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Everything you need to know about shopping at Amazon before Prime Day 2024


If you've experienced the thrill that is Amazon Prime Day, Amazon's annual big sale coming this summer, you know the mega-retailer offers major discounts on top-selling favorites like smart thermostats, Apple AirPods and so much more. 

This year's big event is taking place on Tuesday, July 16 and Wednesday, July 17, 2024, so mark your calendars. To access Prime Day 2024 deals, you'll need an Amazon Prime membership. Additionally, knowing all the tips and tricks for shopping on Amazon will help you make the most of your Prime membership.

We'd like to think of ourselves as having a healthy fascination (obsession?) with all things Amazon and we know we're not alone. But we like nothing more than to pass our Amazon knowledge on to fellow Amazon lovers. Keep reading for everything you need to know about an Amazon Prime membership and how to maximize it, including details on how to get 50% off a new membership.

What is Amazon Prime?

Amazon Prime Try Before You Buy

You've probably heard of Amazon Prime (especially if you're reading this). According to Amazon, as of 2021, its Amazon Prime service has more than 200 million subscribers worldwide. But if you're not one of the retail giant's Prime members, then you may wonder why the program has captured so many paying customers. 

Thinking about becoming a Prime member? We've got all your Prime Day 2024 answers covered — plus early Amazon deals you can snag right now on home, fitness gear, tech and more.

Before signing up, here's what you need to know about Amazon Prime. The short answer is this: Amazon Prime is a lot of things -- major benefits wrapped up into one monthly or annual subscription.

Right now, Amazon is offering 50% off for three months of Prime, making it just $7.50 per month -- a huge reduction from its typical cost of $15 monthly. (Note that some shoppers are seeing a different introductory offer.)

When is Amazon Prime Day 2024?

Amazon Prime Day 2024 has been announced for Tuesday, July 16 and Wednesday, July 17, 2024. The annual event will feature Prime Member-exclusive deals on many of Amazon's bestselling products, from tech to home goods to TikTok-famous beauty finds.

How much does Amazon Prime cost? What's up with the price increase?

There are two ways to subscribe to Amazon Prime. The cheapest approach is to subscribe on an annual basis, where the service will cost you $139 per year, plus tax (where applicable). 

If you prefer a shorter-term commitment, Amazon offers a monthly subscription for $15 per month, plus tax. Know that if you opt for a monthly subscription, and then stick with it, you'll wind up paying more per year over the cost of an annual subscription. 

Looking to score a deal on a Prime membership? This is your opportunity to save big ahead of Prime Day. Right now, you can get 3 months of Prime for just $7.50 per month.  

After that, your Prime membership will go back to $15 per month or $139 annually. There are also discounts available for students and recipients of qualifying government assistance programs (SNAP, Medicaid).

Does Amazon offer an Amazon Prime free trial? 

If you're an Amazon Prime rookie, good news: The company offers a 30-day free trial. You can use the free trial period to give Amazon's biggest and best Prime benefits a whirl before making a decision -- or spending a dollar on a membership.

What are the benefits of Amazon Prime?

While we've been able to single out the top 5 Amazon Prime benefits, there are dozens of benefits for subscribers. Here's a breakdown of some of the biggest benefits of an Amazon Prime membership.

Prime members get free two-day shipping -- and more

Prime Day
Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

One key perk of Amazon Prime is access to free two-day shipping on eligible Amazon purchases. No minimum purchase is required. 

The shipping benefits don't end there. In some areas, and for some items, Amazon offers Prime members free, one-day, overnight -- and even same-day -- shipping on orders totaling more than $35.

Amazon Prime Video

Another major source of Amazon Prime's value comes from its Prime Video streaming service. Amazon spends billions of dollars a year on unlimited streaming content for Prime members. Acclaimed Amazon Original Series titles include "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel," "The Boys" and "Modern Love." Beyond that, there's a lot of TV and movie fare to stream (good news for fans of "Step Brothers" and "The Hills"), making Amazon Prime a solid Netflix alternative.

If you want all the streaming content, but none of the other benefits of Amazon Prime, then you can buy a Prime Video subscription for $8.99 a month, plus tax. As with Amazon Prime, Prime Video subscriptions start with a 30-day free trial. 

