Big Change Coming to Amazon Prime: Is It Still Worth It?

Since 2005, Amazon has been offering an online shopper’s dream service -- Prime. For $79 a year, subscribers could get “free” two-day shipping on almost everything on the site, from grocery items to gifts to a purple shag rug for the family room. Those are all things I’ve ordered without paying additional shipping costs, and I don’t want to know what the cost of shipping that rug would’ve been otherwise.

So obviously I’m a member as well as a fan of Amazon Prime. But there’s some big news coming out of the rumor mill -- the cost is about to go up substantially.


Last week, Amazon execs conveyed the message that increased shipping costs will “probably force them” to raise the membership price for Prime by $20 to $40 more.

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I’m only surprised that it took so long. That $79 price tag has remained steady for the nine years since the program’s inception in 2005. Do you know what cost hasn’t stayed the same in that time? Gasoline.

In March 2005, the price of a gallon of gas in the U.S. hit an all-time high of $2.055. Today it’s $3.279 per gallon.

Tell me again how Amazon makes its deliveries? With trucks. Trucks that need fuel to run around town delivering delightful packages that arrive a mere 48 hours after ordering them. Not everything can run on cuteness and rainbows, after all.

So really, increasing the cost of Amazon Prime was inevitable, and if you’re a keen orderer like I am (who wants to drag kids to the store when you can have the store delivered to you with the click of a button?), it will still totally be worth a slightly more expensive price tag.

Do you use Amazon Prime?

Image via Alyson Hurt/Flickr

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