Last year Amazon released a service called Prime Pantry. Have you tried it out yet? Prime Pantry allows shoppers a fast and easy way to order essential non-perishable brand name items in everyday sizes. I've been playing with Prime Pantry for a while now and wanted to share some do's and don'ts and secrets you need to know.
1 – Prime Members Only: You must be a Prime member to use Prime Pantry. If you aren't a member you can sign up for a free trial (one free trial per Amazon account). If the $99 a year membership is too costly for you, remember that you can SHARE your membership with family and friends outside of your home. Go here to find out how.
2 – Know your prices: Like all Amazon shopping not everything is a good deal. In-fact some of the Prime Pantry items are WAY over inflated and prices are never consistent. Just like grocery shopping, you MUST know your everyday prices and best sale prices for the items you use everyday, and like the grocery store, Amazon gives you the price per ounce or unit. Look for it and any available coupons in the product description.
You can see in my example above, the same size Special K cereal (currently priced for $3.92 on Prime Pantry OFTEN goes on sale at Smith's for $1.99 (without any coupons). If you are armed with this knowledge for the products you use regularly, you'll be able to shop with confidence. SIZE MATTERS!
3- Size Matters: Make sure you are aware of the size you are purchasing. You may think you are buying a common size and find that when your shipment arrives it's much smaller than you thought.
4 – Shipping: The box holds 45 pounds and can be filled completely or with just a few items. The choice is yours. However, shipping is a flat $5.99 so consider filling it up with as much as you can.
Secret Shipping tip: Each month Amazon will release a coupon code for free shipping. In order to use the code, you will need to purchase 4 select items. You can mix and match your purchase. Look for the offer under the “Special Deals” tab at the top of the page on the far right. You'll also find special sales in that section.
4 – Use the coupons: ALWAYS check the Prime Pantry coupon section (you may want to book mark it). You'll find coupon savings for up to 25% off the product price. These are often the better bargains.
So, is Prime Pantry worth it? That depends on you and your shopping habits and needs. For me, I'm giving it a 4 on scale of 1-10. If you are like me, an avid couponer who watches and shops the sales, Prime Pantry will probably not be for you. While most of the everyday Prime Pantry savings are comparable to regular grocery store prices, you'll rarely find the rock bottom pricing couponers spot.
However, Prime Pantry can be of value for shipping a care package to a college student or elderly person, for those that live in rural areas and need to save on gas expenses, for city dwellers that have little time or limited transportation for getting to the store. Or, for those that just don't have time to get to the store.