Seasonal changes are no picnic for those with seasonal allergies. If your head explodes with the blossoming flowers or falling leaves, you’re not alone. More than 50 million Americans struggle with allergies each year, making it the sixth leading cause of chronic illness in the U.S
Most allergy sufferers turn to over-the-counter (OTC) products to combat symptoms including watery eyes, sniffly noses, sneezing, and coughing, but it’s a hit-or-miss game. Products that work well for some aren’t effective for others or even stop working over time, and it can be tiresome to find the right match for you.
Enter Picnic. This subscription-based telehealth company develops allergist-picked, personalized treatment plans based on your specific triggers and symptoms, and it delivers them right to your door. How effective is Picnic? We tested it out and detailed our research and experiences below to help you decide if Picnic is the allergy solution for you.
- Provides both prescription and OTC medications
- Accepts HSA and FSA cards
- “Care team” comprised of licensed physicians and allergists
- Personalized treatment addresses your specific triggers and symptoms
- Home delivery is time-saving and convenient
- Pricing is comparable to drug stores and online retailers
- Introductory offer for new customers: 20% off your first 3 orders
- Targeted at allergic rhinitis–doesn’t treat all forms of allergies
- Does not accept insurance
- No shipping outside of the U.S.
- These and other prescription medications via telehealth are not legal in all states
If you suffer from environmental, seasonal, or pet allergies like many of us, we highly recommend Picnic, which takes the guesswork out of shopping for effective allergy relief. Picnic provides several additional services, including one-on-one doctor consultations, prescriptions, and advice on coping with specific symptoms. Best of all, Picnic’s pricing is comparable to traditional pharmacies (but doesn’t require an in-person visit).
With a staff of licensed allergists and a wide variety of treatments, you’re in good hands with Picnic -- and the 20% discount on your first three orders is a breath of fresh air.
Picnic takes the headache out of allergy treatment by providing personalized treatment plans devised by their team of highly qualified allergists and delivering the right mix of medications to your door.
Innerbody Research recently celebrated its 20-year anniversary online. Over the past two decades, we have helped tens of millions of readers make more informed decisions involving staying healthy and living healthier lifestyles
We extensively test each health service we review. We try our best to give you, our readers, an unbiased exploration of at-home health services, free of marketing jargon or gimmicks. We evaluate the service based on our adherence to quality, the latest medical evidence and health standards, and a simple question: would we buy the product or service ourselves if it weren’t part of our job, and would we recommend it to family and friends?
Additionally, this review of Picnic, like all health-related content on this website, was thoroughly vetted by one or more members of our Medical Review Board for accuracy.
Picnic is a subscription-based health and wellness company that provides individuals with custom allergy treatment plans and delivers medications to your doorstep. Picnic provides OTC medications as well as prescription-strength treatments under the consultation of its licensed physicians and allergists. These medications and remedies offer relief from allergic rhinitis, also known as hay fever, and consist of antihistamines, nasal sprays, eye drops, and steroid treatments.
Thirty Madison is the parent company of Picnic as well as Keeps, Cove, and Evens, which are all dedicated to holistic support for Americans with chronic health conditions. Thirty Madison’s services and products are highly rated across the industry and provide accessibility and convenience to customers through its proprietary telehealth platform.
How does it work?
Picnic’s treatments are specifically focused on allergic rhinitis, which affects more than 20 million adults and can have many triggers, including tree and grass pollen, mold spores, cockroaches, dust mites, and pet dander. Seasonal allergies (like hay fever) are a form of allergic rhinitis triggered by environmental changes at different times of the year.
Picnic’s approach to treating allergic rhinitis includes the use of prescription and OTC medications. To purchase prescription medications, you will need to complete a brief video consultation with a medical professional from Picnic’s Care Team before you can check out. This consultation takes place online via video chat and typically takes 10 minutes. In addition to gathering information about your medical history and allergy symptoms, your physician will advise you on how to take any medication(s) they prescribe and provide additional resources as needed. Consultations are completed within 24 hours, when you will then receive an email that you are ready to check out.
All Picnic doctors are licensed in the states where they operate, and they typically complete consultations within a few hours. Note that telehealth services are not currently legal in all areas. If your state prohibits medication prescription from telehealth providers, you can still order OTC products from Picnic
Picnic offers several treatments for allergic rhinitis, including antihistamines, nasal sprays, eye drops, and natural remedies. All Picnic products are generic medications that range from $5 to $58 for a monthly supply. If your prescription requires a doctor’s consultation, the cost is $5 for the consultation fee, which you only need to pay once per year.
As a subscription service, Picnic will auto-refill and ship your medications every one or three months, depending on your preference. Ordering three-month supplies saves you significantly more money. For example, we ordered a three-month supply of the prescription drug desloratadine, or generic Clarinex, for $63, which is 30% less than purchasing it in one-month bottles for $30 each.
Picnic offers 11 OTC and prescription allergic rhinitis treatments in tablet, capsule, eye-drop, and nasal spray forms. We’ve listed the one-month supply prices here, but it’s important to note that purchasing medications in three-month quantities offers significant savings. If you know you will need them on an ongoing basis, it makes sense to opt for a subscription plan.
