Thursday, July 15, 2010

College student at home? Amazon Prime free for 1 yr for students

The Amazon Prime program's special offer for college students has been in the news for over a week and I felt it was a good way for Amazon to get college students to spend more money shopping at Amazon for their school and other needs :-)

And of course it is, since anyone with free 2-day shipping at an online store will favor that store for purchases.  A Win-Win, when you know that Prime usually costs the customer $79 a year ($6.58 per month).  At that normal rate, customers will buy more just to justify spending that much for shipping each month (when free supersaver shipping is often available for the ever patient), unless they already easily spend more than that as frequent purchasers who don't like to wait several ground-delivery days for UPS or USPS.

  As most Amazon shoppers know, especially those who feel they can't or won't afford it, Amazon Prime is the special shipping-feature plan that offers free 2-day shipping on most Amazon products or one-day shipping at a much lower rate than usual ($3.99). You are able to include 4 members of your household for that $79/yr as well.

  3rd party seller products often don't qualify for this program but I've been surprised lately to see some larger or more popular third-party stores participate in the Prime program.

Basically the Student Prime features for the free annual-rate offering, are:
Amazon Prime free for one year ($79 value)
  . Unlimited FREE Two-Day Shipping on textbooks and millions of other items
  . No minimum order size
  . Upgrades to One-Day shipping for $3.99/item
E-mail alerts for exclusive deals and promotions
It's free for students - sign up by providing your school and major

The Email alerts are not optional.  The student can say No to that but then they're not eligible for this free version of the program.  Fair enough, I'd say.

To qualify for this, the student must have a mailing address ending in ".edu" and provide a Major when signing up - the wording also says you should be "enrolled" in at least one course at the college.
  The terms agreed to include that further eligibility information may be requested.

College students can of course be current Amazon customers and they just provide the '.edu' email address and identify a Major to become eligible.  The .edu address is for the E-mail alerts for exclusive deals and promotions.

  Now, how Amazon 'sees' you as eligible for prime or not may depend on using that email address for purchases too, unless Amazon links your .edu address to your main email address for log-ins there.

 Here are two good bits of information from their Student FAQ:
' If you're already an Amazon Prime member, you can still sign up for Amazon Student if you are eligible.  After you sign up for Amazon Student, we ll refund you the remaining months left on your current Amazon Prime subscription.

When you sign up for Amazon Student, you'll receive e-mail alerts for discounts and promotions.  If you don't want any more Amazon Student e-mails, you may cancel your Amazon Student membership.
 If you do this, your Amazon Prime benefits will also end when the membership is canceled '

  They have been refunding the remainder of the regular Prime term subscription fee upon confirmation of a student's .edu email address.

  Amazon states the exclusive discounts and promotions will also be made available on the Amazon Student membership page.

What's not entirely clear is whether a student Prime account gets the normal benefit of including four other members of a household in that plan.  The Student FAQ page doesn't exclude this benefit.  All I've found so far is "We sometimes offer certain customers various trial or other promotional memberships, which are subject to these Terms except as otherwise stated in the promotional offers."  That's from the regular Amazon Prime Terms.

The Student Prime Sign-up page does, however, say that students will get the Amazon Prime package as described at their regular Amazon Prime FAQ page, which is directly linked as the package they're offering college students for free (currently).

To make sure you get the Amazon confirmation/certification mail, follow their advice here:
"To prevent's e-mail from going to your spam or junk folder, add to your contacts or safe list."

Reference Pages:
Student Prime signup
Student Prime FAQ
Amazon Student page
Regular Amazon Prime FAQ
Regular Amazon Prime Terms & Conditions
Prime household-sharing instructions.

(For non-college students who might be interested in regular Prime, Amazon states: If you haven't been an Amazon Prime member in the last 13 months, you can sign up for a free trial.

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  1. Andrys -

    I hope you don't mind a comment/queston to one of your tweets here (didn't know where else to put it) -

    About this tweet -

    Amazingly balanced comparison, in a nutshell, of Nook, Kindle, iPad for different needs/likes by @BenLeeNY

    What did the author mean by
    "Connection 3G+Wifi Wifi"
    in his comparison of the connection capability for the Kindle with the Nook?

    I'm not aware of Wifi on the Kindle.
    Am I missing something major?

    Thank you,
    Edwina O'Toole

  2. Edwina,
    He was correct re the Nook's $149 for just WiFi but not correct in adding the 'WiFi" for the Kindle 2 since it doesn't have that.

    Let him know, if you can.

    You missed nothing. Thanks for the info. I don't know Ben but he did a good job on the summary, where balanced and nutshell-descriptions are concerned, so I passed it on.

    But that's something he should change. Later, when I get a chance I can write him also.

  3. Andrys -
    I didn't see a comment option on his website. I also didn't notice an email address, so I don't know how to tell him.

  4. EO,
    After I replied to you I went to his review, and at the bottom there was a Contact form so I did write him and quoted your report.

    Thanks again.


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