Amazon Prime members get Whole Foods deals

In some areas, Amazon Prime members get free, two-hour grocery pickup from its supermarket Amazon Fresh. Delivery is also available for $10.

Additionally, Amazon Prime members get 10 percent off in-store sale prices (excluding alcohol) from Amazon's other supermarket: Whole Foods. They also benefit from special in-store Whole Foods deals marked with blue Prime member signs.

Amazon Key

Amazon Key is another delivery benefit included with an Amazon Prime membership.

When you select "Key Delivery" at checkout, your items will be delivered to your garage (instead of your doorstep) at no added cost. Amazon Key can be linked to work with a Ring app, or with a MyQ compatible garage door opener ($22).

As much as anything, this Amazon Prime perk delivers peace of mind: No more worrying if your 7-in-1 Instant Pot Duo Nova will be swiped by porch pirates before you get home.

Free Kindle books

An Amazon Prime membership works quite well with the company's flagship e-reader, the Kindle. The Prime Reading benefit offers free access to more than 3,000 books and magazines. Think of it as a digital lending library: You can download up to 10 titles at a time.

Prime members also have access to First Reads. Each month, through the Prime benefit, Prime members get one free Kindle download of a yet-to-be-released title, chosen from a selection of editors' picks. 

Amazon Music Prime

Via Amazon Music Prime, Amazon Prime members enjoy access to thousands of stations and playlists -- for a total of 2 million songs. 

For access to 100 million songs, you can upgrade to Amazon Music Unlimited, for $9.99 per month. (You can try the service via a 30-day free trial.) Non-Prime members can purchase Amazon Music Unlimited for $10.99 a month.

Prime Gaming

Another feature of Amazon Prime is Prime Gaming, which offers free games and free in-game content to members. Prime Gaming also entitles you to a free subscription to a channel of your choice on the Amazon-owned, as well as free, exclusive emoticons. 

Amazon Prime Day and Prime Early Access

Amazon Prime Day is an annual, two-day sales event exclusively for Prime members. Many of the recent, high-profile Prime Day deals have been compelling, with TV dealsAmazon Echo smart home devices, air fryers and more -- all going on sale.

While Prime Day comes but once a year (usually in July), Prime Early Access regularly gives Prime members 30-minute-advance access to limited-quantity, limited-time sales known on Amazon as "Lightning Deals." In recent years there has also been a fall follow-up sale, titled Prime Big Deal Days in 2023, an October sale that also included Prime member exclusive savings.

Amazon Photos unlimited storage

You read that right: An Amazon Prime membership confers unlimited, full-resolution photo storage via Amazon Photos. Video storage is available, too -- up to 5 GB is included with your Prime membership. If you have a lot of video, then you can buy additional storage space; Amazon plans start at $1.99 a month for 100 GB. 

Should you ever cancel or fail to renew your Prime membership, then your total storage space, for photos and video combined, is capped at 5 GB.  

Amazon Household

If you're an Amazon Prime member, you can share certain Prime benefits, including Prime Delivery and Prime Video, with up to two adults in your household via Amazon Household. This is not about you sharing passwords on the hush-hush. This is about you creating official, linked accounts for your roommates, grandparents or whoever. 

You may similarly add up to four accounts for teenagers (ages 13-17) and up to four accounts for children (ages 12 and younger). The teen and child accounts come with guardrails -- i.e., any purchases by your teens have to go through you first, and your child's access to digital content is managed per your settings. And not to worry: The 12-year-olds and younger are not allowed to shop via their Amazon Household accounts.

Prime Try Before You Buy

Have you ever seen the movie montage where the hero goes to a boutique, and tries on outfit after outfit while "Walking on Sunshine" plays on the soundtrack? Prime Try Before You Buy (previously known as Prime Wardrobe) allows Amazon Prime members to go on fashionista sprees like that, minus the "Walking on Sunshine" part (unless, of course, you access the song on Amazon Prime Music). 

