Ways to Reduce Printing Costs

‘Tis the world of digital today but how tech-savvy are we, really? We’ve moved from desktops to laptops, laptops to tablets, phones to smartphones, yet we haven’t quite gone paperless. Old habits die hard, they say. The habit of printing everything that we need to read is a tad difficult to give up but it isn’t impossible. The average paper consumption each year comes to about 1000 sheets per year per office worker and that’s one too many. The amount of expenditure incurred on printing each year is exorbitant and can be reduced drastically by adopting some very basic practices. Read on as we share some tips to help you reduce printing costs.


  1. Think twice: Printing is not an absolute necessity every time your fingers strike the Ctrl+P keys. Print only when absolutely necessary. When you need to print only a part of your document, use the Print Selection feature. If you need selections from different pages, you can also print multiple selections to one page
  1. Switch to compatible cartridges: Compatible cartridges are manufactured by recycling empty cartridges and are as much as at least 50% cheaper as compared to OEM toner cartridges.
  1. Swap digital for paper: Print to PDF in place of paper.  An electronic print of a document provides convenience of use. You do not need to take care of physical copies of reports or any other documents. Electronic prints are eco-friendly, wallet-friendly and easy to handle.
  1. Manage fonts: Some fonts on the computer are known to use more ink while printing due to their style and structure. By merely switching the default printing font to one of the lighter fonts, you can save a substantial chunk of money each year. Here are some examples:
  • The Century Gothic font uses 31% less toner than Arial.
  • The Times New Roman 29% less ink.
  • Calibri uses 29% lesser ink.
  • Verdana saves hardly any ink at 8% less. 
  1. Do Duplex: Duplex, or printing on both sides of the paper, is an effective way to reduce your consumption of paper each month. Most printers these days allow for duplex printing. However, if your printer does not support this function, the amount of money you’d save on paper in duplex printing should be enough of a motivation to get a new printer that allows for duplex printing.
  1. Go mono: Using monochrome or black and white prints is also an effective way to save printing costs. Not all documents that we print require colour prints. Colour printing can be restricted to a certain number of pages per day by setting up a colour print quota. This will make people consider before hitting print.
  1. Do drafts: The draft output feature is a useful tactic to save money on printing ink and paper. Draft output restricts printing to only text, limited formatting and no pictures. This is useful when you are in the habit of reading only using hard copies while reviewing for grammar and structuring. Keeping the default printer setting to rough draft or fast draft, based on your printer type, can help cut down on ink and paper costs drastically. The average print resolution settings are at 600 DPI. Changing this to 300DPI brings down cartridge usage to half.
  1. Reduce waste: Before you hit print, ensure that you have added everything that’s needed to your document and done a spell check. Often times, we tend to hit print and then realise that we missed a word or punctuation and then discard the print copy. Proofread your document and be frugal. Think of the cost you incur each time you hit print. As a best practice, do a print preview and knock off any unnecessary clutter before you print.
  1. Save paper: Often, we need to print documents where merely a line or two of text flow onto the next page. Instead of printing your document with that, use the Shrink to Fit option. This feature will help fit all your text on one page and save paper. Reducing margins in your document also helps reduce paper wastage.