Do I Really Need Amazon Prime?

Posted on Jan 28, 2023
tl;dr: Amazon Prime and Prime Student emailed a renewal notice and discontinuation notice of my student membership discount. I reacted with great disappointment to losing the discount and membership fee increase. I clarified why I have an Amazon Prime membership, listed the membership’s usefulness, and re-evaluated my decision to either renew or cancel my membership.

The Amazon Prime Membership email
The Prime Student email
What’s the next step
Decide priorities
Why do I have an Amazon Prime Membership
When I don’t use Amazon Prime
15 reasons an Amazon Prime membership is worthwhile
Helpful Links

AP or not

My above illustration is based on a photo reference I found on Pinterest from Haze Aesthetic.


I’ll lose my Prime Student membership discount a little over a month from now, and I’m taking this loss very personally. My shoulders are drooping, and my mouth is an upside-down letter U.

Losing one more year of saving dollars on an Amazon Prime membership is depressing and screws up my frugal goals. I’ve gotten used to paying my discounted membership. I don’t want to spend my time looking for other Amazon Prime-like coverage. My attitude comes from my grandparents and parents, who have indoctrinated me into not spending more dollars than I must, even if I can afford it.


The Amazon Prime Membership email

Last week, I got an email from Amazon Prime. The email’s title displayed my first and last name, followed by the words “Your Amazon Prime Membership.” I felt uneasy and was reluctant to continue reading, but I clicked the email title.

Amazon Prime’s blue banner header stretched from the outer edge of the email page’s left margin to the right margin. The tagline on the banner said in large sans serif font, “What you want, when you need it amazonPrime.”

The email’s salutation had my first and last name. My intuition activated its lights and pulled me to the side. I inhaled deeply to brace my mind better.

The email asked the first question: “has it been a year already?”

I at once became annoyed, and I reread the question. What kind of question was that? Was I oblivious that I was living under a pile of rubble and didn’t know 2022 had passed? Or did I arrive on Earth from Uranus a moment ago?

“Has it been a year already?”
That’s the kind of question you ask when you’re pretending that you’re surprised that the other person was hibernating underground the entire year and who is just now waking up after you’ve been shining a bright flashlight on their face. 😲

Oh, no wonder a year’s passed without me knowing it. 😲
I’ve been watching movies and TV shows, listening to music, reading Kindle books, looking at my stored photos a hundred times a day, and enjoying the unlimited two-day free shipping from my online orders. 🙃

“Don’t let the next year pass you by. Start taking advantage of all that Amazon Prime has to offer today.”

What the hell! 🤬


The Prime Student email

Then I noticed the Prime Student email that followed.

This email was worse because its title gave me anxiety. It said, “We’ve had a great run, but your Prime Student membership discount must end.” My heart sank deeper. My already drooping shoulders drooped more.

I hated this email! The email’s salutation had the word thanks followed by my first and last name. Then the first sentence said, “Thanks for being a Prime Student member!”

That sentence added gasoline to my burning annoyance. How do I respond to that? Umm, you’re welcome? 😕

First, Amazon Prime tells me they’re ending my membership discount and then thanks me for being a Prime Student member. I’m confused. 😕

It’s like the Prime Student Membership Lord gave me the boot and told me, OKAY, we can’t afford to provide you with these Prime Student benefits for half the price anymore; it’s time you pay the full price like everyone else. 😡

Shit, Amazon Prime is ending my Prime Student movie breaks, and they’re thanking me? Great! There goes my enjoying Prime Video and Kindle and free two-day shipping at half the membership price. 😖

My student days aren’t over yet! I still have a semester to go! 😭

Then the next paragraph began with “Get the most out of everything Prime with the Prime Insider Newsletter…delivered weekly to your inbox.” No thanks. How is a newsletter supposed to help me keep my Prime Student membership? And I don’t need more emails. I need more savings!

Hope tapped my shoulder. I had to see if I could extend my student discount benefit. The steps below show how I did this.

