Order Medicine Online to Save Time and Money

Heading out to the pharmacy can be a painful experience for your wallet, your watch, and your ego.

Does the idea of going to the drugstore on the corner make you cringe each month when your tiny prescription bottles run empty again?

Whether you want to save yourself the embarrassment of picking up a prescription for your condition or just a few dollars, a mail-order pharmacy may be able to save the day.

Many consumers are running into websites that claim to offer a pharmacy online. These pages are complete with discounts and easy access to an online drugstore. With or without a prescription, some of these online medicine store websites could have legitimate value for consumers.

Best Online Pharmacy Websites

Award Emblem: Top 6 Best Online Pharmacy Websites

The trick to making an online medicine purchase is to ensure that you’re buying from a trusted and reliable online pharmacy. Online medicine doesn’t have to make you nervous if you can ensure that you are going to buy drugs online that meet your expectations and the FDA’s rigorous standards.

AdvisoryHQ wants to help consumers avoid some of the risk they may face when it comes to finding the best online pharmacy. If you’ve hesitated to make an online medicine purchase because you didn’t know where to turn, this ranking of the top choices for a mail order pharmacy should offer some assistance.

Let us guide you to the right place to order medicines online instead of going through the drive-thru next month. You can save yourself the time, money, and embarrassment by using a pharmacy online instead of the local drugstore.

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AdvisoryHQ’s List of the Top 6 Best Online Pharmacy Websites

List is sorted alphabetically (click any of the online pharmacy companies below to go directly to the detailed review section for that online pharmacy):

Top 6 Best Online Pharmacy Websites | Brief Comparison & Ranking

Pharmacy Online Websites



Aetna Home Delivery

Hartford, CT


CVS Caremark

San Antonio, TX


Express Scripts

St. Louis, MO


Health Warehouse

Florence, KY



Mission, KS



Phoenix, AZ


Table: Top 6 Best Pharmacies Online | Above list is sorted alphabetically

Tips for Ordering Your Medicine Online

While the Internet has proved itself useful over the years, the idea of using an online drugstore to order medicine online makes some people worried about the potential outcome. Online medicine shopping can be filled with risks, especially if you aren’t finding a reliable or trustworthy online medicine store.

What should you be looking for before making an online medicine purchase?

Never order from an unlicensed mail-order pharmacy. Every place that sells medicine online should be licensed within their country of origin, whether that’s Canada or the United States or somewhere else. Never buy drugs online from an online medicine store that has no type of licensing or oversight on their daily practices.

Furthermore, each licensed mail-order pharmacy should also have a physical street address and a phone number. Even if the location of the pharmacy online resides in a different country, it is far better to have a physical address than not.

Consumer Reports recommends searching for a pharmacy online that has walk-in stores within the country. This ensures that they have the backing of a major company or drugstore that is separate from their best online pharmacy.

Many choices for the best online pharmacy are also going to be Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Sites (VIPPS). This is a voluntary program that mail-order pharmacies can enroll in, regulated by the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy. Certain requirements must be met in order to sell medicine online under this label:

  • Must have a physical location listed that is within the United States
  • Can only dispense FDA-approved medications
  • Prescriptions can only be filled within a doctor-patient relationship

In your search for a pharmacy online, you may find several that sell drugs without a prescription. According to research by the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NAPB), almost 85% of these websites will sell drugs online without a prescription from an authorized physician.

What do you risk when you buy medicine online without verifying the pharmacy it comes from? Your online medicine purchase could yield subpar drugs, prescriptions without active ingredients, or even dangerous components and ingredients.

Before you buy medicine online to fill your next prescription, consider the consequences of purchasing from a nonreputable online drugstore. Make sure you’re taking every precaution necessary to find discounts from a mail order pharmacy while still receiving safe and useful medications for your condition.

medicine online

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Detailed Review—Top Ranking Best Online Pharmacy Websites

Below, please find the detailed review of each pharmacy on our list of mail-order pharmacy websites. We have highlighted some of the factors that allowed these online medicine websites to score so high in our selection ranking.

Aetna Home Delivery Review

Aetna is a highly recognized brand name for consumers, but many of them still do not recognize they have a pharmacy online. For consumers who need maintenance medications (for conditions such as diabetes or asthma), they may be able to order medicine online through this best online pharmacy for an added convenience.

