TMTM
Negative test result by using rapid test device for COVID-19.
VioletaStoimenova/istockphoto

Free Masks and COVID Tests: How to Get Yours

Cheapism is editorially independent. We may earn a commission if you buy through links on our site. Learn more

With COVID-19 necessities priced out of reach for many people, the federal government has committed to providing at-home test kits to Americans for free. Already claimed yours? You may be eligible for more, because another round of free at-home test kits was just announced.


This is the third round of free test kits that has been made available through COVIDtests.gov. Better yet, each household can order eight test kits, double the amount previously offered. Click the Order Free At-Home Tests button, which will direct you to the U.S. Postal Service website. Shipping is estimated to take seven to 12 days.


Additionally, N95 masks have been distributed to local stores, pharmacies, and health centers. The masks, part of the Strategic National Stockpile, are limited to three per person. They were sent to Kroger, Walmart, Walgreens, and Rite Aid, as well as regional groceries including Meijer, Hy-Vee, Winn-Dixie, Harveys, and Fresco y Más. Call your local pharmacy or store to see whether they are still available.


Since the Postal Service is shipping only eight free tests per address, users living in the same apartment building in different units have sometimes been rejected as duplicates. As a workaround, enter your apartment number in the "street address" field. 


Private health plans and Medicare are also required to cover up to eight over-the-counter tests per month. Depending on your plan, these tests can be purchased at no cost or you can submit receipts to your insurance provider for reimbursement of up to $12 per test. 


More from Cheapism: 

How Does Your State's COVID Vaccine Rollout Stack Up?

At-Home COVID-19 Tests: How User-Friendly Are They?

17 Myths and Misconceptions About Medicare


For more important COVID stories, please sign up for our free newsletters.


Live Well For Less

Behind every budget is a bucket list. From travel, food and lifestyle to product reviews and deals, we’re here to show you how to save and what’s worth saving for.

Cheapism in the News
msn
today
nytimes
cnbc
newyorker
cbs