Reporting Esme Murphy
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — It’s hard not to notice that CVS drug stores are popping up around the metro.
CVS has about 50 stores in Minnesota compared to Walgreens, which has more than 130. But how do the chains score when it comes to price on key items?
We visited a CVS and Walgreens within half a mile of each other. We picked out six popular items: Scott toilet paper 4-pack, Diet Coke 12-pack, Maybelline Great Lash Mascara, Advil 50 tablets, Gillette shaving cream and Secret deodarant.
The six items were a combined $28.24 at Walgreens and $26.17 at CVS, a difference of $2.07. The biggest price range was for Maybelline Great Lash mascara, which was $6.99 at Walgreens and $5.49 at CVS, a difference of $1.50.
While CVS turned out to have better prices than Walgreens in our shopping trip, we decided to expand our survey to a hometown company: Target. We found that for our six items, Target’s prices beat both CVS and Walgreens.
Remember the items that were $28.24 at Walgreens and $ 26.17 at CVS? At a nearby Target, the price was $23.70. That means our items were $4.54 less at Target than at Walgreens. That Maybelline mascara that was $6.99 at Walgreens was only $4.79 at Target, that’s a difference of $2.20.
Another big price spread: The Gillette shaving cream was $3.99 at Walgreen, $3.79 at CVS and just $2.49 at Target, It’s a lesson some say will change their shopping habit.
A spokesperson for Target pointed out their in-store credit card offers an additional five percent off all purchases.
CVS officials said by joining their free preferred customer program, shoppers can often get coupons and in-store rebates that can result in the lower prices.
Walgreens officials said they are constantly monitoring pricing to ensure they remain competitive. Their prices reflect the costs of doing business in the area as well as the nearby retail competition.
Here is a breakdown of the items and what they cost at each store:
At CVS, Scott toilet paper was $4.59, a 12-pack of Diet Coke was $3.34, Maybelline mascara was $5.49, Advil was $5.59, Gillette shaving cream was $3.79 and Secret deodorant was $2.87 for a total purchase of $26.17.
At Target, Scott toilet paper was $3.99, Diet Coke was $4.00, Maybelline mascara was $4.79, Advil was $5.84, Gillette shaving cream was $2.49 and Secret deodorant was $2.49 for a total purchase of $23.70.
At Walgreens, Scott toilet paper was $4.79, Diet Coke was $3.49, Maybelline mascara was $6.99, Advil was $5.99, Gillette shaving cream was $3.99 and Secret deodorant was $2.99 for a total purchase of $28.24.