To the horror of some of its customers Amazon Prime has announced that the annual membership fee is about to go up. We guess it’s the fact that shelling out $79 a year was just too good to be true, because now members will have to spend $99 a year on their Amazon Prime membership.
In an e-mail to all of Amazon’s prime members the site announced that transportation costs have increased, hence the increase in the yearly price. This difference in price is the first huge change in nine years from the online retail service.
The Amazon Prime e-mail continues:
“Since 2005, the number of items eligible for unlimited free Two-Day Shipping has grown from one million to over 20 million. We also added unlimited access to over 40,000 movies and TV episodes with Prime Instant Video and a selection of over 500,000 books to borrow from the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library.”
If Amazon Prime members are confused, it looks like the site has cleared up any questions on when this payment of $99 a year begins. On the actual site Amazon adds:
“If your membership renews before April 17, 2014, you’ll be charged at a membership rate of $79. If your membership renews on or after April 17, 2014, you’ll be charged at a membership rate of $99.”
The question becomes if Amazon Prime is worth the extra $20 it’s decided to charge members. According to Twitter it still seems like a great price for an even better service. Those who were supportive of the change by Amazon Prime took to Twitter to sway angry members.
Wait, so you mean Amazon Prime will no longer be the same price as it’s been for the last nine years?! That’s… completely reasonable.
— Kevin Fox (@kfury) March 13, 2014
“It was never about the $79, it was really about changing people’s mentality, so they wouldn’t shop anywhere else.” http://t.co/7RJOW9R9al
— Jordan Isip (@fixie) March 13, 2014
While others are angry about the price change, there’s one company out there that’s taking advantage. New site ShopRunner, a rival of Amazon, is trying to jump on the price increase. The company has decided to launch a better plan by partnering with brick-and-mortar for a two-day shipping at Amazon Prime’s original price of $79 a year. Our guess is that while this is a smart business move, their model probably can’t compete with the stream library that Amazon offers their customers.
To combat angry customers Amazon has decided to encourage people to beat out the system by signing up in the next seven days in order to take advantage of the $79 fee for the first year. We expect the price to increase the following year for new members or those who already made their payment for Amazon Prime.