I am currently a member of Amazon Prime and have been for a full year. This post contains affiliate links; however, all opinions and recommendations are my own.
Last year I went shopping for Christmas presents for my nieces and nephews. As I loaded one box onto the scale at the post office, I was quote more than $40 to ship it. I had two more boxes going to other houses sitting at my feet waiting to get weighed and processed.
In all, I had to drop a serious amount of cash just to ship presents that I had bought for the holidays. I left feeling completely disgusted and a bit used.
I was determined to find a more cost-effective way to save money while being able to ship gifts to my relatives throughout the year. There were still plenty of birthdays to come!
What I didn’t understand at the time was I as on a journey to simplifying my life and purchasing habits with Amazon Prime.
What Are the Benefits of Amazon Prime?
Amazon Prime’s key benefit is its free 2-day shipping on eligible orders. Although Amazon does offer free shipping on most orders of $25+, you have to wait 5-10 business days for your order to arrive.
I don’t know about you but I rarely plan that far in advance or have the luxury of waiting a week for something I need. I figured I would sign up and easily recoup my shipping fees and more. What I didn’t understand was how it would positively change my purchasing power and time.
An Amazon Prime membership will cost $99 per year. It seems like a hefty price tag but I quickly recouped that cost and more. You can start with a one-month FREE trial (perfect for the holidays), or if you’re a student or a parent, the Amazon Student and Amazon Mom programs offer other benefits.
Other benefits of Amazon Prime include:
- FREE Two-Day Shipping on eligible items to addresses in the contiguous U.S. and other shipping benefits.
- Prime Instant Video: Unlimited streaming of movies and TV episodes for paid or free trial members in the U.S. and Puerto Rico.
- Prime Music: Unlimited, ad-free access to hundreds of Prime Playlists and more than a million songs for members in the U.S. and Puerto Rico.
- NEW! Prime Photos: Secure unlimited photo storage in Amazon Cloud Drive.
- Prime Early Access: Get 30-minute early access to select Lightning Deals on Amazon.com and new events on MyHabit.com.
- Kindle Owners’ Lending Library: U.S. members read free books each month through Kindle First and the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library. (FYI – Kindle books work on Kindles, all kind of tablets and your computer.)
- Kindle First: Early access for members in the U.S. to download a new book for free every month from the Kindle First picks.
- Prime Pantry: Access to Prime Pantry, where members can purchase and ship to addresses in the continental U.S. low priced grocery, household, and pet care items for a flat delivery fee of $5.99 for each Prime Pantry box.
Is an Amazon Prime Membership Worth It?
Ask yourself these questions:
- Shipping. Have you spent more than $99 in shipping fees over the last year?
- Gas. How much gas money have you spent running to the store for items you could easily have shipped to your house. With free shipping, you don’t waste gas or your time running around town for household items.
- Reading. If you purchased eight full-price Kindle e-books last year that are available in the Kindle lending library, you’d save more money by just borrowing them.
- Diapers. Do you have a child still in diapers or pull-ups? With the Amazon Mom membership, you save 20% off diapers, which will all know can seriously dent a budget.
- Instant video. Amazon Prime is cheaper than both Hulu Plus and Netflix, and if the video selection is enough that you’d consider forgoing a subscription to either of those two services, you’ll have recouped the cost. A $7.99 per month Netflix subscription works out to $95.88 per year, which makes the $99 Amazon Prime membership seem cheap by comparison.Either way, you can cut down on your cable bill letting go of additional channels and use streaming instead.
- Unbeatable deals. Do you like getting the best deals? Many of Amazon’s Lightning Deals run out of stock before the clock runs out on the deal. Amazon Prime members get early access to these deals to get the best price.
For me, I found the amount of time I saved running around town as well as the saved gas made the Amazon Prime Membership absolutely worth it.
Just this week I ordered a new furnace filter and some school supplies, leaving me with more time for my family. Add in the savings on diapers, and I get giddy just thinking about the savings!
I originally thought I wouldn’t really use the other benefits but I’ve found myself scanning the latest shows and movies through Amazon. And with the holidays, I find myself pulling up the free holiday playlists to listen at my computer (which I’m actually listening to right now).
And if you’re thinking of finding the perfect gift for someone, an Amazon Prime membership is quite the present!