Desloratadine (generic Clarinex) $30
Desloratadine is a 24-hour prescription-strength, non-drowsy antihistamine providing relief from sneezing, sniffly nose, and itchy, watery eyes
Fexofenadine (generic Allegra) $21
Fexofenadine is a non-prescription, non-drowsy antihistamine providing relief from itching, sneezing, and a runny nose. It lasts 24 hours.
Diphenhydramine (generic Benadryl Allergy) $13
Diphenhydramine is a commonly used OTC antihistamine that relieves itching, watery eyes, scratchy throat, and a runny nose. It can be taken several times daily but is best taken at bedtime, as it induces sleepiness.
Loratadine (generic Claritin) $16
Loratadine is taken once daily and provides 24-hour relief from itching, sneezing, and a runny nose.
Cetirizine (generic Zyrtec) $16
Cetirizine is a 24-hour, fast-acting antihistamine providing relief from sneezing, runny nose, and itchy eyes.
Intra Nasal Sprays
Fluticasone (generic Flonase) $22
Fluticasone is a prescription-strength steroid nasal spray that combats hard-to-treat nasal congestion and eye-related issues.
Azelastine nasal spray (generic Astelin) -- $44
Azelastine is a prescription-strength antihistamine nasal spray that addresses runny noses and post-nasal drip.
Mometasone (generic Nasonex) -- $58
Mometasone is another prescription-strength steroid nasal spray relieving hard-to-treat nasal symptoms and inflammation.
Azelastine eye drops (generic Optivar) are prescription-strength eye drops for treating itchy, watery eyes. At Picnic, they cost $26.
Honey-lemon throat lozenges -- $8
These lozenges provide relief from sore throats with a soothing honey-lemon flavor.
Saline nasal spray -- $5
This saline nasal spray is naturally effective in washing away allergens from your nasal passages.
Trying Picnic for the first time or setting up a subscription is easy and convenient on the company’s website. New customers will need to complete the following steps:
Complete the quiz. This step is optional but helpful if you’re unsure what treatments you need. On the homepage, click on the prominent “Take the Quiz” link. This brief questionnaire asks about your allergy symptoms and their severity, what seasons trigger you the most and what time(s) of the year, and what treatments you’ve tried in the past and are open to going forward. After you’ve completed the quiz, Picnic presents you with recommended treatments. You can continue to the checkout from here, or you can continue to browse Picnic’s complete product list.
Browse products. If you’d like to pick and choose your medications rather than completing the quiz, you can click the “Shop All” link at the top of the homepage to add individual products to your cart. Note that all prescription-grade medications will require a brief online consultation with a licensed medical professional from Picnic’s Care Team, which costs a $5 one-time annual fee. Not all states have legalized and regulated telehealth prescriptions, but if consultation is unavailable in your area, you can still order OTC medications from Picnic.
Checkout. Complete the form with your shipping address and payment information. Picnic accepts major credit cards as well as debit cards associated with HSA and FSA. Upon placing your order, you agree to sign up for a Picnic subscription, and your credit card will be charged upon each subscription shipment, should you opt to get your medications auto-shipped every 1 or 3 months. You can cancel or modify your subscription at any time by contacting customer support.
Complete a doctor consultation (if necessary). If Picnic has recommended a prescription-grade medication, you’ll need to complete a brief (usually 10-minute) online doctor consultation to obtain a prescription and complete your order. The annual fee required for prescription medications and consultations is $5.
Await shipment. Once you’ve placed your order, it will ship in 1-2 business days. It should then arrive in 3-5 business days.
Assess your satisfaction. Start using your treatments as prescribed, and adjust your subscriptions as needed (you can cancel, switch medications, or change your automatic delivery’s frequency to either every 1 or 3 months at any time except when an order is in process). Although Picnic legally cannot accept returns of individually packaged medications, even if unopened, the company will replace items if they are defective or damaged. Contact Picnic’s customer service team for assistance at email@example.com. You can also use this contact to modify, adjust, or terminate your subscription.
Picnic collects information from users who create or modify an account or register to use the website. The company collects non-personally identifiable information from users via cookies and other technologies and uses it to improve the site and for marketing purposes.
Picnic does not trade, rent, or sell personal information to third parties. It may share your personal information with its affiliated healthcare providers for services related to your diagnosis and treatment, with vendors and service providers for order processing, or to comply with legal obligations.
Picnic accepts debit cards associated with HSA and FSA accounts for payment. Unfortunately, it does not accept insurance for doctor consultations or prescription drug deliveries as it is an entirely self-pay service.
At Innerbody Research, we customize our evaluation criteria depending on the type and nature of the health-related service or product. For Picnic and other health companies, we have five areas that we use for our evaluations, including:
Quality: How well does the company deliver its core service(s) to the customer? For testing services, does the company adhere to the latest and most advanced testing technologies and achieve a very high degree of accuracy? For non-testing telehealth services, is the quality of the service high enough that we would recommend it to loved ones without hesitation? If not, why not?
User-friendly: How intuitive and user-friendly is the service? Does the device, program, app, or website achieve a good degree of user-friendliness for its customers?
Value: Are you getting your money’s worth? Are there any hidden costs or charges? Does the company offer discounts
Privacy: If health data is stored, will your data be stored securely? Are payments secure?
Customer support: Particularly in situations where ‘one size fits all’ doesn’t make sense, how well does the company help to make the service ideal for you?