop a Disposable Camera at CVS?

Disposable cameras have been around for a long time and are still around today. In the age of digital cameras, there is something to be said for the experience of taking images with a disposable camera on film and having to wait for them to processed, ruggedness, low cost, and come in a waterproof option. You may also have a few disposable cameras laying around that you want to get processed. CVS Pharmacy is one of the few drugstores in the United States that still develops disposable cameras.

Since most disposable cameras have 27 exposures, CVS charges $14.99 (plus tax) to develop a disposable camera with 27 exposures within 7 – 10 business days. The price includes a glossy 4×6 inch print of each image and a free CD of digitally scanned negatives. However, CVS doesn’t return your negatives.

Now that you know how much it costs to develop a disposable camera at CVS. Keep reading to see how much it costs for a double set of prints, how long the process takes, how to get the images onto your phone, and the cost of other film formats CVS can develop.

Cost to Develop a Disposable Camera at CVS

Below is all the price information for getting a disposable film camera developed at CVS. Most disposable cameras have 27 exposures but some have as little as 24 exposures and as much as 36 exposures. Keep in mind that CVS does not return your negatives. See the list below for a full list of prices:

# of Disposable Camera Exposures
Single Set of Glossy Prints (4×6 in.)
Double Set of Glossy Prints (4×6 in.)
24
$14.42
$17.85
27
$14.99
$18.99
36
$16.99
$21.99
Cost of disposable film camera development at CVS Pharmacy. Not Including Tax.

Since CVS doesn’t return your negatives and the scans are not high-quality, see this list of places to get a disposable camera developed about the same price with better quality scans and your negatives returned. Also see this guide about how to ship your film safely and inexpensively to one of these online labs.

How Long Does It Take to Develop a Disposable Camera at CVS?

It can take anywhere from 7 days – 10 days to develop a disposable camera at CVS. This is because CVS does not process and scan disposable cameras in-house and mails it out to another lab (usually a Fujifilm facility) to be processed. In my experience, the process for a disposable camera loaded with color film takes about a week and a camera loaded with black & white film may take up to 3 weeks.

2022 Update:

I have found that both CVS and Walgreens have ridiculously long processing times. I sent some film off to be processed by CVS and it took over 6 months to get it developed. I believe the biggest reason the film processing facilities that CVS send film to be developed became backed up because of lack of workers due to COVID and they have a backup of orders. If you want to get film developed and get it back within a couple weeks instead of several months, see this article I wrote about where to develop film through the mail.

How Do You Develop a Disposable Cameras Developed at CVS?

The process to have a disposable camera developed at CVS is very easy. All you you need to do is to fill out information on their own paper envelope and put your disposable camera (one camera per envelope) into it. The steps are as follows:

  1. Locate and go to a CVS physical location with a photo department. Bring along your undeveloped disposable camera and ask for a film development envelope.
  2. Fill out the envelope with your information and the list the amount of prints you want.
  3. Place your exposed disposable camera inside the envelope and seal it. Note only one camera per envelope so if you are developing multiple cameras, you will need multiple envelopes with your information and number of prints.
  4. Drop the completed enveloped with your information and number of prints into the collection box in the photo department of the CVS.

CVS will notify you by phone once your order has been processed and ready to be picked up and you’ll pay with you pick up your CD and prints. With your order you will receive is a CD with your digitally scanned negatives on it for future printing or sharing on social media and 4×6″ glossy prints. If you ordered more prints you will also receive those.

How Do I Get Images from a Disposable Camera to My Phone?

There are two basic approaches to getting images from a disposable camera to your phone. Once you finish taking all the images on your disposable camera, you will first need to develop your disposable camera by using an online (or local) film development lab or a local drugstore.

Using An Online Lab To Get Images from A Disposable Camera

If you choose an online lab to develop your disposable camera they will send you your scans back and you can download them to your phone or you can scan the negatives yourself using a scanner, dedicated camera set up, or a smart app.

Using CVS To Get Images from A Disposable Camera

However, if you choose to develop your disposable camera at a local drug store like CVS, you will receive a set of glossy 4×6″ prints (one for each of your exposures) and scans of your negatives on a CD with your purchase. Since most computers available now don’t have a CD-rom drive to access the images on the CD that you get back from CVS, I recommend bringing along a USB flash drive to make it easier to transfer the images from the CD to the USB drive at one of the photo kiosks located in CVS. Then you can transfer the images from the USB to your computer and then to your mobile device.

Another option is using a smartphone app like PhotoScan by Google to scan the 4×6 prints you receive back from CVS. The free app is available for iPhone phones and Android phones and takes high resolution images of prints without reflections as well as automatically crops, resizes, rotates, and enhances the image.

How Many Shots in A Disposable Camera?

