Amazon Prime membership has become a staple for many families, with about 157.4 million subscribers in the US. However, the price of an Amazon Prime membership has risen over the years, costing up to $180 per year ($139 if you pay annually).

Amazon Prime includes access to a huge number of features, but whether the service is worth it depends on whether you use what’s available. We’ll look at the cost of membership and everything that comes with it to determine if Amazon Prime is worth it for you and your family.

What is Amazon Prime?

Amazon, the world’s largest e-commerce giant, offers its customers a set of additional features and deals through a subscription program known as Amazon Prime.

When Amazon Prime launched in 2005, its primary purpose was to offer customers free two-day shipping, but today the program includes many more features.

When we take a closer look at Amazon Prime, we’ll examine each of the included features and services so you can decide if a subscription is right for you and your family.

How much is Amazon Prime?

Amazon Prime costs $14.99 per month or $139 per year, but new members can test Prime with a 30-day free trial before committing. Those who have canceled their Amazon Prime membership and have not been a member for at least 12 months can also try Prime again with a free one-month trial.

College students and those receiving qualified government assistance can get 50% off Prime memberships thanks to Amazon’s discount programs. College students also get an extended six-month free trial before payment is required.

For those who are on qualified state assistancesuch as SNAP or Medicaid, you will need to upload a photo of your EBT card or eligibility letter to Amazon.

What are the benefits of Amazon Prime?

Amazon Prime was once a simple subscription service that offered two-day shipping. Amazon now offers a collection of Prime benefits, from fast shipping to a video streaming service and free Kindle books.

Here are all the Amazon Prime benefits you can expect from a subscription.

First delivery

Amazon continues to advertise Fast Free Prime Shipping as it has been since day one; however, the service has evolved to include additional delivery benefits.

Prime now offers free one-day shipping, so you can get more than 15 million products the next day without having to wait. If that’s not fast enough, Amazon Prime also offers free same-day shipping on select items to eligible cities in the United States.

Subscribers also get access to free two-hour grocery delivery via Amazon Fresh to select US cities. When you’re not home, Amazon can leave products in your garage with the Amazon Key program or in a local pickup locker for safer delivery.

Prime video and music

Amazon Prime members have free access Prime Video and Prime musicallowing them to access entertainment with the tap of a finger or click of a remote control.

Amazon Prime Video is available on your computer and your favorite streaming devices, giving Prime members access to more than 26,000 movies and 2,700 TV series. Prime Video’s top picks include The Peripheral, The Lord of the Kings: The Rings of Power, The Boys and “Football on Thursday.”

If you want to kick back and listen to music, Amazon Prime Music has over 2 million songs ad-free. The service even allows members to listen offline — perfect for that next flight or road trip.

Prime Gaming

If you love jumping into a good video game, Amazon Prime Gaming offers benefits every month, including free in-game content and free PC games.

In recent months, Prime Gaming has offered free in-game content for Lineage II, Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege, Apex Legends, League of Legends and Pokémon GO.

When it comes to free games, Amazon doesn’t hold back, giving subscribers free downloads for Fallout 76: The Pitt, Hero’s Hour, Horace, Total War: Warhammer II, and Middle-earth: Shadow of War.

If you’d rather watch others play video games, Amazon also provides subscribers with a free subscription to the Twitch channel of your choice each month. It’s a great way to support your favorite creators and get exclusive benefits.

First reading

Those who prefer to cuddle up with a good Kindle book will love the perks that come with Prime subscribers First reading. You can access an ongoing catalog of e-books and audiobooks at no additional cost—what’s better than free books?

At the beginning of each month, Prime members can choose one free advance e-book from our editors’ selection. It’s a great way to read new stories in a variety of genres before they become available to the general public.

Magazines and comics are also included in Prime Reading.

Photo by Amazon

You may have hundreds or thousands of photos on your smartphone, but are they backed up? If it’s not, you can use it Photo by Amazonwhich offers free unlimited photo storage and 5GB of video to Prime members.

