When I first signed up for Amazon Prime several years ago, I was just trying to save money on shipping.
Then when I learned how to use Swagbucks to earn gift cards, I would redeem my points for gift cards to Amazon. Those gift cards paid for a variety of items, from food to gifts to even clothes. One of the ways we were able to pay off our debt so quickly, was because we were getting many of our household items for free, with free shipping, from Amazon.
The benefits of Amazon Prime have grown significantly in the past few years, and aside from free 2-day shipping, there are some seriously awesome benefits that you might be missing out on!
First, let’s start with the obvious.
16 Amazon Prime Benefits You Might Not Know About
1. You Can Try Amazon Prime for Free for 30 Days
First, if you don’t have a membership to Amazon Prime, you can sign up here for a 30-Day free trial. Ordinarily, a membership costs $99/year, but you can have two-day shipping, Prime Music, and the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library all for free!
(And you don’t have to have a Kindle either!)
Once the free trial is over (sign up here), you can make the yearly membership worth it by buying 10 things that would ordinarily require shipping… over the course of a year.
When you think of all the little things you need throughout the year… a pair of shorts, a Father’s day gift, a book, Christmas gifts… it’s easy to rack up those 10 items.
For example, we bought my husband new shirts for work recently. Kohl’s wanted $55 per shirt, but Amazon had them for just $12 each! Our savings in this purchase alone paid for nearly half of the membership!
This is just one example of where Amazon’s prices tend to be the same, if not better, than what we find in-store.
I find this especially to be true for DIY projects like homemade sunscreen, homemade citronella candles, and homemade toothpaste. It’s hard to find everything I need for these projects locally, without making tons of phone calls or driving all over the place. And to find the supplies at a decent price is even harder.
That’s one reason we love Amazon Prime! Sign up for a FREE 30-day trial HERE.
2. Faster than Free Two-day Shipping
I already mentioned the free two-day shipping that comes with Amazon Prime, and we use Prime as a filter when we search so we don’t pay for shipping on almost everything we buy online.
But now Amazon has thousands of items available for one-day shipping and even same-day delivery for many zip codes. You can see if same-day or one-day shipping is available in your zip code on this page.
And now if you live in a major city, you might even get your order delivered within TWO HOURS!
Prime Now is exclusive to Amazon Prime members, and over 25,000 items are available to be delivered to your door before nap time is over. How’s that for convenience?
3. Amazon Prime Pantry
Prime Pantry is the equivalent of an online grocery store. You can buy everyday package sizes instead of bulk packaging, like a single box of cereal, instead of the massive cases.
Shipping one box of cereal isn’t worth it for Amazon or for you, but with Prime Pantry, you can fill up a whole box of single items and THEN it’s worth it.
There’s a flat fee of $5.99 per box, BUT you can get the entire box shipped for free when you select 5 qualifying items per box. Qualifying items range from coffee to glass cleaner to cereal to granola… there are over 1000 items that qualify for free shipping.
To maximize this perk, make sure you choose just 5 qualifying items per box. Save any other qualifying items for a second box so that box ships for free too!
Prime Pantry will also remember what you order, so you can re-order without having to drudge up old receipts or orders.
And the best yet, Prime Pantry has close-out deals! As of this posting, there are…
- organic corn tortilla chips for $1.80 AND a 15% off coupon, making it just $1.53 for the bag
- organic blue corn tortilla chips for $1.47 AND a 15% off coupon, making the whole bag just $1.25
- powdered peanut butter for $4 (I use this in my daily green maca smoothie and this is a great price!)
These are just a few deals of course, and Prime Pantry is more than just food. There are kitchen appliances, personal care products, and home cleaning supplies too.
Finding the rock bottom prices like these on groceries is one of the principles I teach in Grocery Budget Bootcamp. Always shop around to find the best deals!
Tip: Prime Pantry also has coupons! As always, only clip the coupon for the items you were already going to buy. But if you were already going to buy toilet paper, why not save $1? Check out more about Prime Pantry HERE.
