Amazon Prime- actually worth it?

30 July 2015

optimus_prime_transformed_topAmazon are the company many people love to hate- with some still boycotting the online retail giant over corporate tax avoidance. But with small, but significant changes to delivery policies, and now the news that Amazon Instant Video has snagged Jeremy Clarkson and his buddies for a new Top Gear-esque show, is Amazon Prime actually turning out to be a non-brainer?

Well. First things first, Amazon Prime costs £79 a year (or £39 if you are a student), which is the equivalent of just over £6.50 per month. But included with your Prime membership is unlimited one-day delivery, Kindle lending library, and access to Amazon Instant Video, and free cloud storage as well as the newly launched (to little fanfare) Amazon Music streaming service which allows Prime subscribers to listen to hundreds of albums free of charge, ad-free. So what are the savings?

Well, Amazon's delivery always used to be a major perk, as anything would be delivered under its 'Super Saver' delivery within 5 days. However, they changed their policy to mean that now, only orders including £10 or more of books qualify for  Super Saver Delivery., with orders of non-books needing to be over £20 in order to qualify. If you were to pay for delivery, you'd pay £5.99 for one-day delivery, £2.75 for first-class post (which takes up to two business days), £8.99 for express delivery (you will receive the item by midday the following day) or £14.99 for delivery on the evening you purchase the item. So guaranteed one-day delivery seems to be quite cheap really, especially if you've left things to the last minute, or you're having a late December Christmas present meltdown. Some suggest that, if you buy things from Amazon 13 times in a year, you will have 'recovered' the cost of your Prime membership.

However, what is also a Thing with Amazon Prime is the cashback you get if you don't need your item the next day. If you have normal delivery instead of next-day, Amazon will give you a digital content credit of between £1 and £3 per delivery (so if you have a few things to buy that you aren't desperate for, you can do quite well here) that can be spent on things like Kindle books and MP3 music. Even more savings in the jar.

And talking of Kindle books, if you have a Kindle (unfortunately just having the Kindle app on a tablet or laptop doesn't count) you can 'borrow' one book per month from the Kindle lending library. Of course, Amazon also has “Kindle Unlimited” at £7.99 a month where you can borrow as many novels as you wish, but if you are happy borrowing only one book a month, this perk could save you up to £84 a year, by not subscribing to a rival e-reader subscription service.

But Amazon Instant Video is the big one, Clarkson notwithstanding, as, if you're into that sort of thing, this will immediately save you £72 a year (against your £79 Prime cost) as this alone costs £5.99 per month. It also compares favourably with other streaming services like NowTV (which recently received a massive boost thanks to Game of Thrones) at £6.99 per month or Netflix, which starts at £5.99 per month, but whose 'standard' subscription which includes viewing on two screens (like Amazon Instant Video) is actually £7.49 per month.

So what do you think? Are you a happy Amazon Primer or are you still brandishing your figurative bargepole? You can't get Better Call Saul on Amazon either...

10 comments

  • jt
    I'm happy with Amazon Prime because: A) My wife pays for it but I still get the free deliveries B) If you complain about a delivery they normally just give you a month's Prime for free (so far we have had 6 free months) C) We have an Amazon Firestick (saved money on that too as Prime members), so get lots of TV stuff for free.
  • Mick T.
    I have Amazon Prime, I wanted to buy some new stationary for one of the kids who starts high school in September, it didn't take me long to get to over £20, bizarrely it wouldn't let me have items classed as an Add-On item as the amount of the items being shipped directly from Amazon was under £20 even though the total order was £24. It was applying all sorts of additional delivery charges as well, in the end after deciding I didn't want to spend the additional money on delivery charges after already forking out on Prime I decided I'd actually go to a real stationary shop instead. So well done Amazon, you're helping to save the high street! Though I don't think I'll be renewing Prime.
  • Peter T.
    I'm a happy Primer. I wish there were more on Prime Video and Music but the free next-day delivery, even on Sundays, is great. Mind you, I'm reconsidering my membership since the Clarkson announcement.
  • gin m.
    Lately IVE BEEN CONCERNED ABOUT AMAZON PRIME. LESS ITEMS ARE ACTUALLY AVAILABLE ON AMAZON QUALITY SENT IS NOT AS SHOWN. MARKETPLACE IS FULL OF SCAMMERS IM WATCHING THIS YEAR. KEEPING TRAC OF WHAT I ACTUALLY BUY FROM AMAZON ITSELF. AMAZON INSTANT IS A PAIN IN THE A.. TO FIND MOVIES, ETC TEDIOUS. I HOPE THEY IMPROVE THE WAY ONE SEARCHES. VERY VERY UNHAPPY ABOUT CLARKSON AND CO. RUDE. DISMISSIVE. DRUNK. OFFENSIVE. AND GRUNT GRUNT BORING. WE WILL SEE. PROBABLY MORE SWARMY. TOO MUCH MONEY ON A NICHE SHOW. GRUNT. GRUNT. HOW ABOUT LEARNING SHOWS RELATING TO ANYTHING. 20 MINUTE SHORTS ON ANY SUBJECT. EDUCATION EDUCATION EDUCATION INTERACTIVE WOULD BE GOOD JEFF PLEASE DONT FOLLOW THE CROWD KEEP YOUR UNIQUENESS. G
  • Mr C.
    Personally, the content isn't good enough to be really considered much of a benefit. I got it a couple of years ago because the one day delivery made it worthwhile but I have only watched 2 films on the Instant Video. At the current price I find it just about worthwhile for the delivery, but if they did a cheaper version with no online content I would go for it without question.
  • Lauren M.
    Instant video = shit compared to netflix Amazon music = shit compared to spotify Not worth the extra dosh over what they used to charge when it was just deliveries. As a consequence I get more of my cheap tat from ebay and the shops than I used to.
  • LD
    And FOUR friends/family get Prime delivery on your subscription too.
  • The F.
    Haven't shopped at Amazon for donkeys.
  • chewie
    @The first What about horses or other four-legged mammals?
  • Kevin
    'as the amount of the items being shipped directly from Amazon was under £20 even though the total order was £24' The clue there is that the amount from Amazon was under £20. 'It was applying all sorts of additional delivery charges as well' Because some of the things you bought were from Marketplace sellers who charge for delivery.

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