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Amazon Prime Day 2022: Prime Early Access Sale Deals, Details and More

Oct. 11 kicks off the second Prime Day event, which Amazon is calling the Prime Early Access Sale. Here's what you need to know.

Amazon Prime boxes stacked and being picked up
Amazon

This story is part of Amazon Prime Day, CNET's guide to everything you need to know and how to find the best deals.

Following months of rumors, Amazon has finally made its Prime Early Access Sale official, which will be a second Prime Day-style sales event. Taking place in just a couple of weeks, the new fall sale is designed to give shoppers the opportunity to score some of the season's best Amazon deals before the mad rush around Black Friday begins. 

Amazon has promised a 48-hour deal bonanza offering Prime-exclusive savings and "hundreds of thousands" of deals to shop. Though dubbed the Prime Early Access Sale, the 48-hour event is, for all intents and purposes, a second Prime Day for 2022. It will mark the first time Amazon has held two such sales in one calendar year, though it arrives against a backdrop of struggling economies globally and squeezed personal finances for many.

Let's break down everything we know about the Prime Early Access Sale and previous Amazon Prime Day events.

Best Prime Early Access Sale deals

Unlike during Prime Day, Amazon did not tease any Prime Early Access Sale deals for us to get excited about. Since the official announcement, Amazon has released a bunch of new deals on its own hardware and some other goodies. The company is rounding them all up here, and below we've highlighted some of our favorites that you can buy right now.

The event officially kicks off on Oct. 11, but there are some deals worth checking out right now. Get a head start by clicking below.

Will there be a second Amazon Prime Day event this year?

In September, Amazon confirmed it is holding a second Prime Day-like event in 2022 in the form of the Prime Early Access Sale. Though it is going by a different name, it is structured exactly like the Prime Day sales we've encountered before with hundreds of thousands of Prime-exclusive deals made available across a 48-hour period. 

Given the success of Prime Day each year, we've seen regular rumors that Amazon could move to a twice-a-year format in order to juice sales in the summer and the fall. Therefore, it's not surprising to see Amazon try to get out ahead of the competition before the Black Friday sales kick off in November.

When is Amazon's Prime Early Access Sale?

Amazon's Prime Early Access Sale will take place on Oct. 11 and 12. Like previous Prime Day events, the sale will run for the full 48 hours, kicking off at midnight Pacific on Oct. 11. 

Historically, Amazon has held its Prime Day sales each July with just a couple of deviations from that regular schedule. Notably, in 2020, Amazon pushed its Prime Day sale to October due to the COVID-19 pandemic before returning it to the summer in 2021 in a slightly earlier June spot. Prime Day moved back to July in 2022, though Amazon is utilizing that October slot once again for its Prime Early Access Sale.

As a reference, here are the Prime Day dates from previous years:

  • Prime Day 2015: July 15
  • Prime Day 2016: July 12
  • Prime Day 2017: July 11 to 12 (first to last longer than one day)
  • Prime Day 2018: July 16 to 17
  • Prime Day 2019: July 15 to 16
  • Prime Day 2020: Oct. 13 to 14 (delayed by COVID-19 pandemic)
  • Prime Day 2021: June 21 to 22 (the earliest to date)
  • Prime Day 2022: July 12 to 13
  • Prime Early Access Sale 2022: Oct. 11 to 12

As you can see, an Amazon shopping event in October is not unprecedented but two Prime Day-like sales in one year is. Amazon likely gathered some valuable insight into the effectiveness of a fall placement during the delayed 2020 Prime Day event and will be hoping it can again get the jump on Black Friday sales which tend to kick off in mid-November these days. 

How long will the Prime Early Access Sale last?

Similar to Prime Day 2022, October's Prime Early Access Sale will run for 48 hours, kicking off at midnight Pacific on October 11. Many deals will launch at that time and last throughout the event, supplies permitting, with other, more limited-time Lightning deals expected to be launching and expiring during the two-day event. 

Prime Early Access Sale vs. Black Friday: What about the deals?