Have select clothes, shoes, jewelry and accessories shipped to your door via Prime Try Before You Buy. Try everything on, and take up to seven days to decide what you want. Ship back the rejects for free -- or, conversely, as Amazon puts it, only pay for what you keep.

Is Prime membership worth it?

Is Prime membership worth it?
Edward Smith/Getty Images

If you're not a regular Amazon shopper (and don't plan to become one), chances are Amazon Prime isn't a good fit -- the cost will probably outweigh the benefits. Similarly, if you're a regular Walmart shopper, Walmart+ is a good alternative to Amazon Prime.

But if you're already a frequent Amazon customer, then it may make sense to join the Amazon Prime club, if only for the unlimited, two-day shipping benefits, and the chance to shop until you drop on the next Amazon Prime Day.

Products we love at Amazon right now

Amazon currently has plenty of summer deals and terrific prices available to shop now. Check some of our top picks below.

Keurig K-Classic coffee maker: Save 47%


Pod-based coffee is convenient and fast -- maybe the quickest way to make a cup of coffee to start your day. If you're looking for a reliable, simple-to-use machine that delivers a great-tasting cup of coffee, you should check out the Keurig K-Classic coffee maker. 

Another great reason to check out the Keurig K-Classic coffee maker? Amazon has it on sale for nearly half its regular price ahead of Prime Day 2024, You'll pay just $80, reduced from $150.

Govee Smart LED strip lights: $19 (save $6)

Govee Smart LED strip lights

Don't want to install lighting for your TV, or want to get more creative with where you place your lights? Get a strip of them instead. This smart LED light strip can go wherever you'd like to put it, and it comes in a variety of lengths, starting at 16.4 feet.

Control your Govee LED strip lights with the accompanying app or with your voice to customize their behavior. They can sync with your favorite songs thanks to their built-in microphone, and they'll "dance" along to the beat without you having to program them to do so.

With more than 150 LED lights, there are plenty in each strip to illuminate a small or large room, so these lights are perfect to put up just about anywhere you want to liven up a bit.

Right now, you can clip the on-page coupon to get $6 off your strip lights. You'll see the discount applied automatically when you check out.

Apple AirTags: $25


These reliable trackers send out Bluetooth signals meant to be detected by other devices  (anonymously) that pop up via Apple's "Find My" map. They use the entire worldwide network of connected iOS devices to help you find anything you've misplaced. So that means you can locate them, whether in your luggage, briefcase, bag or tucked away in a pocket, using your iPhone. You can use the phone's "Precision Finding" feature to locate the item your tracker is attached to.

Thanks to their long-lasting battery, you can leave Apple AirTags connected to your belongings for up to one year. They're also water-resistant in case you happen to get caught in the rain while carrying one.

Regularly $30 each, you can find them on Amazon now for $25 ahead of Prime Day.

12" All-Clad D3 stainless fry pan with lid: Save $50

Sur La Table

Considering how much this All-Clad pan has going for it, this deal is a real steal. It's lighter in weight compared to cast iron skillets and, unlike nonstick pans, it can handle high-heat cooking (you can put this in the oven up to 600 degrees). Its aluminum core allows the pan to heat quickly, hold onto heat well and distribute it evenly. And at 12 inches in diameter, you have plenty of room to sauté veggies for a stir fry or get a nice sear on a few pieces of salmon. We really like that this works with induction cooktops and that the skillet comes with a lid, which makes stove-to-oven cooking both safe and easy (glass lids can't handle high oven temperatures). 

The pan's beautiful exterior material, stainless steel, is durable enough that when taken care of properly, it can last years.

The All-Clad D3 stainless steel frying pan has a 4.8-star rating on Amazon. One reviewer wrote: "Had this pan for 2-plus years. I use it almost every day and it's still perfect. Just a bit of monthly maintenance and it'll last forever. Definitely worth the money."

Another verified customer said, "I recently got rid of all my Teflon-type cookware and am replacing [it] with All-Clad D3. I absolutely love this cookware and once you learn how to properly cook on it (heat the pan sufficiently first before adding oil or food--check out the vids on YouTube), it's wonderful to cook on. The food even tastes better, more crispy. And it's freakin' beautiful." 

iRobot Roomba Vac Essential robot vacuum: $220 (12% off)


Featuring a three-stage cleaning system, the iRobot Roomba Vac Essential robot vacuum can handle carpets and hard surface floors like a pro. The robot vacuum also has three levels of suction power, so you can choose between a more thorough clean and quiet operation.

