How to Get Amazon Prime With American Express

by on January 21, 2014 · 30 comments

in Amazon, American Express

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Update: The Amazon Prime benefit is no longer offered for the Platinum Card, Blue Cash Everday, Blue Cash Preferred and Business Gold Rewards card and the Prime annual membership is now $99 instead of $79.

I’m not a huge Amazon shopper, but I have plenty of family and friends who are borderline addicted. Not only can you get great prices, shopping on Amazon can save you time and earn you more points than shopping in traditional stores (more on that in a minute). Amazon launched their Prime membership, which gives two day shipping for $79 a year, However American Express recently added a year of Amazon Prime membership as a sign-up bonus on the personal Platinum, Business Gold Rewards, Blue Cash and Blue Cash Preferred cards.

To be eligible, you must be a new cardmember and meet the minimum spending requirement listed on the application for your card’s sign-up bonus within the specified time period. One year of Amazon Prime usually costs $79, but when you purchase it with your eligible new card within the first three months, you will get a statement credit back for the amount.

Some of the eligible cards including the Blue Cash Everyday and Preferred are offering special sign-up bonuses that are higher than the public offers out there via the Card Match Tool, so if you are eligible for one, I’d suggest checking it first to see if you have any targeted offers there with higher sign-up bonuses. Though the site asks for the last four of your social security number, there is no credit check unless you actually apply for one of the cards.

What Exactly Does Amazon Prime Include?

Amazon Prime membership includes free 2-day shipping on purchases, instant streaming of thousands of movies and TV shows, and one Kindle book to borrow for free each month from the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library.

If you were to make two purchases a month through Amazon which would each normally get charged $5.99 in shipping and handling fees, you would be spending $143 on shipping alone each year – and keep in mind that shipping cost is for ground shipping. So you’re potentially saving hundreds of dollars the first year, and even past the free first year.

According to the FAQ page on Amazon Prime, all items on with Amazon Prime listed on their product page are eligible. Free 2-day shipping is available to nearly all addresses in the 48 continental United States, and Free Standard Shipping to Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico, as well as on irregular items like hazardous materials or oversize packages. The following items are not eligible:

  • Items fulfilled by Amazon Marketplace sellers.
  • Magazine subscriptions.
  • Personalized gift cards.
  • Any item that doesn’t have a message indicating that it’s eligible for Prime on its product page.

Maximizing Amazon Purchases

Whether you get one of these eligible Amex cards, you can also try it with a free 30-Day Trial, and I thought I’d put down some thoughts on maximizing Amazon purchases with other cards as well.

As with all potential bonuses, I first check out, which is a handy site that lists current shopping portal bonuses for various merchants. According to EVReward, EBates is currently offering 3% cash back on purchases, and there are product-specific points bonuses as well.

Screen shot 2014-01-20 at 3.19.42 PM

It pays to keep an eye out for changing offers each month because they change.

Apart from rebates, there’s a great way to maximize purchases using your Chase Ink PlusBold / Cash / Classic cards offer 5 points per dollar at office supply stores and many Staples / Office Depot/ Office Max stores sell Amazon gift cards, so if you have a business and can get one of these cards, this is your best bet. I value Chase points at about 2 cents apiece for the time being, so using an Ink card is essentially a 10% rebate in spend.

Chase also offers an Amazon Visa, which currently gets you a $30 credit upon approval and earns 3 points for every $1 spent on; 2 points for every eligible $1 spent at gas stations, restaurants, and drugstores; and 1 point for every other $1 spent.

Those Amazon points are then redeemable at 1 cent each when shopping on Amazon. I’d take 5X Ultimate Rewards points over 3X Amazon points any day of the week since I value them at much closer to 2 cents apiece (double Amazon points’ value) since I can transfer them to ten travel partners as well as redeeming them for 1.25 cent apiece for travel with Pay With Points if I so choose.

That said, you do have to take a few extra steps to maximize that Chase Ink angle, so for those of you who prefer ease of use, the Amazon Visa might still be your choice in this respect. Still, with the Prime offer for new cardholders on those four Amex cards and the ability to earn 5X with the Ink cards, there are plenty of ways to maximize Amazon purchases.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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  • timmac

    Another big benefit to Amazon prime is that you can share it with up to four family members.

  • Laura

    I’ve had a Blue Cash card for years although its not a card a use very often. If I called and asked to be included in the complimentary year of Amazon Prime, would Amex go for it? Is that something that Amex is known for doing?

