In 2004, the federal government introduced the EBT card system to help people with financial burdens access food items. Qualifying for this card means you have to prove that you’re financially unstable or a beneficiary of child support. However, there are particular stores where you can buy SNAP-approved food items. If you’re an EBT cardholder, you likely wonder, does Walgreens accept EBT payments?
Below is a highlight of how to locate the nearest store accepting EBT.
Walgreens sells paper towels, medication, photo services, bags of chips, and many others. It is the second-largest medicine store chain in America, with more than 9,200 branches across the US, founded in December 1901. According to Felony Friendly Jobs, Walgreens is a one-stop for many items giving you a time-conscious shopping experience.
1. Use a store locator designed for Walgreens
Upon opening Walgreen’s website, you will find a store finder tool. It directs you to the nearest store by highlighting your location’s state, city, or zip code. Use it to find stores near you.
2. Reach out to the store
According to Stamp Helper, Walgreens’ website doesn’t illustrate specific stores accepting or declining EBT or food stamps. However, it has their contact information and business hours. Most stores have a phone number that you can call to find out whether they accept EBT.
3. Find your local SNAP agency to request a list
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) lists stores and restaurants approving SNAP-related information. Request the list to determine if your local Walgreens store will provide you with SNAP-approved items using your EBT card.
4. Go to your local store
Unless you don’t find the information displayed on Walgreens’ website extensive, it’s imperative to visit a store near you and ask the cashier if they accept or decline food stamps or EBT.
Which items can you buy using your EBT card?
While Walgreens doesn’t limit what you can buy using your EBT, on the other hand, SNAP might not. You may be tempted to buy things that aren’t approved, a move that can cause your card to be revoked or face harsh penalties. Your EBT card is only used for SNAP-approved food-related products such as:
- Frozen fish or chicken
- Freshly caught seafood like shrimps, oysters, or lobsters
- Dairy products like milk, cheese, or yogurt
- Filtered water
- Breakfast cereals
- Snacks and non-alcoholic/soft drinks
Remember, Walgreens doesn’t stock the above products. Visiting an alternative grocery or market could be the only alternative you have at accessing these food products.
Which items can't you buy at Walgreens via your EBT?
According to Frugal Reality, Walgreens complies with SNAP’s rules EBT cards. You won’t buy non-food or non-basic items at Walgreens. For example, buying freshly prepared or hot foods is strictly prohibited. However, there are some exceptions for fast-food restaurants like Burger King.
You can’t use your EBT card at Walgreens to buy:
- Photo gift cards
- Vitamin supplements
- Alcoholic beverages
- Cigarettes and tobacco
- Pet foods
- Household supplies
SNAP considers the above items as luxurious goods that you can do without. In essence, it’s essential to contact your local Walgreens store to find out which items featuring under SNAP can be bought using the EBT card or food stamps. The last thing you want is to line up at your local Walgreens store only to realize that your food stamps or EBT doesn’t cover the items you’ve picked. The best way to avoid this hassle is to contact your local store for more information. For example, Walgreens accepts card payments like MasterCard, Visa, American Express Card, or Discover. It also allows payments via PayPal or PayPal Credit. Alternatively, get a gift card to avoid these last-minute disappointments. Remember, some online purchases might not go through if you use particular payments options. For example, if you want to use a gift card, visit your local Walgreens in person for further information.
Which products or services does Walgreens provide?
When you visit your local Walgreens, you likely know what you intend to buy. It could be prescription medications and the need to pick up milk. It’s a one-stop store offering almost everything you need besides food products. Like Walmart, Walgreens has built its reputation for being one of the US’s largest retail chains for pharmacies, and it keeps improving its services. The Walgreens Photo Center will cater to your needs if you need photo services. Beauty and personal care items are also at your disposal at Walgreens. They include
- Eye shadows and more
Products like shaving cream, razors, and shaving machines are also available for men looking to groom themselves. Did you know that Walgreens also has food? You can buy food items kike chips, snacks, juice, milk, and crackers. What’s more, Walgreens has a beer and other alcoholic drinks section for party animals. These items don’t feature under SNAP’s list of essential food items. Therefore, please avoid using your EBT to pay for them.
Other places you can use your EBT
As mentioned earlier, Walgreens is a drugstore offering convenience for its customer. Since it isn’t a grocery store, your EBT card might prove useless because food items you can buy there are limited. The best places to use your food stamp include:
- Fast-food restaurants
- Farmer’s markets
- Warehouse clubs like Sam’s Club
- Gas stations
Remember, Walgreens has a 30-day refund or exchange policy for buyers returning purchased food items. You will receive a refund of the original payment method, provided you produce a receipt showing you bought it there. Also, you’ll get store credit for the lowest advertised price without a receipt.
Walgreens might be the one place you expect to find food items, but not all of them are SNAP-approved. The best way to pay for items at this store is through an approved debit card or online payment system by Walgreens. So, if you have an EBT card, consider using it in stores selling SNAP-approved items. That way, you won’t have to worry about your EBT card getting declined.
Written by Dana Hanson
Read more posts by Dana Hanson