- Amazon Prime is a convenient service that offers free two-day shipping.
- Due to rising costs, supply chain issues, and competitors upping their game, you may not get your money's worth.
You may want to save your money and use it elsewhere.
Some people consider Amazon Prime a lifeline of sorts and wonder how they ever managed without it. I should know -- I'm one of them.
The truth is that I rely on Amazon for everything from household items to hard-to-find snack foods to last-minute birthday gifts for the parties my kids are invited to. And I find Amazon's price points fairly competitive in many (though not all) purchase categories.
But while I can't imagine not having Amazon Prime in my life, it's not right for everyone. In fact, here are a few reasons why you may not want to pay for a Prime membership.
1. It's getting more expensive
The cost of Amazon Prime is rising from $119 a year to $139 a year. If you're already struggling to make ends meet and are relying on credit cards to cover your monthly expenses, then that's a fee you may want to avoid. Chances are, if you research purchases carefully and plan out your shopping trips strategically, you can find the items you need at competitive prices so you're not forced to rely on Amazon.
2. You may not get two-day shipping
One of Amazon Prime's most well-known features is free two-day shipping. And to be clear, there's no minimum spending threshold for free shipping once you're a Prime member. But if you think paying that $139 fee will guarantee that every purchase you make will arrive at your door within 48 hours, think again. Thanks to shipping bottlenecks and supply chain issues, Amazon's deliveries can be subject to notorious delays. And while getting your items a few days late may not be an issue in some cases, in others, it might.
3. Stores are making it easier to access online orders quickly
While two-day shipping is undoubtedly convenient, these days, there are other ways to shop online and scoop up your purchases quickly. Many big-box stores have upped their shipping and delivery game since the start of the pandemic. If you order items from one of them, not only might they arrive in two days, but you might also have the option to pick them up via curbside delivery a few hours after buying -- and not even have to exit your vehicle.
4. You can get free shipping without Prime
The upside of Amazon Prime is not having to load up your cart with extra items to meet a free shipping minimum. But the threshold at which free shipping applies for nonmembers is pretty low. All you need to do is build an order above $25 to get your items delivered at no cost. If you bundle some purchases, that's a pretty easy thing to do.
Amazon Prime definitely comes in handy for me. But that doesn't mean you should spend your hard-earned money on it. Consider what you have to gain by signing up for Prime, but don't feel silly if you come to the conclusion that it's just not worth the cost.
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