Pros / It’s one of the least expensive photo book companies we tested.
Cons / You cannot share collaboration access with others.
Verdict / Offering a decent selection of backgrounds, book sizes and cover options; CVS Photo is a great photo book service to use since you have plenty of freedom during the creation process and the price won’t hurt your wallet as much as other services.
CVS Photo is a great option if you need to order a budget photo book in a hurry. If a location is near you, you can order a book for same day pickup. However, the image quality of the cover and pages isn’t the best we’ve seen and the company doesn’t offer as many personalization options as others.
CVS does charge tax in addition to shipping, however, the total overall cost for our book even with these charges was cheaper than most other services. Before taxes and shipping, an 8 x 8 20-page sells for $19.99. Additional pages are bought in pairs for $1.99, which is pretty common for the industry.
Our photo book turned out decently, but wasn’t anything amazing. The cover image was a little blurry and darker than the original photo. Testers stated that some of the images didn’t display contrast very well. The highlights came out bleached and the dark sections had little definition. There was also a decent amount of graininess in the images. The binding is good except for visible threading on the back page. You’ll quickly notice the flimsiness of the pages as they feel like they could crease or rip easily.
I was impressed with the templates and graphics offered by CVS. They were stylish and would look good on just about any project. You’ll find 283 backgrounds to choose from, which gives you plenty of styling options. I also counted 75 pre-designed photo books that already have backgrounds and graphics placed throughout the book. All you have to do is add your images and the book is ready to print.
There are seven book sizes to choose from including the most popular: 8.5 x 11, 11 x 14 and 8 x 8. CVS Photo offers hardbound covers, softbound covers, lay-flat covers and window covers. This service does not offer dust covers, fabric covers or leather covers so if that’s something you want, you’ll need to look elsewhere. We recommend Shutterfly as it has more cover options.
I found that I had a lot of creative freedom when using this service. I could freely transform any of the layouts I chose to make my photos any size I wanted. The editing process was smooth and easy to use. It included an autofill feature and the ability to share albums with others so you can quickly add images to your books or get additional images from friends and family. You can also import photos from Facebook, Instagram, Flickr and Google Photos.
CVS wasn’t the fastest service when it came to processing and shipping our book, but our order did arrive within a respectable wait period. You can upgrade to express shipping if you want your book to arrive faster, just keep in mind that CVS has a three to five day processing period before shipping. If you need your book faster than that, you can choose express shipping or have your book made to pick up in store. For questions with your book, contact a CVS employee via email or look at the FAQs page.
CVS Photo is a great option for anyone who wants a book made quickly and/or inexpensively. We found the print quality below average and the pages were thin, but the binding was sturdy and reliable. I personally found the selection of background designs to be fashionable and modern. You can make a book for any occasion using this service.
- Price for 20-Page 8 x 8 Hardcover
- Print Quality
- Book Quality
- Ease of Use