Printing digital pictures

One can obtain a color printer and print digital pictures using it. This is probably the fastest way to get prints from your digital pictures, but it may not be the best. Here are some considerations:
You can use cheap paper, but the results are not very good. A good quality, high brightness, photo paper is significantly more expensive than bulk copier paper.
They sell the color ink-jet printers cheap, hoping to sell you expensive ink. And the standard ink isn't color-fast... it will fade over time, especially quickly in the sunlight. Fine, you can print them again, but that's more expensive ink to buy. You can buy cheap ink, but it is no better... and you can buy even more expensive archival inks, which, together with special papers from the same manufacturer, are expected to have a lifetime of 30-40 years. That's pretty good, but also pretty expensive. Do the math before you buy the printer.

OK, so you've decided an ink-jet printer is expensive for printing pictures, and the math looks better for color lasers, even though the printer itself is much more expensive. I agree. But the quality isn't great on color lasers. Yes, you can get legible prints, but the colors aren't often accurate. You make your own judgement on the quality... just evaluate it with a few of your pictures -- not the sample prints from the manufacturer... and evaluate it before you buy the printer.
Service bureaus
Since you've done the math on the paper, ink, and toner costs, compare it to prices from Costco, Sam's Club, Wal*Mart,, and before you make the final decision. In every evaluation I've done, Costco and Sam's Club are the neck-and-neck winners in terms of cost and turnaround time. Of course, there are lots of other service bureaus, and sometimes they run special pricing deals, and sometimes those beat Costco and Sam's Club. It should also be noted that, Sam's Club, and all have a "photo center" to which you can upload digital pictures, and have them printed at the nearest store, or have them mailed to you. I'm a Costco member, and have been very pleased with their service and picture quality. I really don't know anything about the quality of the Sam's Club and Wal*Mart services, having never used them, but they look comprehensive and competitvely priced. For keeping website-based albums to share with your friends, if not all are Costco members, webshots is the only one to offer free downloading of fullsize images, as far as I know.