Best Affordable Magazines to Subscribe in 2020

Social media can be a great source of news in 2020. Unfortunately, the spread of fake news has become a serious issue, especially on these platforms. Magazine subscriptions are a great way to become more informed on a wide variety of topics. Although print journalism is said to be slowly dying, there are still plenty of magazines that regularly publish paper issues. Most subscriptions offer digital versions for a great price. However, nothing can beat the sleek feel of a physical magazine. Some subscriptions make the price of a single issue cost less than a fancy beer on a night out.

The New Yorker

For 95 years, The New Yorker has been a weekly source of information. What was once a local publication is now popular all over the world. The New Yorker will catch you up on the usual politics and news, but it also has a great culture section. It is well known for its beautifully illustrated and often topical covers. Although there are sections that focus on the cultural life specifically of New York City, the magazine offers something for everyone. The New Yorker offers commentaries on popular culture as well eccentric Americana. It brings attention to modern fictional writing and includes literary reviews as well as short stories.

For just $12 for 12 weeks, people in the US can get the printed magazine as well as access to the digital version. Internationally, you can subscribe for the same price of $12 for 12 weeks to get unlimited access to the digital version only. This is a great way to get a taste of the magazine and see if you’d like an annual subscription. It only costs $49 to get an annual unlimited digital subscription, which includes the online archive and crossword puzzles.



Discover is a relatively new magazine compared to the others on this list. It was founded in 1980 and created by TIME magazine editor Leon Jaroff. Originally, the magazine featured in-depth science coverage and avoided topics such as extraterrestrial intelligence. Though it started out featuring essays by well-known scientists and biographical pieces about people in the science community, it now features a myriad of other topics. Today there are many light-hearted pieces that make science interesting for everyone.

An annual print plus digital subscription to Discover costs $29.95 if you are located in the USA and $43.95 internationally. Alternatively, you can get a print only subscription for $19.95 in the USA and $33.95 elsewhere. The digital version alone is available for $19.95 no matter where you are. It is even cheaper if you sign up for two years: $49.95 in the USA and $77.95 internationally for both digital and print. Discover also offers fun additions to your subscription for an extra cost including Einstein’s Universe and Strange Science magazine.

Girl lying on the couch reading a magazine
Many of the periodics offer a printed version of their magazines…


New York Times

Founded in 1851, the New York Times should not be confused with The New Yorker. While both originated in the same city, they are separate entities. The New York Times slogan is “All the News That’s Fit to Print.” The paper has won 130 Pulitzer Prizes, which is more than any other newspaper. It is ranked as the 18th most circulated paper worldwide and 3rd in the U.S. While the layout of the publication has changed with modern times, it was one of the last papers to incorporate color photography.

Similarly to The New Yorker, you can subscribe to the New York Times for $1 per week for unlimited digital access. This is billed every four weeks for $4. For the print version of the paper, the price depends on your zip code. You can get the international price options here. There are several different types of home-delivery options: weekly, three-day, weekday, and daily. In the USA the prices range between $5 and $10 per week. There are special discounts for students and teachers.


Psychology Today

The subject of psychology is not only fascinating, but understanding the basics can have an impact on your daily life. That is why Psychology Today is a great way to learn about a range of topics that include psychology, neuroscience, relationships, sexuality, parenting, and work. When it comes to health, Psychology Today explores the perspectives of alternative medicine. They also cover the psychological aspects of current affairs. Basically, there’s something for everyone.

You can get a subscription to Psychology Today quite affordably. The magazine publishes every two months, so the six-issue subscription is for one whole year. It costs $19.97 in the USA and $29.99 internationally. Alternatively, a 12-issue subscription costs $29.97 in the USA and $49.99 internationally. Finally, an 18-issue subscription costs $39.97 in the USA and $69.99 internationally.


National Geographic

This magazine started publishing monthly issues in 1888. Its articles focus mainly on science, geography, history, and world culture. It has nearly 40 local-language editions because of its international popularity. As of 2015, it had a global circulation of approximately 6.5 million per month.

National Geographic is available in a traditional print edition as well as through an interactive online edition. For those in the U.S., an annual subscription costs as little as $12 for digital only and $19 for print plus digital. Internationally, the costs go up to $49 for an annual print subscription. All subscriptions include unlimited digital access to content, full online archive and more.

Man reading news online
…or they offer a digital subscription. Eventually both


TIME is yet another magazine that has its roots in New York City. Founded in 1923, it has the world’s largest circulation for a weekly news magazine. The print edition has an impressive readership of 26 million. Originally, the proposed title for the magazine was Facts, but the founders decided to go with TIME and the slogan “Take Time – It’s Brief.” The goal was to create a concise yet informative paper that a busy person could read in just an hour.

You can give the weekly TIME subscription a chance by trying out 12 weeks for $12. If you are in the U.S., this includes the print as well as the digital version. The annual subscription is $40, making it just 77 cents per issue. Internationally, you can get an annual print plus digital subscription for $135. Currently this comes with a free aqua speaker. For digital access only, you only pay $65 for 52 issues. All subscriptions include special issues, TIME 100, and the magazine’s archive.



The world’s foremost international weekly scientific journal, Nature, was founded in 1869 in London. Nature is a flagship journal for nature research, publishing the finest peer-reviewed research in all fields of science and technology. It has an online readership of about 3 million unique readers per month.

A subscription to Nature is not the cheapest when it comes to annual fees. But even at full price, one issue costs significantly less than any Vogue, or a cocktail. For $199 you can get an annual subscription to print and digital content. That means that the cost for each of the 51 issues is $3.90. For students and postdoc graduates, the price is lowered to $119 annually.


We are living in a world where we have access to unlimited information at the touch of our fingertips. However, not everything we read online is accurate, factual, or written in an engaging way. That is why many people love to get their knowledge from subscriptions to magazines. Luckily, these are usually available in both print and digital format. While digital subscriptions are cheaper and are better for the environment, reading from a physical magazine is a completely different experience. It is amazing that in today’s world, we can get them delivered to our doors for as little as the price of a cocktail.

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