  1. On the Your Account page, click on the Prime button to go to the Amazon Prime Membership page.
  2. Click on Prime Plan next to your name.
  3. Click the link, Still a Student? Reverify your eligibility. at the bottom of the mini menu.
  4. You’ll see a bordered message at the top of the page that says, “We’ve had a great run, but all good things must come to an end. Members are only allowed a maximum of 4 years of discounted Amazon Prime benefits. You can continue to receive FREE Two-Day shipping, access to thousands of movies, TV episodes, and 2 million songs, unlimited photo storage, and more with a full-priced Amazon Prime membership at $139/year plus taxes or $14.99/month plus taxes.”

After I read the message, my hope vanished. I became depressed.


What’s the next step

After knowing that my membership renewal fee would increase and my student discount would stop, I allowed myself two days of gorging on Doritos, dreaming my student discount would stay and googling questions about the necessity of an Amazon Prime membership. And I became depressed again that my gorging had to end because the family-size bag of spicy Doritos was so good!


Decide priorities

After two days, my depression faded. I became aware of the vehicles speeding on the nearby freeway, the earsplitting noise of a commercial leaf blower outside my window, and the thought of having to pay full price for an Amazon Prime membership was making me cringe again.

What do I want out of this? Having to pay $139 feels like I’m stealing from myself. My imagining of paying that fee was deepening my frown lines.

What I want out of this is to spend less and save more.

Do I need an Amazon Prime membership? Practically, the answer is a loud N-O!

Then I remembered my financial life’s mantra, which is a quote that says,

Rich people stay rich by living like they’re broke. Broke people stay broke by living like they’re rich.


Not having a Prime Student membership discount isn’t going to kill me. If anything, I would have to spend more to renew my membership.

But was I willing to throw out $139 per year or $14.99 per month?


Why do I have an Amazon Prime Membership

I habitually go to the Amazon Prime site to watch newer, classic, and nostalgic movies and free shows on Prime Video.
I eat lunch and dinner with my computer, and the first site I visit is Prime Video.

I shop on Amazon Prime when the product I need is unavailable at the physical store or if the product’s sale is better. I haven’t shopped online on Amazon Prime in the past three months. I placed only six orders in 2022. And these orders were a mix of necessities that had better sales prices than at the physical store, like a package of razors for women, shampoo and conditioner duos, package deals for body lotion or deodorant, and a school textbook.

For digital content, my purchases are rare, and in the last 12 months, I borrowed The Call of the Wild and Tarzan of the Apes and bought The Great Gatsby Kindle version for zero dollars.
I’ve never used the Music Library and Amazon Drive for document and photo storage.
I use Prime Gaming to get occasional free in-game content from videogame publishers whose video games I mostly play.

My Amazon Prime Membership mainly fulfills my entertainment needs through Prime Video while I eat during mealtimes and breaks from schoolwork and writing.

When I don’t use Amazon Prime

I only buy things when needed and don’t do frivolous shopping. So, I’ve never shopped on Prime Day. I don’t enjoy shopping for gifts unless it’s for me. I have a simple and uncluttered lifestyle, and I don’t need any more things right now. My mantra has always been Less is more because I believe in the concept of this mantra.

There are 15 Amazon Prime benefits I don’t or have never used:

  • Amazon Day,
  • Amazon Key,
  • Amazon Household,
  • Amazon Family,
  • Buy With Prime,
  • Prime Now,
  • Amazon Fresh,
  • Amazon Pharmacy,
  • Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card,
  • Prime Photos,
  • Amazon Music,
  • Lightning Deals,
  • Prime Early Access Sale,
  • Amazon Prime Day,
  • Free same-day delivery.


15 reasons an Amazon Prime membership is worthwhile

If you’re using ALL the Amazon Prime benefits and or you’ve budgeted for nonessential spending, then the annual $139 or monthly $14.99 fee might be completely and utterly worth it.

Amazon says that as of 2022, they have more than 200 million Amazon Prime users worldwide. Below are 15 reasons an Amazon Prime membership is worthwhile for those members.

  1. Helps save some time

    An Amazon Prime membership is worth it for people who are big on saving time:

    • Online orders arrive on the same day or in two days for free,
    • Members don’t have to wait in the pay line at physical retail locations,
    • Returning an unwanted order or bought product is convenient and easy.
  2. Medicaid and EBT card users

    Suppose you’re using a current Medicaid card or a Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) participant and use the Electronic Benefits Transfer system. You can be an Amazon Prime Member with no yearly plan for $6.99 monthly.