With the two events happening so close together this year, odds are you'll be a little nervous about buying something in October that usually goes on sale for Black Friday in November. Though it wasn't included in the official announcement, we anticipate that Amazon will likely offer some type of "pricing guarantee" or similar that gives consumers peace of mind that the prices they are buying items for now are the same that they'll find during Black Friday sales.

Amazon just released a "Toys We Love" list, which highlights some of the year's bestsellers ahead of the upcoming holidays. Some of them have "preorder price guarantees" already, so it wouldn't be out of line to think Amazon will do the same for its event next month.

What countries can participate in the Prime Early Access Sale?

Now that the Prime Early Access Sale is official, we know which countries will be able to participate. The event will run in 15 countries:

  • Austria
  • Canada
  • China
  • France
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • Luxembourg
  • Netherlands
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Turkey
  • United Kingdom
  • United States

That's a noticeably smaller list than previous Prime Day events with countries like Australia, Brazil, Japan, Mexico and India missing out.

How does Prime Day work?

The idea behind Prime Day (and, by extension, the Prime Early Access Sale) is a simple one: Subscribers to Amazon's Prime service can get exclusive discounts on thousands of products and services across the site during a limited period of time. The products, while still available to non-Prime members, will have extra savings for members, dropping many of their prices down to new all-time lows. 

When you're logged in to your Prime account and looking at a product landing page, you'll see the discounted price if it's on sale. You don't need any special coupon codes, nor is there a need to use a specific payment method in order to get the discounts.

Do you need to be a Prime Member to shop the Prime Early Access Sale?

Just like Prime Day, the Prime Early Access Sale will require a Prime subscription if you want to nab Prime-exclusive deals. You don't have to be a paying subscriber, though, as long as your Prime trial period overlaps the event's Oct. 11 to Oct. 12 timeframe meaning now is a great time to start your month-long trial.

Amazon earlier this year raised prices on Prime membership. It's now $15 a month ($139 a year).

Will other retailers participate in the Prime Early Access Sale?

Each year, we see retailers like eBay, Best Buy and Walmart kick off July sales in order to try and compete with Amazon Prime Day and 2022 was no different. Given the Prime Early Access Sale's proximity to Black Friday sales, it's possible that we'll see several weeks of sales ahead of the traditional Black Friday weekend as was the case back in 2020 when Amazon moved its Prime Day sale to October due to the pandemic. 

Target has already announced its own Target Deal Days event for October that takes place ahead of the Prime Early Access Sale and we wouldn't be surprised to see more retailers follow suit. 

Why did Prime Day start?

Amazon has been hosting its annual Prime Day sale since 2015. Originally, it was a 24-hour sales event to celebrate Amazon's 20th birthday. The "Prime" in the name refers to Amazon's subscription service, which offers free delivery on many products in as little as one to two days, and which has now expanded to encompass the Netflix-style Prime Video service and various other Amazon-related perks

Prime Day soon became a version of "Black Friday in July" for Amazon, allowing the retailer to have a branded 48-hour shopping extravaganza in an otherwise sleepy retail season. Unlike Black Friday, however, the Prime Day branding lets Amazon differentiate its summer sale from competitors while selling Prime memberships and Amazon-branded hardware such as Echo speakers and Fire tablets, which encourage customers to stay in the Amazon ecosystem. The fact that the sale also allows Amazon and its partners to clear out inventory and warehouse space ahead of the holiday shopping season doesn't hurt, either.

Best Amazon Prime Day 2022 deals

Though Prime Day 2022 is over and its best deals have long since expired, we can use it to gain some insight into the sort of deals we might see during Amazon's Prime Early Access Sale in October. Below are a few of our top picks from Prime Day 2022. 

Where can you find deals right now?

The CNET Deals team covers all of the best price drops, discounts and deals daily from all the top retailers. Whether it's a one-day sale at Woot, a weeklong offer at Best Buy or a coupon code for a product at Amazon, if it's a great deal, we'll be covering it. Be sure to check out all of the great deals each day at CNET.com/deals and sign up for our CNET Deals newsletter for a daily digest of deals delivered to your inbox.

You can also check out our new CNET Shopping browser extension. This will help ensure that every purchase you make for the rest of the year will be at the lowest price available.


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