  • Steve Gempeler

    Has anyone had experience being a current Amex Plat cardholder and getting a year of Prime free as a courtesy?

  • libbrichus

    I too have a Blue Cash Preferred since last year and would be interested in knowing if anyone has had success getting this thrown in on an existing account.

  • Justin

    I’m going to try. Renewal date is 2/5.

  • MrBurns

    I tried during renewal and was told that it’s only for new card members.

  • jasmine

    Used to shop at amazon a lot until they started to charge the sales tax in my state as well as a lot of others. And now retailers like best buy will match amazons price online if you show them the listing.

  • Juno

    Just the 2 day shipping. Not the rental of books or prime videos/movies.

  • Sheldon Swift

    eBates Cash Back at Amazon is for the following departments only:
    Baby, Clothing, and Amazon Local!

    It does change regularly.

  • Shannon

    How? I thought they took that benefit away …

  • jon

    lol @ this article. “how to get ‘complimentary’ amazon prime” = sign up for an american express card through my links so i can get paid

    there is not any “news” here, you can’t get prime unless you get a new card

  • thepointsguy

    I have not heard of that, but it never hurts to ask!

  • thepointsguy

    Right.. and the title clearly states through American Express.. so I’m not sure what the confusion is

  • Stephen Lioy

    Last I checked that eBates rebate was only for a handful of categories. If that 3% is part of the decision making process, check first to be sure your purchases are eligible!

  • John

    He is just doing his job as a Chase/Amex employee of being a credit card salesman and discusses only the cards that pay him a commission

  • Trav

    And retailers like best buy will charge you the same sales tax. So… not sure what you are saying.

  • Michael

    While Amazon didn’t charge the sales tax you were supposed to voluntarily report the sales tax on your state income tax return. You mean you were don’t that all of these years?

  • Lili Hewitt

    I used the cardmatch tool couple times and always got cards I have zero interest. For both hubby and me. But this time around,hubby got the targeted offer of the Amex PRG for 50,000 sign up bonus and $1000 spending within 3 month. I did the application for him right away and got approved instantly. Wow, thought I would never just cardmatch after so many disapointments. But we hit the jackpot this time. Wondering if there is something we can do to trigger those better offer.

  • WS

    For my $79 Prime membership, I’ve watched over $500 worth of movies and TV series’ this past year. Plus, nearly all of my friends and family live long distance so free shipping on at least 15-20 birthday and Christmas gifts (with two day delivery, not ground). All this savings is worth a couple of plane tickets a year, which will earn me miles and miles and miles! I highly recommend Prime, even if you can’t get it for free.

  • Curtis

    What I’m most curious about is how to take an existing prime membership and have it covered with an amex card. Thoughts on this?

  • ocscorpio

    I don’t get why people like you whine about the referral links. Do you expect everything to be free? TPG puts in a boatload of time and effort to keep this site going and provide invaluable information to people like you and I.

    I don’t know what he makes off the referral links, but my guess if he decided to ditch them and generate the revenue via paid subscriptions from members, people like you would also be the first to bitch and whine about. Personally, I’d rather the credit card companies pay for it. Maybe, unlike you, I’m just smart enough to not click on links and apply for credit cards I don’t want.

  • Lili Hewitt

    Follow up: find a email this morning from Amex that they are expediating the card to us. And 5 minutes later UPS delivered it at the front door. It comes with a nicely designed package,not like any other credit card. Wow,they must really want hubby as their customer.

  • MrWho

    Regular Blue Cash does not come with Prime.

  • Slee

    Is the MB Platinum good? Also, my fiancee just signed up for it last week. Is she eligible? Or was a specific link needed?

  • luv2mtb

    Don’t know ’bout you, but I go to work to get paid. And when folks like TPG provide me with valuable goods and/or services, and get paid, but not by me, its a win-win all around!

  • dfd


  • Kevin

    I already have Amazon prime? Can I use it to extend my membership by one year?

  • Alix

    Just tried it, didn’t work. It’s only an “acquisition offer,” so they can’t apply the deal to any existing Amazon Prime members or anyone who’s opened their AmEx Card within the last 2 years.

  • Michael Hart

    Amex uses shady marketing. I signed up for their preferred cash card, and did not receive the $100 bonus, nor free Amazon prime. It says on their website in little text that you must use “specific websites” to sign up for it. If I had known, I would have opted out for their basic rewards card with no annual fee.

    Sorry Amex. You are added to my list of shady businesses along with Wells Fargo. Goodbye.

  • alex

    I just got an amex premier gold. Does this still work, and does it apply to a premier gold?

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