Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Is Amazon Prime worth it?

After maybe the hundreth trip to the vending machine at work during a very stressful week, I'd had enough. I decided to order in as many healthy snacks as possible through Amazon's subscribe & save. I wasn't really comparing prices as much as just looking for veggie-based snacks. Wasabi peas anyone? (I'm open to suggestions. Best, easy, veggie-based snacks - go!) My office now has earned the nickname "the bodega."

Recently, a friend of mine was raving about Amazon Mom. I'm past the diapers phase (thank you, thank you, thank you) so I wasn't sure if it was for me but I signed up anyway. In the process, I accidently signed up for Amazon Prime at the cost of $79 for a year. I thought about canceling but then decided this is my chance to experiment. I fear I may become addicted to the Amazon coupon page. *sigh*

But it's OK if I do it in the name of research, right? So for the next year, I'm going to track my Amazon Prime purchases and to the extent possible, see if I can price compare the items elsewhere. I'm hoping to see if it's worth the $79 by the end of the year.

I know, I know, I'll have gads more impulse buys so this isn't really frugal - comparing prices for stuff I probably never would have bought anyway if I weren't goofing off online. But it comes right to my door and it's so easy. So I'm doing it for a year and you're invited.

Amazon Prime $79

Larabar Carrot Cake bars, pack of 16 1.6-oz bars for $11.50 with online coupon = 72 cents per bar
Best other price I could find was $23.34 with shipping
Saved $11.84


Barbra Annino's Tiger's Eye on Kindle for free through the lending library (one free Kindle book a month when you subscribe to Prime). Technically I saved the $4.99 it would have cost me to buy the Kindle book but this is a new author for me. Usually I wouldn't have bought, I would have check it out from my library. But I enjoy the convenience, so I'll give this purchase a randomly assigned value of $0.99.
Saved $0.99


Cottonelle double roll 32 count with coupon and the 5% subscribe & save discount for $15.92, which equals $0.498 per roll. This beats my best price at Kroger with a coupon by .001 per roll for a grand savings of about 3 cents plus the convenience of delivery. I'll check the price to see if I need to cancel the subscription going forward.


Cottonelle double roll 48 count with coupon for $20.94, which equals $0.436 per roll, beating my Kroger best price by .063 per roll for a savings of about $3.02 plus we are going to be swimming in toilet paper for the new year = dream come true.


I recently finished reading "Eat to Live" and am anxious to try some of the "sweets" recipes, which all use medjool dates as the sweetener. They have some additional anti-cancer properties compared to other dates or something. Anywho, just got an Amazon giftcard from a friend for Christmas so I thought I'd give them a try. I might need to run to a health food store or the local Trader Joe's to compare the price on these, so more on that in the future.
Using Amazon Prime, I bought a 3 pack of 16oz. packages of Medjool dates for a grand total of 48 oz. for $26.22.

RUNNING TOTAL: I'll get back to you on that. 

5/6/13 - I'd have to say that for my shopping style, this hasn't been worth it. Got what I think were some good prices on toilet paper but it's so hard to comparison shop TP. Some brands roll the rolls loosely, others are thicker but leave way too much 'lint' behind (I know, I know TMI). I give up trying to comparison shop this.
Prime does seem to have good deals on bulk quantities of whole grains, such as millet and quinoa. And I also got a good price on semolina flour.

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