Anja Webb | 

Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, Or Netflix: Which is the Best Deal?

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Here’s an obvious truth: video streaming is in, and traditional cable plans are out. But with new streaming services popping up every day, it’s hard to know which provides the best bang for your buck. The industry was previously dominated by Netflix and Hulu, but Amazon Prime Video has become increasingly popular.

Amazon has made a case for itself as a major competitor in the streaming game, with more content than Hulu and opportunities to watch some of the hottest entertainment like the Taylor Swift Era Tour. Plus it comes with all the crazy benefits of being a Prime member. As services like Netflix and Disney Plus raise prices, how do you know which one to go for?

We’re breaking down the different features Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime video offer, as well as comparing prices and making their different membership tiers easy to understand. That way you can decide which subscription is the best deal for you.

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1. Is Hulu free with Amazon Prime?

ROku screen with different streaming apps like hulu and amazon prime video available

No. Hulu and Amazon Prime are competitors, so their subscriptions aren’t interchangeable.

You can download the Hulu app on Amazon Prime for free. But you won’t be able to watch anything unless you pay for a Hulu subscription.


2. Amazon Prime Video is the cheapest ad-free streaming service.

price comparison for streaming service plans without ads from hulu, amazon prime video, and netflix

Hulu and Netflix charge you a monthly rate, not an annual fee. On the other hand, Amazon Prime Video is included with your Amazon Prime account.

As a refresher, you can pay for Prime monthly or annually, and the price per month is different depending on which payment plan you opt for. I did the math and it’s $40.88 cheaper to pay the annual rate instead of the monthly. So if you can swing that $139 upfront fee, the monthly cost actually goes down to $11.58.

So while the $139 upfront feels more expensive, it’s the cheapest ad-free streaming service. Netflix (standard plan, no ads) is about 33.7% more expensive than Prime. Hulu’s ad-free plan is the most expensive of the three.


3. Netflix offers the cheapest streaming service with ads.

price comparison for streaming service plans with ads from hulu and netflix

If you don’t care about ads and just want the lowest price possible, go for Netflix. It’s a dollar cheaper monthly than Hulu’s plan with ads. And, of the three major streaming plans, it’s the least expensive. Besides, commercial breaks are perfect for grabbing a snack or running to the bathroom during movie marathons.


4. Hulu is the only streaming service that offers bundles.

price comparison for hulu bundles

Lots of people ask: is there a Disney Plus bundle on Amazon Prime Video? While Prime Video has lots of other add-on subscriptions, like Starz, Paramount Plus, and HBO Max, there’s no way to add the Disney/Hulu/ESPN bundle.

There are three different value bundles available with Hulu. The cheapest offers Disney, Hulu, and ESPN all with ads for 44% less than if you were to subscribe to each streaming service individually.

The mid-range plan has ad-free Disney and Hulu alongside ESPN with ads for 41% cheaper.

The most expensive plan has Live TV, Disney, Hulu, and ESPN all with ads. There’s not an individual subscription cost comparison since cable prices vary hugely depending on the provider and package. And there are tons of different cable providers depending on where you live.

If you’re not sure if this plan works for you, opt for a free trial.


5. Hulu and Amazon Prime Video both have free 30-day trials; Netflix does not.

Someone sitting on a couch, pointing a remote at a TV with the Amazon prime video app opening

Right now, Amazon wants to get you hooked, so they’re giving you 30 days of Prime membership for free. This is a great way to check out Prime’s TV and movie streaming offerings. Hulu also has a 30-day free trial, but Netflix got rid of its free trial in 2021.


6. You can cancel Amazon Prime immediately and still enjoy the full free trial.

a person looking at prime student on their iphone

Worried you’ll forget to cancel and get charged for your Amazon Prime membership? Cancel right away, and you still get to enjoy the benefits of the full free trial.

If you don’t cancel (or forget to before the 30 days are up), congratulations — you’re now a proud Prime member. Amazon automatically charges after the free trial. Same with Hulu and Netflix.


7. Get six months of Amazon Prime for free with the student discount.

a college student on a laptop in college campus

Amazon offers six months of Amazon Prime free for college students, and then it’s either $7.49 per month or $69 per year. This includes Amazon Prime Video and all their other services.

By comparison, Hulu offers a college student rate of $1.99 per month, or you can get Hulu as part of the Spotify Premium college student discount ($4.99 per month). If you’re not eligible for the six-month free trial of Prime Student, then Hulu is the cheapest option for students.

Netflix doesn’t have any discounts for students.

RELATED: 12 College Freebies You Need to Know About



8. Amazon Prime Video gives you the most profiles and screens for no extra charge.

tv screen in living room showing various amazon prime video profiles

Amazon Prime Video gives you six profiles that can stream three screens simultaneously, and two of those screens can watch the same show or movie.