4. Amazon Fresh (formerly known as Prime Fresh)
If you thought Prime Pantry was cool, Amazon kicks it up a notch with Prime Fresh. With Prime Fresh, you can have fresh produce and groceries delivered to your door!
This perk is not available in all areas (you can see if it’s available in your zip code here), but you can see what types of items are available on this page.
As of this posting, they’re running a sale for 25% off grilling essentials, 30% off the organic chicken, and 20% off Organic Valley cheese. If they deliver to your area, Prime Fresh could have competitive prices for your grocery store!
What makes Prime Fresh worth it though in my opinion, is that there are no other fees involved. There are other food delivery sites (Peapod, Boxed, Jet.com), but if you’re already paying for your yearly Amazon Prime membership (or using the free 30-day trial), then why pay the extra fees by shopping elsewhere?
Update: It looks like Amazon has recently changed Prime Fresh to Amazon Fresh and with it, changed the terms to a free 30-day trial before a monthly charge. I still think it’s worth trying for the free 30 days if you enjoy the convenience of food delivery. After the trial period, it’s worth breaking down the cost of food on Amazon + the monthly charge, and then comparing this to other grocery delivery sites. I teach you how to do this in my Grocery Budget Bootcamp course. Enrollment opens three times a year, so sign up HERE to be notified when you can join us!
5. FREE Release-Date Delivery
I haven’t taken advantage of the FREE release-date delivery perk with my Amazon Prime membership much, simply because I like to wait until others have read and reviewed a book first. I want others to be the guinea pigs!
But I took the plunge with two books this past month.
The first was is The Simple Bites Kitchen: Nourishing Whole Food Recipes for Every Day. I’ve been a long-time reader of the author’s blog, and although I don’t read many cookbooks, I can’t wait to dive in.
The second book I bought was More Than Just Making It: Hope for the Heart of the Financially Frustrated. The author is a friend who I’ve watched pour her heart and soul into her book. Our families hang out together and we even were roommates at a conference last year. I was fortunate to get an advanced copy, but it’s such a good book, that I ordered a couple of copies for friends!
In both of these cases, the books aren’t available as of this posting, but when they are, they’ll be delivered to my door THE SAME DAY it’s released thanks to the free release-date delivery perk from Amazon Prime!
6. Kindle First
Speaking of books, every month Amazon Prime members can read a book that hasn’t even been released yet through Kindle First!
Each month, Amazon editors pick out new books that are due to come out the next month. As of this posting, they have a book to choose from in six categories: psychological thriller, romance, fantasy, historical fiction, contemporary fiction, and literary fiction.
Of the six books chosen, you can choose to read one of them… before it even comes out! One perk to this is that as the month progresses, people are leaving reviews. If you’re picky about books like me, just wait until you’re a week into the month and then choose one based on the reviews!
→ Here’s more about how Kindle First works.
7. Prime Reading
Yes, more books! Prime Reading is free unlimited access to over a thousand books, magazines, and comics. There’s a huge selection of fiction, non-fiction, children’s books, and newsstand magazines, available at your fingertips. It’s like checking things out from the library, except you can access it directly on your Kindle or mobile device.
In fact, you can browse 1000+ titles HERE to get a feel for what type of reading material is available.
- Want to read the latest Food Network Magazine? Done.
- Tried to check out Harry Potter: The Sorcerer’s Stone from the library but it’s always out. Get it through Prime Reading on Amazon for free.
- Want a book that has the audio version included? You got that too.
And with the Kindle App, you can read it from your desktop or laptop. Now you don’t need to have a Kindle to enjoy the benefits of one!
8. Amazon Family
If you have babies or are expecting a baby, Amazon Family is right up your alley. This program offers exclusive family-oriented offers, coupons, age-based recommendations, 20% off diaper subscriptions, and a 15% baby registry completion discount. In addition to the free 2-day shipping, there are also free returns (which isn’t always the case with certain sellers).
When both of my kids were in diapers, I played the drugstore game so I could spend as little as possible on diapers.
When I grew tired of the constant shopping and dragging both kids to the store every week, I bought them in bulk at Costco.
