What’s better than getting unlimited access to Amazon Prime video, free shipping, free release-date delivery on new video games and music, free online photo storage and free trials of Amazon Prime channels like HBO and Showtime? Getting those perks on Amazon Prime Day 2018, scheduled for July 16. This year’s much-anticipated shopping day is 36 hours long, starting at noon Pacific Time on July 16 and running through July 17. This is six hours more than 2017’s Prime Day.
Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) calls this year’s fourth annual event “bigger than ever” with more than 1 million deals around the world and 50 percent more Spotlight Deals. This year’s event will also feature double the deals on Amazon-devices including Echo, Fire TV and Fire tablets. The only catch is that you must be an Amazon Prime member to take advantage of the fantastic deals. Not a member yet? You can sign up for a free 30-day free trial. After the trial, a standard, one-person membership is $119 per year. There are currently more than 100 million Prime members globally.
“Prime members will enjoy a day (and a half) of our best deals, with 36 hours to shop more than one million deals worldwide,” said Jeff Wilke, Amazon CEO Worldwide Consumer, in a statement. “New this year, members can shop exclusive Prime Day Launches from hundreds of brands worldwide, enjoy exclusive savings at Whole Foods Market and experience surprise entertainment events unboxed from giant Smile boxes in major cities. More than 100 million paid Prime members around the world will find our best Prime Day celebration yet.”
A new addition to Prime Day this year are unboxing events to be held in New York City, Los Angeles, London, Tokyo and Milan. Amazon isn’t saying much about the unboxing of giant Smile boxes, but curious people can watch them online.
Here are some additional highlights for this year’s Prime Day:
- The launch of the first Alexa-enabled kitchen faucet – Delta Trinsic Touch20 voice-activated faucet
- Coleman RoadTrip LXE portable propane grill
- Audible Original production, Hi, Bob!, featuring Bob Newhart interviewing guests to include Sarah Silverman, Jimmy Kimmel and Conan O’Brien
- The launch of the Moto G6 64 GB, an exclusive version of an unlocked Android smartphone with a 5.7″ Full HD+ Max Vision display with 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB of internal storage
This will be the first year that Amazon includes Whole Foods Market in Prime Day. Shoppers will get an additional 10 percent off hundreds of sale items and discounts on select products. Also, from July 14 through 17, Amazon Prime Rewards Visa cardmembers will get double rewards – 10 percent back – when they shop at Whole Foods, up to a $400 maximum purchase.
On Tuesday, Amazon kicked off Prime Day with deals that are effective immediately:
- $100 off Echo Show
- Lowest prices on Amazon brands
- Up to 50 percent off on popular movies and TV shows on digital, DVD and Blu-Ray
- Four months of Amazon Music Unlimited for just $0.99
- Hundreds of hours of free gameplay on Twitch Prime and exclusive, in-game loot for Warframe and PLAYERUNKKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS
- First three months of Audible for $4.95 a month
Last summer’s Prime Day was the company’s biggest sales day in company history, beating out previous sales records from Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Amazon said tens of millions of Prime members – 50 percent more than in 2016 – took advantage of the day’s deals. The most popular deal last year was the Echo Dot.
Amazon Prime is the gold standard for membership programs. While its price increased slightly this year, the benefits members get for $119 a year are well worth it. For users who shop online a lot or who watch Amazon Prime Video, the service more than pays itself. Prime Day is a great way to thank members and to give them exclusive deals. This attracts new members to the core program, and with introductory pricing, members may be willing to try other subscription offerings including Amazon Music Unlimited and Audible. With Prime Day, everyone is a winner.