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- An Amazon Prime membership comes with free two-day shipping, access to tens of thousands of hours of video and audio content, grocery discounts, and many more great perks.
- More than 51% of American households now use Amazon Prime, and the United States Post Office has reported a 54% increase in package deliveries in the past five years.
- Signing up for Amazon Prime is quick and easy and can cost as little as $6.49 a month for students, and less than $10 a month for everyone else.
- Here’s how to sign up for an Amazon Prime Membership and unlock two-day shipping and other great perks.
Amazon Prime, the fast and free shipping service launched by Amazon in early 2005, has changed the way Americans shop for just about everything. It has also changed the way many of us watch TV and movies, listen to music, read books, and even store our personal photos and videos. Also, in some places, you can order food for delivery via Prime.
Are you asking yourself: “Should I sign up for Amazon Prime?” The answer is probably yes, if you want to be like an estimated 51.7% of the population of the United States. That’s the number of households that have a Prime membership, according to a recent study by Prime Mailboxes (ironically, no relation to Amazon!). And United States Postal Service data show that USPS package deliveries have gone up by more than 54% in the past five years, with Amazon accounting for much of it.
Also, you can take it from me: I’ve been a Prime member and devotee since 2006. We go way back.
So if you want free, two-day shipping on baby clothes, seltzer water, sleeping bags, cat litter, and a million other things, or access to hundreds of TV shows and movies, both old and new, and a massive catalog of songs, books, and other media, then you really should sign up for Prime.
Ah, but how much does Amazon Prime cost? The best route is the annual membership, which means a once yearly cost of $119, or about $9.91 a month. You can also start out with a free month, and then opt for monthly billing if you’re still unsure. The cost of monthly Amazon Prime membership is $12.99, which works out to $155.88, a good deal more expensive than the annual rate.
Students can enjoy a monthly rate of just $6.49, however, or only $77.88 per year, and can also take advantage of a six-month free trial period. And don’t forget about the gift of Prime: You can sign someone up for a gift membership for the same $119 annual rate or for a three-month Prime gift subscription for $38.97. Or you can ask for the gift of Prime for your birthday, now armed with all the info your gift getter needs.
Assuming you’re convinced that an Amazon Prime membership is right for you, here’s how to sign up for Prime.
How to sign up for Prime
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Before you can sign up for an Amazon Prime membership, you need to have a basic Amazon account. And for the record, if you only order a few things online each year, a free basic Amazon account may be all you need, but it comes without any access to media and with slower and (of course) pricier shipping.
To sign up for an Amazon account and then an Amazon Prime membership follow these steps:
- Go to Amazon.
- Hover over (or tap on mobile) where it says Hello, Sign in and Accounts & Lists in the top right corner of the screen.
- On the drop down menu, click Start Here under the New Customer? question.
- Enter your name, email, and a password in the fields provided, then click Create Your Amazon Account.
- You will be automatically signed in or you can sign in using the same Hello, Sign in link if you wish to proceed with Prime membership later.
Now to continue to the matter at hand.
You’re a few clicks, a free trial, and then a payment away from fast, free shipping, lots of movies and music, discounted eats from Whole Foods, and a whole lot more.
To sign up for a Prime membership, follow these steps:
- Sign in to your basic Amazon account.
- Click on your account icon on the top right (it should say Hello, Your Name where before it said Hello, Sign in.).
- Click Prime Membership from the dropdown menu.
- On the next page, select Start your free trial, and make sure to opt for the six-month option if you’re verifiably a student.
- Select the type of Prime membership you want, from the $8 video-only option to the monthly payment plan for everything to the annual fee for everything.
- Enter credit or debit card info when prompted, or select the card already on file (from your basic membership) that you want to be charged for membership.
- Confirm your billing and shipping address(es).
- Enjoy Amazon Prime – yours is now in the majority of American households.
Check out our other guides to Amazon Prime to learn about all the perks that are included in a membership
- 29 useful Amazon Prime benefits to know that go beyond free 2-day shipping
- 20 Amazon shopping hacks that will help you get the most out of the site – even if you don’t have a Prime membership
- Amazon Prime costs $119 a year – here are 14 reasons that more than justify its price
- A little-known ‘no-rush’ shipping option on Amazon rewards Prime members with additional discounts on future purchases – here’s what you need to know
- This little-known Amazon hack helps keep your gift purchases a secret while sharing Prime benefits with family
- Here’s how much two-day shipping without Prime costs on Amazon – and why it’s worth signing up for a membership