With an unprecedented increase in COVID-19 fallen due to the spread of the more contagious Omicron variant after the holidays, testing for the coronavirus becomes crucial for people who want to see relatives or continue their daily lives in a safe way. However, finding rapid tests in stores and online has become increasingly difficult as demand for rapid tests has skyrocketed and retailers struggle to keep them in stock. Here’s a rundown of some of the best ways to buy a COVID-19 antigen rapid test kit online now, or get ready to buy one as they become available.
You can buy the FDA Emergency Use Authorized iHealth COVID-19 Antigen Rapid Test Kit ($20, free Amazon shipping) now, including two tests per pack. The list currently states that the tests “usually ship within 13 days”, but we ordered this brand as a test and they arrived within six days of the purchase date. You can also order these tests directly from the iHealth website ($20). Your experience may vary depending on the supply and demand for these kits. Since these are currently on sale, it’s a good idea to: buy some tests to be prepared if you are showing symptoms, being exposed to someone who tests positive, or seeing people outside your regular circle of friends and family.
There are now a few other brands of tests available online through Amazon. Here’s a rundown of what’s currently available, sorted by price for each home test:
• iHealth COVID-19 Antigen Rapid Self-Test | $18-$20, subject to availability and seller, but currently shipping by the end of January
• On/Go COVID-19 At-Home Antigen Self-Test, Set of 2 | $25, ships end of January
• Lucira Molecular Covid-19 Single Use Test | $89 (but price updates to $74 if you clip the coupon on the list and they ship in five days, much faster than some of the other options on offer)
• empowerDX At-Home Covid-19 Nasal PCR Test | $100, ships within 7 days
BinaxNow has been a popular brand of antigen rapid test kits since they became available, but are extremely hard to find right now due to increased demand. Currently, BinaxNow tests are usually sold out at Walmart, but are available for online purchase for “store pickup” in some locations. Make sure to set your location in the browser to see if you can find one in your area. BinaxNow tests are also currently sold out on Amazon and at Walgreens. These tests often go in and out of stock as they become available. If you want to get ahead of the curve and stand a chance of buying a few kits with fast shipping when they become available, here’s a great way to do it:
If you have a Twitter account, follow some of the popular deal sites like Oregon-based @FatKidDeals and and @FatKid Warnings others love @Wario64. Then enable notifications for those accounts by clicking the bell icon on each of their profile pages. This sends you alerts straight to your phone as they happen in real time with the latest restock updates for quick testing. If they appear, you need to act quickly. The stock of these quick tests usually sells out quickly, especially items with Amazon Prime shipping within two days, as people often want to secure tests quickly in case they need them or experience symptoms.
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