One of the biggest perks of the Aetna Home Delivery mail-order pharmacy is the ability to receive a larger supply of maintenance medications all at one time. Up to ninety-day prescriptions are available as opposed to the traditional thirty-day supply that most retail locations are able to provide. Refills are completed quickly and easily through their online drugstore website, phone call, or mail order.

How can you get started with an online medicine purchase through the Aetna Home Delivery program? You have a few different choices for how to start:

  • Set up a secure user account
  • Call into customer service
  • Mail an order form and paper prescription
  • Have your doctor fax the prescription to Aetna

Like many of the other best online pharmacy websites, Aetna recommends having your doctor issue two prescriptions (one for thirty days and one for ninety days). This ensures that you will receive your mail-order pharmacy order in time before your first prescription runs out.

A certified pharmacist does verify each individual order and is available for questions and concerns at any time.

Like all of the best online pharmacy websites, Aetna is a VIPPS-accredited pharmacy according to the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy. Their fine print lists an address found in Hartford, Connecticut.

CVS Caremark Review

Consumers who have hesitated to utilize a pharmacy online may change their minds in order to use the service provided by CVS Caremark. One of the most well-known and well-recognized pharmacies in the country, their mail order pharmacy is held to similar standards compared to the drugs you would order and receive from their retail locations.

One of the nicest advantages to ordering medicine online through this online pharmacy is the ease of seeing all information in one location. For example, when you need to order drugs online, you can see all of the following:

  • Refill information and details
  • Prescription information (such as quantity, number of refills, and expiration)
  • History of your prescription
  • Estimated costs or more affordable solutions

In addition to being a relatively easy online drugstore to complete your shopping at, you have several choices. Their mail-order pharmacy could send your prescription straight to your doorstep for a ninety-day supply. Alternatively, you could arrange for pickup at a retail location from the website of their online pharmacy.

Consumers will need to plan ahead to order medicine online through CVS Caremark. From the day that you mail your order into their online drugstore, it will be approximately ten to fourteen days until it is delivered. Standard shipping is free but expedited shipping could help your prescription to arrive within seven to twelve days for an additional fee.

The physical location noted for this mail order pharmacy is in San Antonio, Texas.

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Express Scripts Review

Express Scripts is features a pharmacy online without physical locations around the world. However, consumers don’t need to fear that this mail order pharmacy may be illegitimate. They have gone out of their way to secure plenty of certifications to put your mind at ease before you order any medicine online.

In addition to the VIPPS certification, Express Script is also NCQA-certified in utilization management and URAC-accredited as a mail-order pharmacy and pharmacy benefit management service.

Bear in mind that their physical location is noted to be in St. Louis, Missouri.

Not all consumers will be able to make use of the pharmacy online from Express Scripts. You will be required to have a membership through an employer, your current health plan, or through Medicare Part D. Membership to their best online pharmacy may come with a separate ID card to let you know of the benefits associated with purchasing medicine online.

Benefits to members who use Express Scripts to order medicine online include the convenience of having medicine shipping to you. Beyond that, you can opt for up to a ninety-day supply of your prescription to arrive on your doorstep.

Online medicine shopping is made easy through this best online pharmacy. You can choose to refill or renew a prescription through the website or the mobile app with free standard shipping on each order. Before it ships, Express Scripts will reach out to your doctor to verify and receive approval for the order that you select. 

Health Warehouse Review

Another option for consumers who want to buy medicine online, Health Warehouse provides a pharmacy online that is licensed to operate in all fifty states. Operating as a VIPPS-accredited pharmacy online, this Kentucky-based service has several options that consumers will find convenient.

Like many of the other best online pharmacy websites, Health Warehouse provides free shipping, but they do have an additional stipulation. Users must opt into their monthly newsletter in order to receive this perk. There are also a few additional shipping options that could make the experience better or faster for you:

  • USPS/UPS Signature Confirmation: $3.95 (this option is strongly recommended by their pharmacy online)
  • USPS Priority (one to three business days): $10
  • UPS Tracking (one to five business days): $11.95
  • UPS 2-Day: $17.95
  • UPS Next Day Air: $29.95

Orders with their pharmacy online will take approximately one to two business days to ship for over-the-counter orders. Prescriptions will take approximately one to three business days to ship.

