When I was preparing to write this post, I asked Johnny, “When did we become Amazon Prime members?” His response: “I don’t know. . . [thinking] . . . I really don’t.” And I don’t either. It’s changed our lives so much that we can’t remember a time without it. Or maybe our brains have tried to block out those horrible pre-Prime memories. But, luckily, our Prime account knew how long… and it’s been over three years. Life as we knew it changed when we became Amazon Prime members. Okay, that sounds dramatic. But it’s true.
The time and convenience (and money) we’ve saved from Amazon Prime over the years is almost ridiculous. It’s especially saved our sanity when we’ve lived in big cities and during the throes of new parenthood when ordering online is 1000x more doable than going out in public. Even still, because Johnny and I are who we are, we’ve asked ourselves on a few occasions if it’s still worth it to have an Amazon Prime membership. At $99 per year (and $49 per year for students), it’s a significant expense to consider. But after thinking about it for about 2 seconds, our answer is always a resounding YES.
So today I wanted to share why we love Amazon Prime so much and why it’s found a permanent spot in our budget.
Our Favorite Features
Free Two-Day Shipping
From cat food to diapers to deodorant to last-minute gifts for loved ones, it all arrives on our doorstep just two days after we order it. And, oddly enough, since living in NYC, oftentimes items arrive within one day. It’s kind of freaky.
Prime Instant Video
Amazon offers free streaming on thousands of popular movies and TV shows. At first the selection was mediocre, but now its library rivals Netflix. I even have TV shows I watch on Prime that Netflix doesn’t offer. The only downside is that it’s not quite as user-friendly as Netflix. As soon as they improve the user experience, we might have to say goodbye to Netflix for good.
Another one of our favorite features? Free, unlimited photo storage on Amazon Cloud Drive. We take a ton of photos on our phone and with our DSLR. And over time, those photos take up a significant amount of space on our computers, to the point that our computers start running out of space themselves. Welp, not anymore! Now we store all of our photos in one place on Amazon. It’s pretty darn great.
This perk only applies if you live in Manhattan. But it’s nuts. With Amazon Now, we have access to thousands of items with a 2-hour delivery. In other words, we order it, and it arrives on our doorstep in less than 2 hours. And it’s all at Amazon Prime prices. We mostly use this feature for emergencies, like when one of us is sick, since part of the delivery is tipping.
As a Prime member, I’m part of Amazon Mom, which, as a professional diaper-changer, has been a game changer. I get 20% off all our diapers by using the Subscribe and Save feature. I also have access to all their other coupons and deals on baby supplies. (You can try Amazon Mom for free here.)
For smaller items, Amazon has an add-on feature. In order to get these items, you have to spend $25 in other items sold by Amazon. The thing about these add-on items is that their prices are always fantastic. So if I’m placing a large order on cat food, I make sure to add a few add-on items we’ve been needing as well.
One of my favorite aspects of Amazon, which isn’t exclusive to Prime members, is having access to all their user reviews. Even if I’m buying an item at a brick-and-mortar store, I almost always look it up on Amazon to see what reviewers thought of it. And I don’t make a single Amazon purchase without scouring the reviews first. It really helps eliminate the need to ever return an item since I know in advance exactly what to expect.
As a customer, I’m quick to complain if something isn’t right with an order. And let me tell you, Amazon’s got my back every single time. They’re apologetic and quick to fix the problem. It’s so refreshing to know that if a problem comes up, I can always depend on them to take care of it immediately.
Other Cool Features
I haven’t used this feature (yet), but Prime Music offers access to over a million songs for free. And you can create your own playlists and listen on the go. Better yet, it’s all ad-free. I’m planning to give this feature a try when I start back running after the baby’s born.
Kindle Owners’ Lending Library
If you own a Kindle device, this is a pretty awesome feature. You can choose from a library of over 800,000 books and borrow one each month for free.
Each month, Amazon editors choose a few books that will be released the following month, and Prime members can choose one to download for free… a month before they’re released to the public! I just learned about this feature, actually, and I’m planning to give it a try ASAP.
How’s that for a boatload of perks for only $99 per year? Netflix alone costs more than that, and Amazon Prime offers that same service as just one of its many features. I really don’t know how they’re making any money. Suffice it to say, we plan to be Prime members for many moons to come. Any fellow Prime members out there? Any perks I missed? And if you want to try out a free 30-day trial, you can do that here. I can’t wait for the day when they start delivering our stuff with their creepy little drones.