  3. Household membership

    Amazon Prime is worth it through Amazon Household for a family of a pair of parents (they approve purchases and set parental controls), four teenagers, and four children to save dollars and enjoy membership benefits free, like buying ten containers of tasty ice cream for the price of one. 🍨😋

  4. Students

    The four-year Prime Student discount benefit is worth it for college students using a dot e-d-u email address at American colleges and universities.

  5. Shopaholics

    If you shop online a lot and shipping fees and wait times make you want to quit online shopping, and you’re the I-want-my-purchased-items-now type, then Amazon Prime’s free same-day and two-day delivery will extend your tendency and wet your impatience.

  6. Online grocery shopping

    Suppose you live in a populous city in the continental US or one of the international cities like Tokyo, Rome, London, or Berlin, and you have a reason or excuse not to go to a physical grocery store to buy your food and beverages. In that case, Amazon Fresh and or Whole Foods Market will deliver and or complete a grocery pickup.

  7. Binge watchers and digital audiophiles

    Suppose you’re a professional binge-watcher and or a digital audiophile. Free Prime Video and Prime Music benefits will help to permanently fasten your eyes to the monitor screen and vibrate your ear drums.

  8. Gamers

    If you get an adrenaline rush watching entertaining professional video gamers spray bullets or sword-hack enemies like you do when you watch professional NFL or NBA, or NHL athletes gleefully injure themselves for fun and win, you can watch and emote with your favorite Twitch streamer with Prime Gaming for free without ads. And you get to redeem free rewards from videogame publishers and monthly free games from popular genres like Anime, Action, and Adventure.

  9. Photo hoarders

    If your addiction is digital photo hoarding and the words unlimited, full resolution, and share make your thumb want to put on tap dance shoes, then free online photo storage with Amazon Photos is for you.

  10. Yearly shopaholics

    If you like yearly 48-hour online shopping sprees and getting discounts, then Prime Day is your day.

  11. Dressing room users

    Trying out a cute floral dress or comfy-looking low-rise straight-leg jeans in a clothing store’s dressing room is the first step to confirming that you need the item before you slide your credit card into the scanner.

    But online clothes shopping doesn’t let you try on that cute dress or comfy jeans. Amazon Prime has you covered with the Prime Try Before You Buy benefit.

  12. Medical prescriptions

    If you need fast refills for your maintenance medication, you can buy select medicine online without insurance and save up to 80% with free two-day shipping with Amazon Prime Rx.

  13. Bookworms

    If you’re a digital bookworm, magazine lover, comic geek, or all three, you’re in for many great reads with the free Prime Reading and Amazon First Reads program.

  14. Your children

    For children who do a lot of web surfing and can surely shop online but with their parent’s permission, there’s Amazon Kids Plus for movies, books, and software, and there’s Amazon Book Box for monthly orders of curated books.

  15. Plastic cashback and rewards

    You’ll find the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Card helpful if you love saving while credit-card-spending, getting cashback, and receiving a small dollar percentage back from your favorite eating place, gas station, and other items.



This has been a lengthy, drawn-out personal inquiry on whether I need an Amazon Prime membership. I’ve already gotten over the loss of my student discount. Yes, the discount was beneficial while it lasted. Meantime I’m enjoying its remaining days.

Now that I’ve completed this personally written inquiry, I see what I want and what I’m willing to give up for my entertainment and frugal goals. I can decide with ease.

It’s a simple and practical decision to make. If I renew, I spend $139 per year or $14.99 per month. If I don’t continue my membership, my dollars stay where they are, and doors open to other cost-saving platforms for movies and books. Importantly, I’ll rest not spending extra dollars on nonessential spending.


Pros and Cons of Amazon Prime

What Is Amazon Prime? The Benefits, the Cost, and Whether It’s Worth It

15 reasons why an Amazon Prime membership is worth the $139 annual fee

Should I Cancel Amazon Prime? Here Are 12 Good Reasons

Is Amazon Prime Worth It?


Thank you for reading!

Please share this article with your family, friends, and anyone deciding whether they want to continue their Amazon Prime membership.

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