Perhaps the best feature of Health Warehouse is that they do not accept insurance. They claim that cutting out the middlemen allows them to offer very low everyday pricing that consumers can truly use. They cite the fact that many of their customers opt to pay out of pocket for their prescriptions instead of filing with insurance once they discover HealthWarehouse.com.

Another convenience, Health Warehouse will also allow you to transfer a prescription from your current local pharmacy.

pharmacy online

Image Source: Health Warehouse

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OptumRX Review

Available from a widely recognized health insurance company, the mail-order pharmacy and online pharmacy option from OptumRX is a popular solution. Like many of the other contenders for the best online pharmacy website, OptumRX partners with health insurance providers such as United Healthcare to make it easy to enroll and request refills for your prescriptions.

When you first sign up for their pharmacy online, they recommend that you have your doctor issue two different prescriptions: one that can be used immediately at a local pharmacy and another for a ninety-day prescription available through their mail order pharmacy.

Bear in mind that the pharmacists at United Healthcare are unable to make changes to your prescription. They will have to dispense it directly as written by your physician on the prescription itself.

Sent in a discreet package, your prescription will arrive within seven to eleven days of your order placement. Overnight shipping is available for an extra fee. For an additional $12.50, your prescription will receive expedited shipping once it is received by the OptumRX company.

You can order medicine online for a refill once you are down to just two remaining weeks’ worth of medication. Refills can be placed through a variety of methods:

  • Online
  • Customer service (including TDHI for the hearing impaired)
  • Mail-in order form

You also have access to a pharmacist from OptumRX Mail Service online pharmacy if you have any questions, day or night. They may also be able to address any concerns that you have regarding your current medications or prescriptions that weren’t addressed by your doctor.

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Walgreens Review

As most consumers would expect, Walgreens also offers one of the best online pharmacy websites that all should be aware of. If you’ve hesitated to commit to an online drugstore for fear of illegitimate drugs, ordering from a mail-order pharmacy with such an extensive reputation should help to put your mind at ease before you buy drugs online next time.

In order to use this mail order pharmacy, you will first need to check to make sure your insurance plan includes the use of this program.

When you can order medicine online through a mail order pharmacy, Walgreens is a great choice because of the overall convenience of their business model. For example, you can receive many of the following benefits that make this possibly the best online pharmacy website:

  • Access to advice from a pharmacist 24/7
  • Free standard shipping on all prescriptions
  • Ability to receive a ninety-day supply of prescriptions
  • Maintenance medications delivered to your preferred location
  • Ability to save on co-pays

When you order medicines online through this mail order pharmacy, you can also manage your entire family’s prescriptions from this one page. Their online service allows you to add family members, easily update and manage insurance information, and more.

With order status and auto-refills, you can ensure that you always have the information you need to continue to make an online medicine purchase. Like many of the more reputable choices for an online drugstore, you will need to either send a paper prescription into their company or have your physician fax a copy using their form.

Free standard shipping should have your prescription to you in approximately ten days from the time you place an order.

Prescriptions and registration for their mail order pharmacy is sent to a PO Box located in Arizona.

Conclusion—Top 6 Best Online Pharmacy Websites

When it comes to online medicine shopping, consumers want to be certain that their mail order pharmacy will provide legitimate and safe drugs. Online medicine isn’t an area where a patient wants to take a chance on receiving an unhelpful prescription for an important condition, even if it does promise to save them money.

An online medicine purchase is serious business, especially because you could be allowing your life to hang in the balance. By opting for one of the best online pharmacy websites that is certified and well known, consumers are bound to have a more pleasant and safer experience when they order medicines online.

Depending on your insurance and your coverage, these online medicine store solutions may be simple to work through. You’ll quickly find that many of these mail order pharmacy websites can provide discounts based on the costs of your prescriptions at retail locations. In many instances, this will be determined by your specific type of insurance coverage.

Next time you need to fill a prescription, consider using one of these reliable choices for an online medicine store in order to buy drugs online. It could save you time and money with the added convenience of receiving ninety-day supplies at discounted rates with your online medicine shopping.

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