My mom always said don’t answer a question with a question. I listened to her about as well as my kids listen to me. So, is Amazon Prime really worth the cost? I’ve got some questions for you in order to answer that. Sorry, Mom.
And at the end, you can tell me if you think Amazon Prime is worth it or not.
1. How much does Amazon Prime cost?
It’s $119 per year unless you’re eligible for a discounted Prime membership. You can pay yearly or you can pay monthly, but you’ll pay more overall if you go for the monthly membership. It’s $12.99 per month, which adds up to $155.88 — that’s almost $37 more than you’d pay for an annual membership.
2. Can you get free shipping without Prime?
Yes. If you meet the minimum spend amount of $25 per Amazon order, you’ll get free shipping even if you’re not a Prime member.
But consider this: If you make more than 24 small Amazon purchases per year, you’re paying for the cost of a Prime membership anyway, and you might as well get all the other benefits, which I’ll get into soon.
Why? Because non-Prime members pay about $5 in shipping fees for each order less than $25. A Prime membership costs $119 per year. So, following this logic, it’d take about 24 shipments (orders that cost less than $25) to cover your Prime membership.
3. Do you like packages sitting on your porch all day?
If not, as a Prime member, you’ll get to use Amazon Lockers for free. Sure, non-Prime members can use them too. But they pay shipping fees like a regular Amazon delivery.
Another way Amazon tries to solve the packages-on-the-porch-all-day problem is by offering Prime members up to two Amazon Days per week. This is a day of your choice to receive Amazon orders (like a Saturday if you work out of the home all week). Amazon will combine items into single packages as often as possible to give a shout out to the planet too.
4. Would you use free Amazon grocery delivery?
It’ll be Whole Foods delivery, Amazon Fresh or Prime Now, depending on what’s offered in your area. Deliveries usually cost about $5 for non-Prime members, but they’re free for members. It’d take 24 deliveries to justify the cost of your Prime membership — two deliveries per month.
5. Are you a fan of getting 20% off diapers?
Diapers are a budget buster for most families, so finding where to buy cheap diapers is one of the first parenting survival skills we learn.
Amazon Family is a dependable way to save on diapers. It’s a program just for Prime members to save up to 20% on diapers, wipes, formula — basically all things baby. You’ll set up recurring orders (twice a month, monthly, whatever you’d like) to get these savings.
6. Do you want to police how many episodes of Bubble Guppies your kids watch?
At $1.99 per episode, it’d take 60 TV episodes to pay for your Prime Membership. That’s three seasons of Bubble Guppies.
And yes, most of us would admit our kids watch more TV than we want them to (especially since the pandemic). But instead of feeling guilty, know you’re not alone. Sign up for Prime and start setting the extra money you save aside for their college (or therapy. But probably college).
The grown-up version: If we assume a movie rental on Amazon is $2.99-$5.99, it’d take 20-40 rentals every year to pay for your annual Prime Membership — two or less rentals a month.
7. Are you willing to get your packages a few days later if it means free money?
Stay with me here. Yes, when you’re a Prime member you get free shipping.
But also, you can choose “no-rush shipping” and get your package in five days instead of one or two, plus earn $1-$5 toward eligible ebooks, movie rentals, and other digital purchases.
To earn even more, create separate orders for each of your items, and you’ll get separate credits every time you choose “no-rush shipping.”
8. Do you like on-demand music without commercials?
Every Prime member gets on-demand access to Amazon Music Prime, which boasts over two million songs, ad free.
9. Do you want free access to e-books, even before they’re released?
Every month, Prime members can download one free ebook to a Kindle, iPhone, or Android device for free. Otherwise, you get anytime access to thousands of well-known titles like Harry Potter or 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.
10. Do you ever use audiobooks on road trips, commutes, or days when you’re the family taxi?
As a Prime member, you can access Amazon Audible and choose from a list of 50 audiobooks for free; titles change frequently.
Audible is pretty spendy by itself. You get just one audiobook per month, and it costs $14.95. If you did this, you would pay for the cost of your Amazon membership in just seven months.
11. Do you like getting cash back on every Amazon purchase you make?
…Even at Whole Foods!
Prime members get access to the Amazon Prime Visa Signature credit card, which offers 5% cash back on all Amazon purchases and 1% back on other purchases. Only Prime members are eligible for this higher percentage of savings.
If you spent $2,400 on Amazon (or Whole Foods) in one year, you’d get your membership fee ($119) back in the form of cash-back savings if that’s your goal. Otherwise, just enjoy getting cash back whenever you do make a purchase.