You can automatically back up full-resolution photos and videos using the Amazon Photos app on your iOS or Android device. Once you have a backup, you can sleep easier at night knowing that they are safe if your device is damaged.

Amazon Photos can also sync your content across multiple smart devices, including the Amazon Echo Show and Fire TV, where they can be used as personal screensavers. You’ll even get free shipping on every order if you want to print your photos.

Prime Try before you buy

One of the most interesting new offers is Prime Try before you buy. The service, aimed at those who like to shop for clothes online, allows you to try on outfits before paying for them. You can then return anything you don’t like to Amazon for free.

Prime members start by choosing up to six items from Amazon’s Try Before You Buy program. The goods will then be shipped to you. Customers have seven days to try out items before being charged for what they keep.

If you order something you don’t like, Amazon will give you several return options.

Prime discounts and offers

A Prime membership wouldn’t be complete without exclusive member offers. Amazon has member-only sales going on throughout the year, so check back savings page when you jump aboard the Prime train.

It is characteristic First day of Amazona “once-a-year savings event” similar to Black Friday sales and traditionally occurs in late spring or early summer.

We typically see significant discounts on a variety of products, including Amazon Brands, Fire TVs, Echo devices, Kindles, Fire tablets, and Blink home security equipment.

Other Prime benefits include Rx savingswhich allows you to search for your medicines and compare their prices at different pharmacies, and a a free one-year subscription to Grubhub+.

Is Amazon Prime worth the price?

As with many questions in life, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer to whether Amazon Prime is worth it for you and your family. But you can start by determining how many Amazon Prime benefits you use.

Paying for high-speed shipping can add up quickly; if you order from Amazon half a dozen times a month, Prime’s monthly price for same-day and next-day shipping can be worth it right up front.

Most video and music streaming services will cost around $10 per month (not including Netflix, which charges up to $20 a month), so Prime’s monthly price tag might be worth it just for access to Prime Video and Prime Music.

If you’re already an Amazon Prime member, be sure to explore the benefits the program offers and take advantage of all that’s available to you.

Some members may not even be aware of features like backing up photos from their mobile devices through Amazon Photos and being able to try on clothes through the Try Before You Buy program.

Of course, you can always cancel your Amazon Prime membership and see how much you miss the service; your needs determine the actual cost.

Is the Amazon Prime Card worth it?

Amazon also offers its own Prime Rewards Visa Signature card to eligible members. Card benefits include 5% cash back on purchases at and physical Amazon stores (Prime membership required), as well as rewards at other qualifying locations.

When you shop at restaurants, gas stations, and drugstores, you’ll get 2% back when you use your Prime card. You can save 1% on other purchases. Prime members can also earn 10% or more on select items and categories on

If you frequent Amazon, the Prime card is definitely worth it based on its rewards program. Before diving in, read our article understanding credit card rewardsso you can get the most out of your Prime card.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What’s the point of getting Amazon Prime?

An Amazon Prime Membership unlocks a variety of discounts and features, including free same-day, one-day, and two-day shipping on millions of items. Prime also gives subscribers access to programs such as Prime Video, Prime Music and Amazon Photos.

Is Amazon Prime better than Netflix?

Amazon Prime membership includes its own Prime Video streaming service. Which service is best depends on what kind of content you like to watch.

Netflix offers exclusive series such as Stranger Things, 13 Reasons Why, Peaky Blinders, Ozark, and Umbrella Academy.

Meanwhile, Amazon Prime offers Good Omens, Bosch, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel and The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power.

Why is Amazon Prime so expensive?

Amazon Prime membership has gotten more expensive over the years, but so have the benefits.

Amazon Prime is no longer limited to two-day shipping; now it includes access thousands of free movies, TV shows, novels, magazines, comics and more.

Michael Archambault is a senior writer at The Penny Hoarder specializing in technology.

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