Hulu will give you six profiles but only allows you to stream two screens simultaneously. You can purchase the Unlimited Screens which will give you unlimited screens when you’re linked to a home network but only three screens outside the home network.

Netflix will only give you two profiles and streaming from two screens at the Standard level, regardless of whether or not you opt for ads. The Premium level gives you four screens.


9. Prime Video subscribers get 7-day free trials to Showtime, AMC Plus, Starz, and more.

Amazon prime on tablet

While Prime Video has a bunch of original content, one of the biggest perks is that you can subscribe to a number of popular services as an add-on. You can add each of these services to your Prime Video account and enjoy a 7-day free trial:

  • Is AMC Plus free with Amazon Prime?: After the trial, it’ll cost $4.99 per month with ads
  • Is Britbox free with Amazon Prime?: After the trial, it’ll cost $8.99 per month
  • Is Brown Sugar free with Amazon Prime?: After the trial, it’ll cost $3.99 per month
  • Is Cinemax free with Amazon Prime?: After the trial, it’ll cost $9.99 per month
  • Is Discovery Plus free with Amazon Prime?: After the trial, it’ll cost $4.99 per month
  • Is Epix free with Amazon Prime?: After the trial, it’ll cost $5.99 per month
  • Is Hallmark Movies Now free with Amazon Prime?: After the trial, it’ll cost $5.99 per month
  • Is Paramount Plus free with Amazon Prime?: After the trial, it’ll cost $11.99 per month
  • Is PBS Documentaries free with Amazon Prime?: After the trial, it’ll cost $3.99 per month
  • Is Showtime free with Amazon Prime?: After the trial, it’ll cost $11.99 per month
  • Is Starz free with Amazon Prime?: After the trial, it’ll cost $9.99 per month
  • Is Sundance Now free with Amazon Prime?: After the trial, it’ll cost $6.99 per month
  • Is Noggin free with Amazon Prime?: After the 30-day trial, it’ll cost $7.99 per month


10. Get a taste of Amazon Prime Video content on their free-to-everyone page.

Amazon prime on laptop

If you have an Amazon account, you can browse through the free IMDb TV library on Amazon Prime Video. The selection changes often but as of publication, their collection includes Men in Black, Sailor Moon, The Shape of Water, and Hotel Transylvania.

All you have to do is have a free Amazon account; no need to purchase a Prime account or a Prime Video subscription. Just note that there are ads.


11. Amazon Fire Stick’s free channel list includes ABC, NBC, and more.

fire tv stick 4k being held

Unlike Netflix and Hulu, Amazon also sells a Fire Stick (regularly $29.99 – $54.99) and the Fire TV Cube ($139.99), a device that attaches to your TV via HDMI cable connection and makes it into a smart TV. You can download several free apps that can get you free TV, such as ABC, NBC, CBS, and Fox, but there’s a limit on how much you can watch for each app.

You can also download Netflix, Hulu, and other streaming service apps, but you’ll need to purchase a separate subscription to gain access to those services.



12. You can rent and buy videos through Amazon Prime Video.

A person sitting on a couch with their feet up, pointing a remote at a TV with the Prime Video TV app's start-up screen displayed.

If you aren’t finding a title available through your Amazon Prime Video subscription, you also have the option of purchasing movies and TV shows through Amazon. Rentals last for 48 hours, and purchasing content will give you the purchased content forever.

If you just want to watch shows and movies that are free to you, make sure to put that in your filter options so you won’t be disappointed.

The rental and buying option is available to everyone — not just Amazon Prime members. But if you’re an Amazon Prime member, you can get discounts on select movies and shows — up to 50%.


13. Pausing most Amazon Prime Videos brings up ‘X-Ray’ — which lets you learn more about the video you’re watching.

Amazon Prime Video’s X-Ray feature gives you trivia, easter eggs, and bonus videos related to the movie or shows you’re watching. Plus, it has a neat feature on select titles that allows you to add products to your cart that you see in the movie.

This feature is only available on select movies, series, and sports, so if you want to take advantage, be sure to check out which ones are available.


14. Adjust your subtitles with Amazon Prime Video and Hulu.

Only Netflix doesn’t allow you to adjust the subtitles on videos. Both Amazon Prime Video and Hulu allow you to change the size, background color, or opacity of the text. All you have to do is check the subtitle menu while you are turning them on, and they will give you a set of options and styles to choose from.



15. Prime Video is the only streaming service that comes with free 2-day shipping (and more).

amazon packages and boxes on front porch

Is Audible free with Amazon Prime? Is Amazon Music free with Prime? Yes (for 30 days, and then it’s $7.95 per month), and yes. Where Netflix and Hulu are just TV streaming services, Amazon Prime offers added benefits like free 2-day shipping, free unlimited photo storage, Prime Gaming, and more.

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