We're reader-supported and only partner with brands we trust. When you buy through links on our site we may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. Learn More. Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date and time indicated and are subject to change.

Just when you thought you knew everything about Amazon Prime shopping, I’m here to throw more perks at you. (You’re welcome.)

Don’t worry: you won’t find free shipping and free Prime Video access on this list — everyone knows about those. Instead, I’m going after the lesser-known features on Amazon, along with hacks to get the most out of your Prime shopping experience.

Read on for ways to get free Amazon credits, make Amazon returns painless, and more.

Then, use your newfound knowledge to prepare for Amazon Prime Day and other Black Friday in July sales.

Download the KCL app to see current Amazon deals and Prime Day deals.

TIP: This is also an option for birthdays! Create an Amazon Birthday Gift List to make it easier for relatives to send gifts to your kids.

 

1. Pay monthly for Prime unless you want it for more than nine months.

A woman sitting with a laptop on her lap, browsing amazon.com

Seems like a backwards way to start, but if you only shop Amazon during the holidays, you just want Prime Day access, or you only want to binge watch Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, switch to a monthly Prime membership.

With the monthly plan, Prime is $14.99 a month. A lot cheaper than $139 a year, but only if you’ll use Prime for less than nine months. At the nine month mark, it’s cheaper to pay annually.

Cancel your monthly Prime membership and start it up again whenever.

TIP: Your first month of Prime is free! Be sure to take advantage of the free Prime trial offer.

 

2. College students get 50% off Amazon Prime membership.

A student sitting in grass on campus with their laptop and some books.

There are plenty of great perks for your college student if they join Amazon Prime Student:

  • 50% off Prime membership.
  • Amazon Music Unlimited for just $0.99 a month.
  • Access to deals on essentials for students like computers, snacks, and clothing.

 

3. Utilize government programs? You can get 50% off, too.

The 50% off membership offer also applies to people who are on certain government programs like:

  • SSI.
  • WIC.
  • SNAP (formerly known as food stamps.)
  • LIHEAP.
  • Medicaid.
  • TANF.
  • TTANF.
  • A Direct Express card.
  • National School Lunch Program.

You can sign up for this discount here.

 

4. Find Amazon Prime shopping deals in the “Just for Prime” section.

A screenshot of the Amazon home page with a drop down menu, highlighting the Just for Prime option.

Yes, there are special deals just for Prime members! To find it, use Amazon’s search dropdown to shop “Just for Prime” offers.

 

5. Save up to 65% when you shop Amazon Outlet.

A woman sitting with a laptop on her lap, with Amazon Outlet displayed on the screen.

Check out Amazon Outlet to get deep discounts on just about anything you’re looking for. I’m talking about furniture, fashion, electronics, grocery, and more.

You’ll find overstocked and out-of-season items. I found stuff for up to 66% off last time I checked. For example, I found a $40 Ambertronix lighted selfie stick for around $13. That’s 66% off!

 

6. Shop Amazon Warehouse deals for up to 50% off used items.

A person's hand holding a tube of Neutrogena Rapid Wrinkle Repair in front of an Echo Dot box, a kitchen utensil and an Amazon delivery box sitting on a table.

Amazon Warehouse deals offer high-quality (some opened or used – but not all) products like TVs, tablets, cameras, home appliances, makeup, lawn and garden items, and fitness equipment. Shop now.

For example, I saw a previously opened air fryer marked down to $57.79. Normally, it sells for $119.99.

Here’s how to find the best Amazon Warehouse deals.

 

7. Drop off your Amazon returns at Kohl’s.

Take advantage of free Amazon returns at Kohl's.

Sure you can still drop your Amazon return off at UPS for free, but you know what’s even easier? Take it into a Kohl’s store and don’t bother with boxing it up at all.

To make an Amazon return at Kohl’s, open the Amazon app and follow this process: My Orders → Return or Replace Items → Reason for Return → Select Kohl’s Dropoff.

Amazon will send a QR code to your email. The QR code is essential for processing your Kohl’s Amazon return — you’ll show it to the Kohl’s associate when you hand over your items.

 

8. Get free stuff from the Amazon Treasure Truck if it’s in your neighborhood.

Amazon treasure truck and cartoon drawings of how it works.

via amazon

 

The Amazon Treasure Truck isn’t in every area yet, but you’re lucky if you’re one of 30 or so cities with it.

It’s a truck that delivers one handpicked item to the community by parking food-truck style and sending out a text. (During COVID-19, they’re sending text alerts about offers that you can click and order, shipped.)

