Amazon has become a one stop shop for many of my purchases. Whether I’m looking for AirPods or shower curtains, the mega retailer seems to have it all. However, like any other retailer, Amazon doesn’t always offer the lowest prices. Of course, there are many good Amazon offers there, but most of the time I buy from Amazon for convenience. This is especially true since I am an Amazon Prime member.
Over the past decade, I’ve discovered various tips and tricks to ensure I always get the best price on Amazon. Some of these tips may be familiar to you, while others are a bit more obscure. So I’m sharing all my Amazon tips to help you shop like a pro and ensure you always get the best Amazon deal possible.
Get a Prime membership to avoid price hikes
The price of an Amazon Prime subscription is about to increase. The e-commerce giant has announced that it is increasing the price of its Prime subscription from $119 per year to $139 per year. Monthly subscriptions will also go from $12.99 to $14.99. Increases will begin February 18, 2022 for new members or March 25, 2022 for current members. However, current members can dodge the price hike by treat yourself to a Prime membership for $119. You will then need to manually end your Prime subscription the day before it expires. (This will prevent automatic renewal). Then redeem your “gifted” membership to enjoy Prime for one more year at $119.
Always look for digital discount codes
One of the biggest ways to save money on Amazon is also one of the easiest. The retailer tends to offer digital discount codes on thousands of products. Sometimes the coupon will apply automatically. Other times, you have to manually select the coupon box to ensure you get the discount. The trick here is that digital coupons are very easy to ignore. When available, you will see a small radio box below the Amazon price. Click the box and the coupon will automatically be applied at checkout. It’s such an easy trick, but it’s also very easy to overlook.
Enjoy Amazon Freebies
Amazon likes to give gifts. From Kindle books to cloud storage, there are plenty of Amazon freebies available for Prime members. Even the Prime membership itself can be free (for the first 30 days). Unfortunately, Amazon doesn’t offer a guide to all of its freebies. However, some of my personal favorites include:
- Free Reading: Prime members have access to over a thousand books, magazines, comics and more through Prime Reading. Best of all, you don’t need a Kindle to get your free books. The Kindle app can turn virtually any iOS or Android device into your preferred method of reading.
- Free film streaming: I admit, I’m more team netflix I’m not Prime Video, but as a Prime member I have free access to thousands of movies and shows on Prime Video. You do not know where to start ? Be sure to check out our list of best movies on amazon prime video.
- Free music streaming: Amazon Music Prime offers Prime members free access to 2 million songs. I’m a huge music fan, so I have to warn you that you don’t always have access to the latest songs or the greatest artists. Sam Fender’s excellent Seventeen Going Under, for example, requires Unlimited music; however, The Weeknd’s new Dawn FM album is free for Prime members.
- Free photo storage: Prime members can get unlimited cloud storage for their digital photos via Amazon Pics. Yes, you read that right: unlimited storage at full resolution. You also get 5GB of video storage. (Non-members get 5GB of combined photo and video storage).
Make the most of the free Prime membership
There are a ton of benefits to being a Prime member. However, I understand that not everyone can afford to pay $119/year to become a member. Luckily, there are a few hacks around this membership price. The easiest way is to register 30-day free trial from Amazon. (This only works for non-members or those who haven’t been a Prime member in the last year). Alternatively, you can share a Prime membership with someone else. It will need to be someone you trust, as you will need to share wallets in order to share Prime benefits. (You can manage your fireplace settings through the Amazon website). Finally, you can choose to go monthly. You’ll pay $12.99/month, which is more expensive than paying for a full year, but you can activate your subscription on months when you know you’ll be shopping a lot, such as Black Friday season or during Prime Day deals. On months when you don’t need a Prime subscription, you can cancel your subscription.
Enjoy Amazon Prime Student
If you are a student, Amazon Prime Student is a must. Not only do you get a 6 month free trial, but you’ll also pay half the price of a traditional Prime membership. Students will pay $59/year or $6.49/month for membership. Students also get exclusive deals like textbook discounts, e-textbook rentals, Music Unlimited for just $0.99/month (was $7.99/month for regular Prime members), and a 2 month free trial of Kindle Unlimited (was 1 month free).
Always buy with Camelizer
Not every deal you come across on Amazon will save you money. To know if a product is really on sale I rely on CamelCamelCamel, a website that displays price history for most items sold on Amazon. Simply paste the full Amazon URL of the product into CamelCamelCamel and the site will show you a price chart outlining the price history of this device on Amazon. Personally, I prefer to use their browser extension, The camelizer, which allows you to view price charts directly from your browser. Keep in mind that it doesn’t track everything Amazon sells and price history isn’t always 100% accurate, but it’s a great tool that every Amazon shopper should use.
Buy Amazon Warehouse if you’re okay with refurbished
One of the easiest ways to save money on electronics is to buy used items. I’m usually very hesitant to recommend used tech, but the Amazon Warehouse does a good job of refurbishing old appliances. First of all, they describe the condition of the item well. Descriptions range from “used – like new” to “used – acceptable”. That said, you should always check the product page to make sure the warranty information is clear, and to make sure the item is sold by Amazon Warehouse (or a third party you trust).
Check out these hidden coupon offers
Whenever I shop for household items, one of the first pages I go to is Amazon Coupons Page. I’ve found that eight out of 10 times I’ll find a coupon for things I buy frequently like Tide pods, deodorant, household cleaners, and cough and flu medicine. The coupon section also has a page dedicated to foodstuffswith discounts on things like PopCorners (it’s my new addiction), Quaker granola bars, and protein powders.
Trade in your old devices for Amazon credits
I currently own a 3rd Generation Amazon Echo and 3rd Generation Echo Dot. When Amazon unveils its 5th Gen devices later this fall, I plan to trade in my older smart speakers for discounts on Amazon’s new devices. Anyone can do it via Amazon Exchange Shop. You’ll get Amazon credit for the device you’re trading in, plus an additional 20%-25% off select Amazon devices. If you really want to save, you can trade in when the Amazon device you want is on sale. (Amazon device sales are so frequent, you’ll probably only have to wait a week or two for the item you want to list). In addition to Amazon devices, you can also trade in Bluetooth speakers, headphones, and gaming gear.
Opt for less popular colors/configurations for the biggest discount
Not everyone wants a rose gold-colored iPad Air. As a result, Amazon tends to offer bigger discounts on less desirable devices. So while the iPad Air Space Gray may sell for the list price, the Rose-colored tablet may be $50 off. I see it every day when I search for deals on Amazon. Likewise, the more expensive configurations (e.g. the 1TB model) can sometimes get bigger discounts than the base models. This happens not only with technological devices, but with most items of different colors, such as coffee machines, blankets, mixers, etc. Bottom line – not all Amazon deals are cut from the same cloth, so it’s worth checking out all of a device’s configurations until you find the best price.