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14 Must-Know Amazon Prime Perks You're Probably Not Using

Free shipping is great, but that's only a fraction of the Amazon Prime perks.

Peter Butler Senior Editor
Peter is a writer and editor for the CNET How-To team. He has been covering technology, software, finance, sports and video games since working for @Home Network and Excite in the 1990s. Peter managed reviews and listings for Download.com during the 2000s, and is passionate about software and no-nonsense advice for creators, consumers and investors.
Expertise 18 years of editorial experience with a current focus on personal finance and moving
Peter Butler
7 min read
Amazon prime member deal sign on a grocery shelf

Amazon acquired Whole Foods in 2017 and now gives discounts on groceries to Amazon Prime members.

Amazon/Whole Foods

Amazon Prime's free 2-day shipping is the show stealer for the $139/year subscription service, which will come in handy for its Memorial Day Sale, but it comes with a host of additional perks that you may not even realize you have access to. For instance, did you know that you can get GrubHub+ for free?

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The price for Prime has steadily increased over the years, but so have the perks associated with it, and if you take advantage of all (or most) of the perks, it's a fairly easy cost to justify. Below, we're going to break down some of the Amazon Prime perks you might not know about. 

For more, check out how to sign up for Prime for free for the Memorial Day sale and how to return Amazon Products for free

1. Watch HBO or other premium TV channels without cable

You probably know about Prime Video and Amazon Music Prime, but you might not know all the special details. Amazon Prime members have access to a large number of feature-length movies and hit original TV shows like The Boys and The Lord of the Rings: Rings of Power, as well as an Amazon Music Prime library featuring 2 million songs and thousands of curated playlists. 

Prime members can also download movies and TV shows for watching later offline.

And if a show or movie you want to watch is not included as part of your basic Prime subscription, you can subscribe to premium channels such as HBO, Showtime and Starz for $5 to $15 a month, with no need for cable or satellite service.

Music lovers can upgrade to Amazon Music Unlimited to get a library of 90 million songs that can be streamed to multiple devices for $9 a month or $89 a year.

Use These Tips to Shop Smarter at Amazon for Memorial Day Deals

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2. Get money back by choosing no-rush shipping

If you don't need your purchase to be delivered quickly, you can opt out of two-day or shorter delivery options by selecting "no-rush shipping" and receive your package in about six days. In return for your patience, Amazon will give you rewards.

There's no standard for no-rush shipping rewards -- they vary from item to item -- but they generally provide discounts on products and services that you might buy from Amazon.

Some common rewards are $1 credits for Amazon digital services like movies, music and ebooks, $3 coupons for Amazon's Happy Belly-branded snacks, $10 to $20 off TV or furniture purchases, and $10 to $20 off Amazon Home Services.

The value of no-rush shipping will depend on whether you'll use any of the rewards. It might not seem like much, but a few no-rush shipping selections could easily earn you the $3 to $4 you need for a free movie rental from Prime Video.

3. Whole Foods grocery discounts

If you're a frequent shopper at Whole Foods, an Amazon Prime membership can reap serious dividends. Prime Member Deals available in physical Whole Foods stores give members discounts of 10% to 20% on selected items marked with blue Amazon stickers. 

Yellow tags indicate even further savings, usually at least another 10% off an already discounted price. Prime members who scan the Whole Foods Market or Amazon app at check out get an extra 10% off storewide sales. Prime membership also gives you access to special online deals.

4. Exclusive access to Thursday night NFL football games

Thursday Night Football on Prime Video

Prime Video launched its NFL coverage in 2017.

Amazon

It's the second year running that Amazon Prime has had exclusive rights to air Thursday Night Football, and Prime seems to be killing the game. It received five Sports Emmys nominations for its 2022 coverage and boasts a stacked cast of experts, commentators and former players. 

If you are a Prime subscriber, you can stream 2023-2024 Thursday Night Football games on Prime Video, NFL +, Amazon.com, or Twitch. There is also a Spanish-Language broadcast available on Prime Video. TNF pregame coverage begins at 7 p.m. EST each Thursday.  

5. Free same-day Amazon Fresh delivery

Whole Foods isn't the only grocery option available to Amazon Prime members. Subscribers also have access to the online grocery store Amazon Fresh that provides free deliveries to some locations. Amazon Fresh has some similar products as Whole Foods but generally focuses on a broader range of groceries and home products at lower price points. 

Anyone can purchase products from Amazon Fresh, but only Prime members get free same-day delivery. Amazon Fresh also has 44 physical locations that offer special weekly deals for Prime members.

