PRINTING AT STAPLES STORES (U.S. and Canada customers):
I've been really pleased with the quality of Staples prints, where you can get very inexpensive same day prints if ordering before 2 PM (with a small rush fee).
For same-day/in-store 4x6", 5x7", 8x10" or 8.5x11" prints on matte paper:
- Select Staples' "copy and print services - color" option.
- Select the 110lb. white cover/card stock option for best results.
- The current price (in USD) as of March 31, 2017 is just 67 cents per print.
- When picking up your order, be sure to review your prints - if there are any print issues, the staff should be happy to reprint your order for you.
- Make sure the "fit content to paper" checkbox is UNCHECKED if you're uploading a file with a print size of less than 8.5"x11"
For same-day/in-store 11x14", 16x20" and 20x30" on semi-gloss photo paper:
- Select Staples' "photo enlargements" option.
- Choose your print size
- The utility will automatically resize and crop your uploaded file to fit the dimensions of the paper. If your file print size doesn't match the paper size, choose the first file print size that's larger than the paper size (it's better to reduce images than to enlarge, in general).
For larger same-day/in-store prints - printed on 12x18", 18x24" or 24x36" matte paper (you can trim to your desired size afterward):
- Select Staples' "Oversized Color Prints" option.
- On the media tab, select your paper size (select the paper size closest to your final print size). I recommend any of the sizes in the "White Standard HWT" option.
- UNCHECK the "fit content to paper" option unless the paper size is the same as your desired final print size and you don't intend to trim the paper.
To print larger sizes:
- Select Same Day poster option.
- Their available sizes are rather limited - 12x18", 18x24" and 24x36". Your file will automatically be resized and cropped to fit these dimensions. You'll be shown a preview image. so you can decide if this is acceptable.
- I recommend going with their super heavyweight 140 lb. matte finish option, or the semi-gloss 140 lb. medium sheen option for best results.
PRINTING AT FEDEX KINKO'S STORES (U.S. and Canada customers):
FedEx Kinko's is another great option for fast, same-day prints.
To print 8x10" or 8.5x11" files at FedEx Kinko's:
- First upload your file using their print utility on their website.
- Once uploaded, you will probably receive a message stating "this file contains a non-standard print size," so you'll want to click the "review options" button. Select "Letter - 8.5x11" for your print size. This will enlarge the 8x10 image slightly since FedEx automatically prints to fill the page.
- Then, continue on to your print options. The only thing you have to do here is select your paper. Under "Paper Selection," choose "Card and Cover Stocks" and then "Ultra Bright White (Card)" for best results.
- The current price as of this posting is $1.24 USD.
To print 11x14" files:
- Select "Tabloid - 11x17" for the print size.
- Select the 80lb. laser paper option (this is the heaviest weight they currently offer in this size).
To print larger sizes (16x20" and above):
- Select the poster printing option. The available sizes are 16x20, 18x24, 22x28, 24x36, and 36x48.
- Again, the software will automatically scale your file to fit the page size. The results are really nice and usually available the same day as you place your order.
Printing at Walgreens (U.S. customers):
Walgreens is my favorite location for same-day pickup of prints/posters in 11x14, 12x18, 16x20, 20x30 and 24x36 sizes.
- Their paper texture for posters is a nice satin - not quite matte, but not slippery smooth/gloss either.
- Walgreens often has coupons for photo printing, so check the site before purchasing online. My local Walgreens here in New Hampshire has my posters ready within 30 minutes of ordering!
- Their 8x10 prints also look great, though the only paper option is glossy paper for same-day pickup.