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Amazon’s not shy when it comes to marketing volleys, and it may have just thrown out its biggest yet.

This holiday season, the online shopping giant is offering free shipping to everyone – not just Prime customers – and without a required minimum purchase.

Starting Monday, Amazon’s free shipping deal promises delivery “in time for the Christmas holiday,” according to a company press release.

There doesn’t seem to be any restrictions on what’s available, either. Everything Amazon sells is part of the deal, “including items from Amazon’s expertly curated Gift Guides across electronics, fashion, home, and toys,” said Doug Herrington, Amazon’s Senior VP of North American Retail.

Buyer beware?

There’s no question that Amazon hopes to raise holiday sales as well as “Prime” its own pump, but ConsumerAffairs can’t find any concerns in Amazon’s deal short of the caveat of its “in time for Christmas” delivery promise.

ConsumerAffairs reached out to Amazon to get clarification on just how long a customer should expect to wait. A company spokesperson responded by saying that “items ordered with Free Shipping will be delivered in 5-8 business days.”

For those consumers who need things by a certain time, there’s always Prime, which Amazon holds as a carrot guaranteeing two-day delivery as well as free same-day delivery on certain items, not to mention delivery or pickup from the company’s 60 Whole Foods markets in as little as an hour (30 minutes in select cities).

Amazon is likely to use all available delivery resources – from independent handlers to UPS, FedEx, and USPS – to make good on its word. But the company has to be smart about associated costs and might bundle the shipping of smaller items to save itself some money.


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