One of my favorite mom-friendly online services is the all-encompassing Amazon Prime. There aren't many memberships that are as versatile, valuable, and convenient.
From food and baby gear to gifts and electronics, if you need it, you can find it on Amazon. For $99 a year, I can review items and order as needed from my couch with a glass of wine in hand. Here are some of the selling points that make the service a must have in my life:
Free, 2-day shipping.
I can find almost everything I need and once I put the order in I rarely find myself waiting the full 48 hours to receive my goods. Amazon does a great job of keeping me informed about buying history, current needs, refunds and when to expect my next order. They make it very easy to use.
Subscribe and Save (life changing!).
With the Subscribe and Save (S&S) feature, I can save even more on things that I already all the time. If you place one item on S&S the price is discounted by 5%. If you have 5 items on subscription in a one month time period you save 15%. Below is a photo of all the different items in my S&S queue. Some of the items I have set to deliver every month, others I need every other month or once every 6 months. Note: you're not ordering the same 5 items each month (although you can), but rather a mix of different things depending on your needs. Here are some of the more common items purchased through the program:
- Snacks: Lara bars, Kind bars…
- Kitchen: trash bags, cleaner, sponges…
- Bathroom: tooth brushes, toilet paper, tampons…
- Kids: diapers, wipes, lotions, baby wash…
- laundry detergent, paper towels, batteries, and more!
Here's a screen shot of my S&S page showing my upcoming deliveries. Amazon is very clear in communicating the last day you have to make updates or changes to your order plus the date that your payment will process for that month's order. The main key is to have 5 items in the row so that you can get the 15% savings across the board. You can easily move items from one row to another as well as skip a subscription. Just make sure you have 5 for the month! You can also put some really inexpensive items on S&S to help you hit your 5!
Prime Instant Video (400,000 free titles!).
When I want to watch classics like Lawrence of Arabia or old favorites like Spaceballs, this definitely adds value to the $99 subscription fee. I can stop the video when I need to and pick back up anytime, on any device. When mommy duty calls, it’s a win-win. My kids also benefit from the many included kid-friendly titles from Oswald to Stuart Little 2. Check out the pay-per-view movies for a small added fee if you can’t find something on the free Prime list.
I can listen to individual songs or pre-made playlists that come with my Prime subscription. Sometimes you just need more Billy Joel in your life, and Prime has it ready to go for me. It’s ad-free and works on all my devices so I can take it with me wherever I go.
Whether you want to use it as a backup or as your main storage site, you can upload any photos you want to the cloud through the photo service. Access them from a number of devices or re-download them as necessary. It’s secure and has an unlimited storage capacity for as long as you carry your Prime subscription.
The Amazon Mom program is similar to the regular Prime membership, but has extra benefits for items that families need on a regular basis like 20% off diapers with a subscription or a 15% discount for completing a baby registry through Amazon. They also offer Amazon Mom coupons specifically for us moms. There is a free 30 day “Try it out” offer and then you have to bite the bullet and upgrade to Prime to continue the mom-specific benefits.
I have found some of my favorite products for my kids thanks to thoughtful, well-written reviews from moms all over the world. Having access to this virtual community isn't a Prime-specific feature but it's definitely worth mentioning.
These are only a few of the great services I get with my Amazon Prime membership. Plus you can try Prime out for free for 30 days which is cool. Still undecided? Here's the link to Amazon's Prime membership page where they do their best to sell you on all the great benefits! You won't regret it!