Now though, you can get better than Costco pricing with Amazon Family. As of this posting, a box of size 4 diapers at Costco costs 25¢ per diaper. The same box of diapers through Amazon Family is just 18¢ per diaper. That 7¢ adds up when you have multiple kids and multiple diaper changes on a daily basis!!
Remember that you can test out Amazon Prime and the Amazon Family perk for free for 30 days through this link. When you do, visit this page and fill out your child’s profile so you get the best deals for your family.
9. Amazon Restaurants
Although we don’t go out to eat often, I thoroughly enjoy taking the night off of shopping, prepping, cooking, and cleaning. With Amazon Restaurants, you can have your favorite dinner at your favorite restaurant delivered to your door in an hour!
Now, this super cool feature is not available in all areas – enter your zip code on this page to see if Amazon Restaurants is available near you.
If it is, you can enjoy $10 off your first order, enjoy your favorite foods WITHOUT any markup and have dinner on the table in an hour or less!
Personally, we’d take advantage of this on date nights when a sitter cancels at the last minute, or to celebrate a special occasion when we can’t leave the house – like when someone is sick for a birthday or anniversary.
10. Prime Video
Prime Video is a video streaming service, similar to Netflix (except you don’t have to pay an additional monthly fee).
There are THOUSANDS of movie titles available through Prime Video, including movies and TV shows that are exclusive to Amazon (meaning you won’t find them anywhere else). Browse the current selection of movies, TV shows, and original series HERE.
A benefit to having Prime Video (which is included with an Amazon Prime membership), is the ability to purchase video subscriptions to the channel. Some of the available channels are Showtime, Starz, HBO, PBS Masterpiece, and True Crime Files, just to name a few.
Subscribing to additional channels comes with a monthly fee, but you can start with a free trial first to see if it’s something that will work for you.
Channels through Prime Video would be especially beneficial for families who have cable just for the one or two channels they like to watch on a regular basis. Plus, HBO, Showtime, and Starz channels even have live streaming, so you can watch shows and movies at the same time as the TV broadcast.
11. Prime Photos
Amazon Prime members get unlimited photo storage, from anywhere and on any device, with Prime Photos. Amazon uses image recognition to help you organize your photos, meaning you can search for photos by looking for things, people, or places without having to tag any photo. There are more capabilities too, like searching, refining, and grouping (for all those people who like their stuff nice and neat.)
Personally, I am AWFUL about keeping my photos organized. I basically dump it all on my desktop and then spend hours searching for the one photo (out of thousands) that I’m looking for. Amazon Photos is a MUCH better system!
Another cool bonus to this perk too, is that you can share your photos with other family members by adding them to the Family Vault. For example, I can share pictures of my kids here in Georgia with my grandma in Chicago and my in-laws in Delaware – and visa versa – by adding us all to the family vault.
→ Learn more about Prime Photos.
12. Prime Music
Prime Music is a selection of 2 million songs (and growing) that is ad-free and available whenever you want to listen. You can choose from artists, albums, individual songs, or playlists based on any of these options as well.
For example, if you’re like my 9-year-old son and love to listen to Toby Mac while playing pool in the basement, you can choose the “Toby Mac Station.” You’ll get Toby Mac, but you’ll also get songs from other artists in the same genre (which is great for parents of the said 9-year-old son who can only take so much Toby Mac at one time).
One of the cool benefits of Prime Music is that you can pause, skip forward and skip back. Do you know how on other streaming radios you can’t repeat a song you just played? Not the case with Prime Music.
Your listening preferences are also synched across your devices. I use Prime Music most often while running, but it’s easier for me to set up playlists on my desktop. A few minutes on the computer with a few taps on my phone and I’m good to go!
We also download albums from Prime Music and have them on our devices for road trips. We have our favorite local radio stations, but when you’re in the middle of nowhere and you’re beyond tired of every CD you’ve put in the car, this benefit is awesome!
13. Twitch Prime
If you’re a gamer, Twitch Prime is for you. It’s a social video platform and community for gamers, video game culture, and the creative arts. It features a rotating selection of free digital games and in-game loot, ad-free viewing, and a free Twitch channel every 30 days. It’s entirely free with Amazon Prime membership – you just have to connect your account. You can do that on this page.