6. Try on clothes and shoes before you buy them

It's almost impossible to size clothing correctly online -- to know if it fits, you have to try it on. Prime members get that chance with Amazon's Try Before You Buy service. In specific personal shopping categories like clothes, shoes and accessories, you can order items and keep them for seven days without paying for them.

Return what you don't want before the trial week is over, and you'll only pay for the items that you keep. Eligible products are indicated on Amazon with a "Try Before You Buy" icon. Several online reports have indicated a limit of six products for Try Before You Buy, but the Amazon site doesn't specify a maximum.

7. Borrow unlimited books, magazines and comics

Amazon Prime members gain access to Prime Reading, a service similar to Kindle Unlimited with a different collection of materials. You can borrow as many books as you like, and many include audible narration, so you can switch back and forth between reading and listening. The electronic downloads don't require a Kindle or Fire device.

Amazon First Reads gives Prime members access to editors' selections of early book releases. Anyone with a Prime membership gets one free Kindle book a month, as well as regular discounts on selected titles.

8. Prime-exclusive deals and promos

Amazon offers Prime-exclusive deals all-year round on top products meaning you can make back the cost of your membership in savings. For big shopping seasons like Black Friday or Prime Day, there are event more member-only prices to shop. 

Plus, Prime subscribers often get early access to Lightning Deals. These are sort of like Amazon's version of a fire sale, featuring very low prices for a limited number of products that are usually sell out very quickly. The good news for Amazon Prime members is that they get access to these deals earlier than everyone else. The bad news? There are a lot of Amazon Prime members out there…

9. Exclusive Zappos deals, faster shipping and a test month for running shoes

Amazon acquired the online shoe giant Zappos back in 2009, and it now provides a number of benefits for Prime members who link their accounts on Zappos.com. Prime members get faster shipping, bonus reward points for shopping and exclusive deals on certain products. 

Zappos also lets Prime members participate in Runlimited, a 30-day guarantee program for running shoes.

10. Save money on prescription drugs online or at your local pharmacy

Amazon Prime Rx savings card

Prime membership provides a discount card for prescriptions at local pharmacies.

Amazon

Amazon Prime Rx savings program gives Prime members discounts on prescription medicine, whether it's purchased at Amazon Pharmacy or in-store at a physical pharmacy. An Amazon Rx savings card can be printed out or saved digitally and used for discounts at more than 60,000 participating pharmacies, including CVS, Walgreens and Rite Aid.

Amazon says that members can save up to 80% on common prescription drugs using Prime Rx, but it's important to note that Amazon's Prime Rx savings program does not work with health insurance. You'll need to be sure that any savings you get from the program are more than you'd get from insurance coverage.

For more about Amazon Prime, learn about what to expect from this year's back-to-school deals

11. Access to Prime Gaming

Prime gaming is a fun feature that is included with both Amazon Prime and Prime Video. Eligible subscribers are able to download content in-game for your favorite games, free games and even a free monthly Twitch channel subscription. 

Prime Gaming is included with annual and monthly Prime subscriptions, Prime Student subscriptions, Amazon Prime free trials, and Prime Video memberships. It's important to note that only one member per household may claim an offer, and if you have a Prime Video monthly free trial you will be unable to claim a free Twitch subscription. If you are using a free-trial of Student Prime, your free Twitch membership will expire when your free trial expires. 

12. One Medical membership discounts

One Medical is a membership-based health service that provides primary in-person and virtual health care. Its concierge-like medical service is designed to allow members to easily schedule appointments and care using the company's mobile app or website.

Amazon acquired One Medical in February and is now offering a major discount for Prime members. Instead of the usual price of $199 a year, Amazon Prime members can subscribe for $99 a year, or $9 per month. To activate the discount, Prime members should visit https://health.amazon.com/prime. Existing One Medical subscribers who are Prime members can also take advantage of the discount starting with their next payment.

13. Unlimited photo storage with Amazon Photos

With a subscription to Amazon Prime, you can store unlimited photos and 5GB of video on Amazon Photos. Without Amazon Prime, you're limited to a total of 5GB of videos and photos total. 

You can view or share your photos and videos on Amazon Photos using the iOS or Android app, or on a computer with the desktop or web app. Your photo and video files are both fully encrypted, so they're only visible to people with whom you intentionally share them.

14. Get a year of Grubhub+ for free

Don't feel like cooking tonight? There's a perk for that, too. Prime members in the US can nab a year of Grubhub+ for free, which would typically run your $9.99 a month. This will give you unlimited free delivery for all orders over $12 in over 4,000 cities nationwide. 

Keep an eye on the date you activate this perk, as it'll begin to charge you once your free year is up. 

For more, check out the Prime perks you should be using this Memorial Day and how to find hidden deals on Amazon before Memorial Day.