I’ve written in the past about how online shipping upgrades are a ripoff. Due to something that cropped up at work yesterday, however, I had to order a book from Amazon.com, and and I had to have it shipped to me overnight. What a bummer. $17 shipping on a $33 book! But when I selected the next day shipping option and proceeded to the next page, I was greeted with an offer that I couldn’t refuse… A free four month trial of Amazon Prime.
In case you haven’t heard, Amazon Prime is a deal where, for $79/year, you get free two day shipping on pretty much anything that is eligible for free Super Saver shipping, or you can pay $3.99 for overnight shipping. One of the great things about this is that there’s no minimum purchase required (Super Saver shipping is subject to a $25 minimum). The downside is that items that are sold through third parties (such as Toys’R'Us or items purchased through the Amazon Marketplace, auctions, or zShops) aren’t eligible. From my perspective, this isn’t a great deal at $79/year, as regular shipping is usually plenty fast. But that ‘no minimum purchase’ clause is a nice enticement, and the price is right as far as the trial goes — especially with Christmas coming up. Besides, it saved me $14 up front on my shipping bill.
So how did I get in on this deal? It’s hard to say. It may be that I would have received the offer no matter what, or I may have gotten it because I selected overnight shipping. If you’re interested, I’d suggest putting an eligible item in your cart and proceeding through the checkout process far enough to select next day shipping and get your final price. You should get the offer before you actually have to finalize your purchase.
Just be sure to cancel before the four months are up or you’ll get charged the $79 annual fee. The upside is that you can cancel online, and they’ll send you a couple of reminder e-mails before the free trial ends.
Interested? Here are the details straight from the horse’s mouth:
Amazon Prime Free Trial benefits
Enjoy Amazon Prime benefits at no cost for four months, starting with this order.
UNLIMITED EXPRESS SHIPPING
* Free Two-Day Shipping on over a million in-stock items sold by Amazon.com
* Overnight Shipping for only $3.99 per item
* Order as late as 6:30 p.m. ET and still get it tomorrow
* Ship to any eligible address in the contiguous United States
* No minimum purchase required
* No need to consolidate items to save on shipping
* Share the benefits of your membership with up to four family members living in the same household
As the 4-month free trial period ends, if you want to join Amazon Prime, do nothing. At that point we will enroll you in a 12-month membership and charge a $79 annual fee to the credit card listed below. If you are not interested in joining Amazon Prime after the free trial, that’s okay, too. We make it easy to cancel online any time before the trial ends, and we’ll even send you 2 reminder e-mails along the way. We’re hoping you’ll like the membership and will want to continue.