During today’s Amazon 2018 Q1 earnings call, the online shopping behemoth announced it would be raising prices of its annual Prime membership to $119 from the current $99 price point. Is the service still worth it?
I love my Prime membership and use it all the time. Ordering things with free same-day, one-day, or two-day delivery is so much more convenient for me than going to the store.
I’m not the only one enjoying my Prime membership, however. Amazon recently announced that it surpassed 100,000,000 Prime members. It’s worth noting that not all members pay the same, as Amazon Prime pricing varies by country. In India, Prime costs ₹999 per year, or right around $15 USD. At the time of writing, residents of Canada still pay $79 CAD/year for Prime.
Most places, you can expect to pay quite a bit for two-day shipping on most products. I recently ordered some items from an online retailer and paid $30 for regular UPS ground shipping on a single item.
Prime has tons of benefits, with free shipping on millions of items just being one. With a Prime membership, you also have access to unlimited photo storage, discounted music streaming, the ability to watch thousands of movies and TV shows, among many other things.
Prime at $99 per year was an amazing deal, but even at the 20% increase to $119 a year, it’s still a great value in my opinion. Where else can you get everything that Prime offers for around $10 per month? That’s the cost for an Apple Music or Spotify subscription.
If you really think about it, Amazon still has to pay to ship everything to your door. Though they’re starting to use their own delivery service, I can’t imagine what Amazon pays per year in shipping dues, even with corporate volume discounts. As more people join, Amazon has to be shipping more and more product, which means this price hike was inevitable.
This change will take effect on May 11th for new members, though Amazon is still offering a free 30-day membership to anyone who isn’t already a part of its Prime service. Existing members can expect to pay this 20% increase after June 16th. This comes after Amazon raised its monthly fees from $10.99 to $12.99 earlier this year.
Amazon Prime for Students is a great way to get college textbooks and more. Though Amazon still offers 6-months free for new members, this plan will also be seeing a price hike. Normally $49 per year, Amazon is said to raise that cost to $59.
Amazon reminds subscribers that it hasn’t raised the annual cost of Prime since March 2014. Prime gives all sorts of benefits, from free shipping (same-day in some cases) to unlimited movies and shows. Even with its price hike up to $119 per year, Prime pays for itself if you order just a few items per month.
To some, this $20 increase might just be too much. If you happen to be in that boat, it’s easy to cancel your Prime subscription before renewal to make sure you don’t incur extra charger. If you’d like to manage or cancel your Prime membership, head on over to Amazon’s account page for more details.
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