This Is Awesome: Amazon Announces a 45% Prime Discount for Lower-Income Shoppers

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Sure, it’s a bid to enlarge Amazon’s customer pool, but every little bit of corporate kindness that can ease the strain on people’s lives in America is welcome these days.

Amazon’s 45% discount on its popular Prime membership—$5.99 a month instead of $10.99—is available to U.S. residents who are receiving government assistance via an EBT (Electronic Transfer Benefits) card. Holders of EBT cards can apply here for the discount, though they’ll have to re-qualify each year, for up to four years, according to Recode. It’s unclear whether they’d still be eligible after the four-year period.

The Recode story points out that this is an obvious instance of Amazon gunning for more of Walmart’s demographic, as the two supplier giants engage in escalating price battles. Well, good. Amazon Prime is a great service that allows for free shipping on tons of items unavailable elsewhere, not to mention host to many TV shows and movies that come with Prime, and other perks, like access to The Washington Post free for several months.

It’s a grocery store/mall/bookstore/newsstand/Netflix alternative all bound up together, and it should be made available to as many people as possible regardless of their monthly income status. Most importantly, many will now be able to skip the physical shopping trip for essentials that can be shipped through Prime, and use that time otherwise.

Memberships to time-and-money saving services like Prime shouldn’t be an expensive, exclusive club. Considering Prime has been around since 2005, this is a long time coming, but it’s a step in the right direction that other corporations would be wise to consider.

(via Recode, image: Shutterstock)

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Author
Kaila Hale-Stern
Kaila Hale-Stern (she/her) is a content director, editor, and writer who has been working in digital media for more than fifteen years. She started at TMS in 2016. She loves to write about TV—especially science fiction, fantasy, and mystery shows—and movies, with an emphasis on Marvel. Talk to her about fandom, queer representation, and Captain Kirk. Kaila has written for io9, Gizmodo, New York Magazine, The Awl, Wired, Cosmopolitan, and once published a Harlequin novel you'll never find.