We like that the iRobot Roomba Vac Essential can be scheduled to clean automatically in neat rows, or can start cleaning via Alexa voice commands. There's also a spot-cleaning setting where the robot will spin in place for up to two minutes.

It cleans for up to 120 minutes on a single charge and automatically returns to its base when its battery is low. The vacuum will alert you when its filter or brushes need replacing.

Regularly $250, you can get this budget robot vacuum for just $220 at Amazon now ahead of Amazon Prime Day 2024.

Apple AirPods (2nd generation): $89 (31% off)

Apple AirPods (2nd Generation)

The second-generation Apple AirPods may not be the latest model, but they're still one of the most sought-after earbuds on the market. These are some of the most versatile earbuds you can buy if you're a regular iOS user. But beyond that, these are great earbuds that are perfect for tossing in your bag and heading out into the world. They just connect when you need them. There's no frustrating need to pair them. 

These 4.7-star-rated earbuds boast more than 24 hours of total listening time with the wireless charging case, fool-proof one-tap setup for Apple device owners and a low-latency wireless connection for full immersion when consuming movies and music.  If you need an everyday set of earbuds that look and feel premium, these are a great and affordable option. 

Why we like the Apple AirPods (2nd Generation):

  • Their clear and high-quality sound makes for immersive listening. 
  • They feature a one-tap setup and intuitive controls for better convenience. 
  • They have an impressive battery life of over 24 hours with the charging case, and quick charging for on-the-go.

Keurig K-Mini coffee maker: $60 (40% off)


If you're running out of counter space in your kitchen, adding a new appliance can be difficult. But you probably won't have that problem with the Keurig K-Mini -- this single-serve pod coffee maker measures just 4.5 inches wide, 12.1 inches tall and 11.3 inches deep. It brews up to 12 ounces of coffee in just minutes.

This 4.5-star-rated Amazon bestseller is available in six colors.

Black and Decker 20V Max cordless tire inflator: $67 (19% off)


A lifesaver in emergencies, the Black and Decker cordless tire inflator ensures you can quickly inflate tires and other items when needed. Equipped with 12V DC, 120V AC, and 20V Max battery options, it features a digital gauge with automatic shutoff that stops the unit once the desired pressure is reached. 

Black and Decker 20V Max cordless tire inflator, $67 (down from $80)

Rockland Melbourne 20-inch expandable carry-on: $65 (53% off) 

Rockland Melbourne Hardside Expandable Spinner Wheel Luggage

The Rockland Melbourne 20-inch expandable carry-on spinner is made out of ABS, a lightweight and durable plastic. It features multidirectional double spinner wheels with telescoping handles, along with interior zip and mesh pockets. Choose from multiple colors. Price varies by color. Right now, you'll get the best deal on the carry-on in the shade purple, it's currently 53% off. 

"I was able to fit a lot more than I thought in this little suitcase," an Amazon reviewer shares. "It's easy to maneuver and even with the extension added to it it's small enough to fit airplanes' carry-on requirements." 

It usually sells for $140, but right now you can buy this carry-on for just $65.

Why we like the Rockland Melbourne 20-inch carry-on:

  • The carry-on meets size restrictions for most major airlines, including United, American, Delta, Southwest and Allegiant.
  • It earned a 4.5-star rating on Amazon with more than 8,500 reviews.
  • The ergonomic handle and seamless spinner wheels make it easy to maneuver.

Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Card

The Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Card is an enhanced version of the Amazon Rewards Visa Card. Both cards offer cash-back bonuses, and neither has an annual fee, but only Amazon Prime members can apply for the Prime Rewards Visa. 

Prime members can earn 5 percent back on Amazon and Whole Foods purchases made with the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa (versus 3 percent offered by the regular Amazon Rewards Visa). There's a host of other rewards too, including a $150 Amazon gift card upon approval for the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa.   

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