To opt in, text “TRUCK” to 24193. Amazon will text you daily updates so you know what items are on a treasure truck in your hometown. You can find everything from succulents to turkeys to skin care products. It’s random, but fun.

Some past Treasure Truck deals and freebies:

  • Sony Wireless On-Ear Headphones $39.99 (42% off regular price!)
  • Free RX Bars
  • Free Neutrogena Hydro Boost samples
  • One 4.5 pound bag of M&M’s (regularly $25) and a free pumpkin for $10

 

9. Use Amazon Subscribe & Save to save 15%.

amazon-glad-trash-bags-box-subscribe-and-save2020

Amazon Subscribe & Save gives you the opportunity to set up regular, recurring orders for household goods. Examples include cleaning supplies, trash bags, groceries, and laundry detergent.

Here’s where the savings comes in:

  • Get 10% off if you have 4 or less subscriptions.
  • Get 15% off if you have 5 or more subscriptions.

Each subscription has to be for a separate item, so you can’t order five bananas and get the 15% discount. You’d only get 10% off. To get the 15% off, you’d have to order bananas, flour, milk, laundry detergent and Mr. Clean Magic Erasers. Or any other five unique items. Shop now.

TIP: We keep tabs on Amazon Subscribe & Save Deals. Make sure to follow along to maximize your savings.

 

10. Pre-order new books, movies and more and get them instantly upon release.

Amazon app with blu-ray release date next to the Little Women blu-ray and Amazon package.

As a Prime member, you can pre-order items like books, movies, albums, games, and more. If you order electronic versions (like a Kindle ebook, for example), your book will be available to you instantly once it’s released.

Shipped items should arrive by 9 p.m. on the day of their release.

 

11. Save up to 40% on hardcover children’s books with Amazon Book Box.

A woman pulling two kids books out of an amazon prime kids book box.

Amazon Book Box delivers two hardcover books or four board books for delivery every one to three months. You can either take what the Amazon editors choose to send you, or ‘customize’ your box by picking specific titles from available options.

It’s $16.99 for your first box and then $19.99 for every box after that.

 

12. Get a free Twitch subscription with Prime Gaming.

A teen sitting at a desk with headphones on, looking at the Amazon Prime Gaming home page on a laptop.

Your Prime membership comes with Prime Gaming, which gives you access to a bunch of different PC games for free.

Notably, it also gives you a free Twitch subscription which would normally cost you $4.99/month – complete with free, in-game loot.

 

13. Choose No-Rush Shipping and get Amazon credits.

81954

If you’re not in a hurry (sometimes you’ll need to wait up to six days), you can earn Amazon credits for selecting No-Rush Shipping. These credits sit in your Amazon account, waiting to be applied to your next purchase.

Until September 15, 2022, the offer is $1 off select eBooks, digital music, videos, and apps. You’ll get the rewards after your order is shipped. In the past, I’ve also seen straight Amazon Balance credits offered.

Learn more about free Amazon credits.

 

14. Add money to Amazon Cash and get free bonus credit.

A person's hands holding up a cell phone displaying the Amazon Cash page on the Amazon mobile app.

Amazon runs regular promotions where you can get a $5 bonus for adding at least $20 to your Amazon balance. In the past, they’ve partnered with retailers like CVS and Rite Aid, or other companies. I’ve seen deals where if you add $20 to your Amazon Balance from an AllPoint+ ATM, you’ll get a $5 Amazon Cash bonus.

These offers rotate on and off, so if you don’t see one now, check back in a month or so.

 

15. Get Amazon credit with Amazon Trade-In.

An iPad, Amazon Fire stick, and Amazon Echo dot being boxed up to ship.

You can get immediate trade-in values for your used movies, books, tablets, readers, gaming equipment, and other gadgets with Amazon Trade-In.

Just print a free shipping label and send it off. Amazon will make you an offer, and an Amazon credit will show up in your account once they receive your item. Trade-in values vary and can start as low as a couple of dollars for an old book to $400 dollars for a barely used phone.

Use Amazon Trade-In when you’re ready to upgrade your Amazon device. For example, depending on its condition, you can trade in your device for an Amazon gift card and get 25% off a new Fire tablet, Echo device, or other Amazon tech.

 

16. Transform your Visa gift card balance into Amazon credit.

A person holding a visa gift card next to a cell phone open to an amazon gift card purchase page.

Do you have like $3.12 left on a Visa gift card that you keep forgetting to use up? Clean out your wallet by transforming it into Amazon credit. It’s easy — buy an Amazon eGift card in the exact amount, using your Visa gift card to pay for it, of course. Then apply the Amazon gift card to your Amazon Balance.