Once you do, you can enjoy exclusive benefits like a 20% discount on new-release box games, both existing and pre-orders. Like books, you can also get release-day delivery with video games through Twitch Prime.
You can also take advantage of exclusive savings on gear and games too. Amazon also highlights TV shows and movies popular among the gaming community AND free via Prime Video, making it super easy to watch your favorite shows.
14. Audible Channels
Audible Channels is similar to Prime Video channels, except it’s all audio, no video. There are audiobooks for movies like Jaws and The Butterfly Effect, family-friendly audiobooks that are road-trip-approved like Winnie the Pooh, and classic stories read by now-famous actors like Elijah Wood and Scarlett Johansson.
Amazon has also added original audio series to Audible Channels. It’s kind of like podcasts, except they’re stores or series. What a great way to pass the time while doing chores or exercising!
15. Prime Early Access
Every day Amazon has new lightning deals. With Amazon Prime, you have Prime Early Access and get the deals 30 minutes earlier than everyone else. This benefit comes in REALLY handy during Black Friday Sales when hot items are gone in just minutes!
16. Prime Household
I’ve saved the best for last because get this – you can share your Amazon Prime account!
When you share your Amazon Prime account via Prime Household, you can share some of the most popular benefits with other adults. These benefits are included in Amazon Household:
- Free two-day Prime shipping
- Prime Now
- Prime Video
- Audible Channels
- Prime Photos
- Kindle Owners’ Lending Library
- Prime Early Access
- 20% off diaper subscriptions and 15% off Baby Registry completion via Amazon Family
- Family Vault
- Twitch Prime
Here are the benefits that are NOT shareable:
- Prime Music
- Prime Reading
- Kindle First
- Discount on video games
Learn more about creating and managing a Prime Household HERE.
One Last Thought
If you already have an Amazon Prime membership, log in and start taking advantage of these benefits ASAP.
If you DON’T have an Amazon Prime membership, sign up for the free 30-day trial HERE and start using these benefits to make the most of your trial period. We originally became members for the free 2-day shipping, but years later we love having music, videos and so much more included!
Tracey W Fleger
I don’t see any Prime Restaurant info at your link. Perhaps this is no longer available? I’ve never heard of it.
Have you noticed that not all Prime products have fast shipping options like they used to? This seems to be a change that occurred recently. I love being a prime member, but now I am starting to see the service slip a bit.
I have! 🙁 I’ve started to pay more attention to the actual delivery day quoted during checkout. It doesn’t always solve it, but to be honest, we use Prime so often that if something takes an extra day now and then, it’s par for the course.
Thank you for pulling this list together.
Things have changed as amazon tweaks their products based on market needs, and lets just say 2020 is a different world.
1. One huge change is SNAP. If you have food stamp benefits, you qualify for Prime for cheaps! Like $6/month, billed monthly. All the same Prime benefits, except not shareable.
2. One big thing for us is that Pantry items are SNAP-able!
3. Another great help is Key. If you have a smart garage door opener, they’ll deliver your products in your garage.
4. I love the delayed shipping option with a reward, such as $1.50 off future Kindle or Music purchases. If they dont offer me the reward, send it fast, ya little you-know-whats 😉
Please note that what comes with Prime and whats extra changes. Often. For example, Audible benefits are now only available if you have a monthly audible plan. For example, prime music and photos came with Prime, but now are their own thing, as far as I know. Hence why some names are changing. Like Pantry is now Amazon Pantry because anyone can use it.
We just got Prime. (I knew about everything but Swagbucks). But 🙁 now we are in a debate because I was reading an article on carbon footprint and how we are all wrecking the environment through excessive shipping and contributing to excess traffic and HUGE amounts of shipping materials. So I try to group into larger shipments, avoid two day etc unless necessary. They are also trying to get a green initiative on Amazon for recycled materials and group shipping etc. The world is changing and we are spoiled. But I’m torn because I like having my hard to find ingredients etc.
