It’s been about a year and a half since Amazon upped the price of Prime, hiking the subscription from $119 to $139. But many of its tech and retail peers have upped their prices this year and the question remains if Amazon will follow suit.
Chief among those is Walmart, which rolled out its Walmart Plus subscription for $98 and sweetened the deal with free grocery delivery on orders over $35. The Blue Vest’ers didn’t stop there, either. Last year, Paramount + was added to the company's subscription service and now competes with Amazon's own Prime Video streaming service.
For Amazon to raise the price of Prime, it would have to add something substantial that favors its customers. Earlier this week, there was some jawing about Prime offering a mobile phone service as part of its package, but most of the players – Amazon, AT&T, T-Mobile, et al – dismissed the idea completely.
The Fool says the chances of a Prime membership going up are slim. “The good news is that while the cost of Amazon Prime might go up eventually, it's unlikely to increase in 2023. That doesn't mean you shouldn't consider canceling your Amazon Prime membership, though,” The Fool’s Maurey Backman wrote.
Is Prime worth what you’re paying for it?
Backman suggests that even though the cost of Amazon Prime might not increase anytime soon, now may be a good time to think about how much you’re getting out of your membership.
One good point she brings up is that we’re doing a lot less ordering online than we did during the pandemic, simply because we feel safer going to stores and we can get things there instead of having them delivered.
“After all, what's the point of paying for free two-day shipping when you're only ordering one item a month?” she asked. “Also, one huge side benefit of Amazon Prime is the access you get to free streaming content. But if you're already paying for a bunch of other streaming services, then this may be a benefit you're not really utilizing.”
But should you cancel Prime completely? Backman contends that there are a lot of things a consumer can do with all the money they spend on Prime – like boosting their savings account balance. “And if you have an outstanding credit card balance, canceling Prime could free up some cash to chip away at it,” she said.
“Therefore, think about whether you're getting good use out of your Prime membership, and if not, pull the plug. You may be okay with the current $139 price point. But if it's not delivering value to you personally, then it's still a waste of your hard-earned money.”