Fujifilm QuickSnap Waterproof Disposable Camera with 27 Exposures
Fujifilm QuickSnap Waterproof Disposable Camera with 27 Exposures

Most disposable cameras come with 27 shots but some come with as little as 24 exposure and as many as 36 exposures. For example, the Kodak 35mm Fun Saver disposable camera with color film comes with 27 exposures, the Analog Disposable Camera with color film comes with 24 exposures (and free development), and Lomography Simple Use disposable camera can take 36 exposures, is loaded with color film, and is also reloadable.

Do They Have Disposable Cameras at CVS?

CVS sells all kinds of disposable cameras at CVS in the store and online. If they don’t have it for sale in the store, the cameras are eligible for 1-4 day free shipping with CarePass from CVS or with orders over $35. Note that the price is just for the camera and does not include development.

At the time of writing you can find these disposable cameras for sale in-store and online at CVS for a pretty good price (not including tax):

Unless you need the disposable cameras right away, I recommend purchasing these cameras on Amazon.com where you will get a better price (not including tax):

What Other Film Formats Can CVS Develop?

Kodak Advantix Film Canister. One of the film formats that CVS can develop.
Kodak Advantix Film Canister. One of the film formats that CVS can develop.

In addition to disposable cameras loaded with color film, CVS can also develop other film formats like color and black & white 35mm film, slide film, APS (advantix), and 110mm film for the same price as a disposable camera. Just like with developing a disposable camera at CVS, the price also includes a set of 4×6 inch glossy prints, and a free CD of your digitally scanned negatives.

However, keep in mind these formats take longer to process (up to 2 – 3 weeks) than a color disposable camera at CVS.

  • Most APS (advantix) film is 24, 25, or 40 exposures on it so the cost is between $14.42 – $16.99 (plus tax).
  • Most slide film (E-6) has between 24 – 36 exposures on it so the cost is between $14.42 – $16.99 (plus tax).
  • 110mm film comes in between 10, 12, or 24 exposures so the cost is between $10.99 – $14.42 (plus tax).
Number of Exposures
Single Set of Glossy Prints (4×6 in.)
Double Set of Glossy Prints (4×6 in.)
12
$10.99
$12.99
24
$14.42
$17.85
27
$14.99
$18.99
36
$16.99
$21.99
Cost of developing 35mm black & white film, APS (Advantix), 110mm, and slide film (E-6) at CVS Pharmacy

Since CVS doesn’t return your negatives and the scans are not high-quality, check out this list of places that will develop these formats inexpensively that also will return your negatives.

Pros & Cons of Getting A Disposable Camera Developed at CVS

CVS is a good place to develop your disposable camera because of its convenient locations, decent quality photo prints, and has better scans than Walmart. Similar to Walgreens and Walmart, CVS doesn’t return your negatives. If you want your negatives returned and/or you care about getting more than low quality and low resolution scans, I suggest that you read this guide that lists several places to get film developed that will return negatives and give you much better quality scans.

Below are a list of pros and cons about getting a disposable film camera developed at CVS.

Pros:

  • Many locations available so it is likely near you
  • No shipping cost
  • Shorter wait time for color film (7 – 10 days) than Walmart (2 – 3 weeks)
  • Can develop color and black & white disposable or single-use film cameras
  • Can develop color 35mm and medium format (120 and 220) film
  • Can also develop other film formats like black & white 35mm film, black & white medium format film, Advantix (APS), 110, and slide film (E-6) but locations may vary and it takes longer (up to 2 – 3 weeks)
  • Free CD of scanned negatives and a set of glossy 4×6 inch prints included with development cost
  • Will call you when your order is ready
  • Decent quality scans but low-resolution (compared to Walmart)
  • Good option if you are using expired film and not sure how the negatives will turn out since it is inexpensive (but won’t get you film negatives back)

Cons:

  • Long wait time of 3 weeks for specific film formats (Advantix / APS, 110, Slide Film / E6, and 35mm and 120 / 220 black & white film)
  • Receive low-resolution scans and prints
  • Don’t get your negatives back
  • Prints are not as good as Walgreens
  • Very little, if any, customer service – drop film in a paper envelope in the store
  • No online film development ordering available (must go to the physical location)
  • Slightly more expensive than Walmart
  • No bulk pricing available
  • Price for development cost lands between Walgreens and Walmart. With Walmart being the least expensive and Walgreens being the most expensive.
  • Different cost to develop rolls of film with 24 exposures and 36 exposures (unlike other online development labs)
  • Will not give a discount on scanning if the roll is blank (like some online labs)

Lee

My name is Lee and I love photography and learning. I received a Master of Fine Arts in Photography in 2010 and have worked as a university professor for the last 10 years in addition to being a working photographer. I started this website to learn more about digital and film-based photography and to provide a resource for all of my students.

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