… that, as they say, is the question. Specifically, the question was this, from Daisy:
Is Amazon Prime worthwhile? I get a lot of amazon gift codes, and I wondered if combining those with Prime might be a good idea.
I love this question, but I also hate this question, because it’s a little bit like asking “Do these pants make me look fat?” and here is why: I think the answer to this question is highly subjective.
Let’s try to look at it from a purely mathematical angle.
Me, I do a lot of shopping at Amazon. A lot. Rather than belonging to a warehouse club, I buy a ton of bulk groceries and household products there, as well as books, music, and various other items. Honestly, it’s a rare week when I’m not getting a box (or three, ahem) from Amazon. But I don’t have Prime. I’ll go so far as to say that I can’t ever see myself paying $79/year for it.
Why? Well, many of my purchases are made via Subscribe & Save, which gives me free shipping with no minimum, anyway. Of the non-S&S items I buy, I don’t find it difficult to reach the $25+ Super Saver Shipping threshold; there’s always another book or kitchen gadget on my wishlist that I can toss into an order for free shipping.
For the past two holiday seasons I’ve managed to get a 3-month free Prime trial, and then I enjoy it very much—I’m able to scoop up the holiday toy deals without giving any thought to order minimums, I can ship direct to relatives, and I never have to worry about shipping charges or things arriving in time. For that it’s awesome, but again, that’s the only time of year I feel like it has a huge benefit for me.
On the other hand, I know plenty of people who have and use Prime and love it. If you live remotely and/or if you tend to procrastinate and need a gift or essential item right now, $79/year is probably a bargain compared to the time and money involved in constantly running out to buy things locally, or paying for rush shipping. I can see where it would be a real cost-savings for someone in that situation, sure.
Furthermore, the “free Super Saver Shipping on $25” thing can (and often does) lead people to spend more money. If you’re on the fence, look at it this way: Go through your Amazon order history for the last year. Do you have more than $79 worth of “things I added to that order to get free shipping” in addition to whatever you meant to buy? If the answer is yes, and having Prime will stop you from picking up those extra items, then it’s simple math that Prime saves you money.
Clear as mud, right? Always happy to help!