I know this is an older blog post but I still want to comment. I’ve been a faithful Amazon Prime member for several years and it is always my go-to for the lowest price on just about anything. However, we bought a cabinet for our bathroom on Amazon. It wasn’t Prime but was free shipping. I went back and read some questions and answers and found out the same item was at Bed Bath & Beyond for $20 less and they also had free shipping. I learned that the item was at my local store AND I was able to use the regular 20% off coupon and saved another $20. So, this taught me the valuable lesson that I still need to shop around before ordering off of Amazon.
Great lesson to learn Debbie – thank you for sharing with us!
Thanks, that helps! I don’t think it makes sense for me right now. Maybe if I run out of everything at once, which sometimes happens!
Thanks again! I love your blog!
I have a question. I’ve been a Prime member for years. How is Prime Pantry a benefit if you have to either pay shipping, or buy more stuff to fill your box? I used to order grocery items and not have to fill a box and still got free 2-day shipping. I hope this is not a stupid question, but I can’t seem to wrap my brain around this one.
No such thing as a stupid question Amanda! You don’t have to buy “more” stuff to fill the box, but if you choose 5 things from over 1000 items, the box ships for free. The benefit is that you’re able to purchase single items rather than multiples (i.e. one regular size box of cereal versus the 2-pack of large family size). Most of the food items included with Prime outside of Prime Pantry are large, or multiples.
Another benefit is that it’s an online grocery shopping option, and you don’t have to pay for shipping (like shopping through Jet.com or Boxed) OR an additional monthly/yearly fee (like if you shopped through Thrive Market). The prices are also consistent, where other online options will raise the price to compensate for the convenience of shopping online. You also don’t have to shop at certain time frames, like every month or every other month.
My suggestion would be to start with the list of items that count towards free shipping. If you can get 5, then go ahead and finish shopping. Even consider stocking up on pantry basics that you’ll use in the next 6 months anyway (i.e. ketchup, mustard, beans, rice, etc.). If you can’t get to 5, then pick up what you need locally. The key is to use this to your benefit, since you already have Prime. If Prime Pantry doesn’t save you time or money, then simply don’t use it. 🙂
Julie- Logger's Wife
I love Amazon Family. I can get diapers so much cheaper that way. Also like Prime Photo. I have a fear of losing pics so I backup to iCloud and Amazon. Wish we had Prime Now but far, far too far away from everything to have that option. Will have to check out Prime Pantry. Haven’t really taken the time to investigate it yet.
I was amazed at how much you could save on diaper through Amazon Family, Julie. And if you’re far from the city, delivery to your doorstep is priceless!
I sell used books on amazon and fully appreciate you shopping Prime 🙂 I do want to point out that sometimes you can find things cheaper, even including shipping, if you look at the merchant fulfilled items. I also sometimes sell new items with roughed up boxes in the used or collectible categories, so don’t be afraid to look their! I sold some kind of vacuum air filter that way once. Brand new buy boxes weren’t pristine so someone got a deal!
I totally agree! I usually start w/Prime b/c I’ve already paid for shipping, BUT when it says “other deals from other sellers as low as $$”, and that price is lower than what I’m paying w/Prime, then I DEFINITELY check those out! I just bought a “like new” set of hand weights this way!
Also remember that amazon enjoys controlling what you see. They sometimes will spotlight which items are closest to you. If you click around in conditions and fulfilled by options, you will find more choices. Amazon is also allowing MF sellers to list their shipping and price as one number. So, if you don’t need something fast, just look at the total that’s lowest and meets your needs.
Yes! My husband and I use Prime often. They usually are right in line with the local brick and mortar store, but sometimes are cheaper. Often it pays for convenience, especially if the have same day or two day shipping. We’ve recently fallen in love with the Amazon Prime music app, and have even upgraded to the Unlimited version. While we’re now paying $80/yr for music, we have access to almost every.single.album ever created in the history of music. Love Prime. The only downfall is the effect it has on smaller mom and pop type shops!
I think Prime Fresh is only free for the first 30 days-I could be wrong-but I’ve always seen a $14.99/month membership add on after that.
You are right Julie! I’ll update the post now. Thanks for pointing this out!