 

17. Create a Holiday Gift List (registry).

Amazon holiday gift list

An Amazon Holiday Gift List is like a registry for Christmas presents. The cool part is that you can add items for everyone in your household on one list. I can think of a lot of uses for this, but one comes to mind immediately: Out of town relatives who typically ask what you or your kids want for Christmas. This way, they don’t have to ask!

Here’s how it works:

  • Add your name, select the day you plan to open presents, where gifts should be shipped, and opt for your list to be public, shareable, or private.
  • Create a “gift tag” for everyone in your household. These serve as each person’s specific lists.
  • Shop Amazon, and when you find something you want to add to a list, tap the “Add to Registry & Gifting” dropdown on the right side, below the
  • “Add to cart” option. Select the correct gift list from the options. Rinse and repeat.

Amazon tracks who bought what from the list so thank-you notes are easy to whip up after the holidays.

Start a Holiday Gift List right now.

 

18. Quadruple your return window when you shop from Oct. 1–Dec. 31.

woman shops on amazon on a laptop surrounded by amazon boxes

Amazon’s return policy gives you 30 days to decide if you want to keep items. But as the holidays ramp up, anything you buy between Oct. 1 and Dec. 31 has an extended return policy and you don’t have to return it until Jan. 31.

 

19. Use the Amazon app to keep Target honest.

A person holding their phone displaying an air fryer product page on the Amazon app next to a Target shopping cart with an air fryer sitting in it.

It’s called sophisticated price matching.

Scan your Target item with the Amazon app while you’re still in the store, and if Amazon is offering it for a lower price, march over to customer service and ask for the Amazon price.

Target is just one example. This works at any store that offers an Amazon price match — like Best Buy, The Home Depot, JOANN, and more.

 

20. Check CamelCamelCamel to make sure you’re buying at Amazon’s lowest price.

Amazon price tracking with Camel Camel Camel on a computer screen

You can be absolutely sure you’re getting Amazon’s best price — no guesswork.

CamelCamelCamel.com tracks Amazon items and gives you examples of a “good” vs. “bad” price, based on pricing trends over the past year. Use it to see if an Amazon sale price is as low as you think it is compared to that item’s past pricing.

Or create price alerts for items you want, set your ideal price, and CamelCamelCamel.com will email you when Amazon drops the price.

 

21. Get 3 – 5% cash back when you buy Amazon devices through Ibotta.

a cellphone being held up with ibotta app in front of amazon boxes and packages

You can’t get cash back through Ibotta for every Amazon purchase, but you can for Amazon device purchases.

Here’s what you can expect to see when you open the Ibotta app:

  • 3% cash back on Ring doorbells and Amazon smart home devices; 5% cash back on Amazon devices like Fire Tablets, Echo smart speakers, and Kindles.
  • Free 30-day trials of Kindle Unlimited, Amazon Music Unlimited, Audible, and Amazon Kids+ Unlimited.

TIP: When you cash out through Ibotta, you can choose to receive your payment in the form of an Amazon gift card!

 

22. Paribus can help get you a credit if Amazon is late to deliver your package.

A person holding an iphone with the Paribus app next to an Amazon box.

Paribus from Capital One will help you get compensated when an Amazon delivery is later than its guarantee (Two-Day, One-Day or Same-Day shipping, whichever you requested.)

 

23. Ship donations in Amazon boxes to charities for free.

After unpacking your Amazon order, take the empty box and fill it with all those things you’ve been meaning to donate.

Choose an organization you want to donate your stuff to and print a free shipping label from GiveBackBox.com. Set your package outside and schedule a free USPS pickup. Voila!

 

24. Share your Prime membership with your BFF.

two women look at a laptop while laying on a bed

Technically, you can only share your Prime benefits if you have an Amazon Prime Family Account, but that’s only for people who live in the same home.

So, here’s where the “alternative sharing method” comes in. Your Prime address book and payment options are virtually unlimited. Meaning if your best friend or your grandma wants to use your Prime account for the free two-day shipping, just give them your login and they’ll add their own address and credit card info to your account.

Just make sure you don’t accidentally mix up payment info on your next order!

 

25. Earn $18 – $25 per hour making deliveries for Amazon Flex.

car driver for amazon flex with

Amazon Flex is a delivery service where you can make $18 – $25 per hour driving packages to doorsteps in your community. You’ll use your own car and only work when you want to.

Full-time work isn’t really a thing with Amazon Flex, so it’s more like supplemental income.

 

25 Amazon Prime Shopping Perks You Probably Don't Know