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10/29/2013

Your Amazon Subscribe & Save strategy: how to max out your savings


Subscribing to  Amazon Subscribe & Save deals is a fantastic way to save money. It's almost risk-free, even if you are doing it just to get the discount and don't want to keep the subscription.
  1. The basic way it works is this:  you get a 5% discount on an order when you select the Subscribe & Save option.

  2. If you get five or more orders delivered in a single month, your discount triples from 5% to 15%. 

  3. Each month, your discount re-sets to 5%; you need to have five orders delivered in each month to get that 15% discount for that month.

  4. One exception to the rule is that Amazon Family (formerly Amazon Mom) members get 20% off all of their diaper subscriptions (and don't need to have five or more orders delivered in a single month to get it).

  5. You can (and you should) stack Amazon coupons with Subscribe & Save deals to maximize your savings.  If the coupon is a percentage off, that percentage comes off the original "pre-discount gross" price, not the discounted Subscribe & Save price (saving you even more money).  So that means if you have a coupon for 35% off (for example), you can add it to the 15% off discount and you'll save a total of 50% off (35% + 15% = 50%) the original price.

  6. A great way to use the five-order advantage is to order the things that you need (paper towels, toilet paper, detergent, cleansers, certain food items, etc.) and then if you need more orders delivered to get to that five order-minimum, order items that you can use that are under $5.00.  (I'll write posts as often as they come up with some suggestions for very low-priced Subscribe & Save orders).

  7. How does ordering extra Subscribe & Save items actually save you money?  Though it might seem to be counter-intuitive, if the item(s) is/are priced low enough, the math will work out.  For example, if you find yourself ordering four Subscribe & Save items that total $100.00, then adding an additional Subscribe & Save item will save you 10% more, or $10.00. So adding another Subscribe & Save order that costs less than $10.00 will actually reduce your final bill.  That's why I post a listing of Subscribe & Save offers that are under $5.00.

  8. You can UNsubscribe to Subscribe & Save very easily, by going to your account as soon as your order has shipped.  If you're ordering through Subscribe & Save just to get the discount, make sure you unsubscribe as soon as possible.

  9. Even if (worse case scenario) you completely forget to unsubscribe, Amazon will not send out an additional order without shooting you a warning email first, giving you enough time to unsubscribe and cancel any additional orders in time. 

  10. Set your Subscribe & Save frequency to "every 6 months."  This will give you the most time to cancel your subscription.

  11. If you are super-nervous about forgetting to cancel your subscription as soon as the order ships. you can always set a Google calendar reminder.

  12. You can select your own delivery date for Subscribe & Save (and change it as often as you want).  Set your Subscribe & Save delivery date very close to the end of the month. If you set it to the 30th, as I've done, you will have until the 21st to make all decisions and changes to your Subscribe & Save orders.

  13. You can stock up order multiples of any Subscribe & Save item (and your Subscribe & Save discount will apply to any quantity that you order).  Here's how:  first, select the One-Time Purchase option, and then the quantity drop-down should appear.  Select the quantity that you would like, and then re-select the Subscribe & Save option.  When you continue to check out, Amazon will have applied the quantity that you chose to your Subscribe & Save order. 

  14. Sometimes Amazon Add-On items are also Subscribe & Save items.  If you purchase them through the Subscribe & Save program, you don't need to worry about any Add-On shipping restrictions...you can ignore them if you decide to buy it through Subscribe & Save.

  15. Be aware that you don't need an Amazon Prime account in order to use Amazon Subscribe & Save.  You get free shipping on every Subscribe & Save order, even without a Prime account.

  16. Read more about Amazon's Subscribe & Save program here.

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