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If you have Amazon Prime, don’t buy Christmas gifts without taking advantage of these benefits


Your Amazon Prime benefits make shopping easier.

Angela Lang / CNET

It’s the time of year to stock up on gifts for friends and family – and Amazon says so The 2020 Christmas shopping season is the biggest yet. So if you have a Prime membership, now is a great time to take full advantage of your benefits.

While you probably know that as a Prime member you can get free two-day shipping, did you know you can also get packages earlier or schedule a delivery date that is more convenient for you? Or that you can become exclusive deals with Alexa on your Amazon Echo?

Here are all the ways the Prime membership you already have – and your Amazon Echo – can help you shop today.

Read more: Christmas Gift Guide 2020: Top Picks from CNET Editors


Schedule a convenient ship date during Amazon Day checkout.

James Martin / CNET

Get extra discounts by shopping with Alexa

You can use your Amazon Echo to ask “Alexa, what are my deals?” always. Alexa will then share exclusive Prime deals with you and you will have the option to add the item to your cart, purchase it now, or move on to the next deal.

Schedule a suitable shipping date for your package

Everyone knows Amazon’s free two-day shipping, but another option is to order choose a delivery date during checkout. It’s called Amazon Day, and it’s useful when there’s a specific day you know someone will be home to answer parcels – especially if it’s something pricey that you don’t want to risk sitting outside unattended.

If you order multiple items on different days, you can have them delivered the same day as long as they qualify for this offer.

Use your Amazon Echo to track packages

If you have a Amazon Echo of any kind, you can use it to track your orders.

Just say “Alexa, where’s my package?” and your ultrasound lets you know where it is and when it will arrive. Once your order has been delivered, the Echo’s ring light flashes yellow and if you have the Echo Show, the delivery confirmation will appear on the screen.

30 Amazon Echo Studio

Use an Amazon Echo to track your packages.

Sarah Tew / CNET

Buy Early Access deals for non-Prime members

If something you’ve been watching says “ Prime Early Access, ” as a Prime member, you can buy that offer 30 minutes earlier than non-Prime members. However, you still have to compete with other members who are also interested in the product before it sells out.

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Use Prime Now to get what you ordered in a few hours

If there’s a product you want the same day, you can see if it’s available in Prime Now. Amazon delivers from morning to night, so you don’t have to worry about getting your order at 3am

This way of shopping is useful if you really need to go to the supermarket, but don’t want to risk losing that new item, such as a new Echo device that may go on sale. Prime Now is not available in all areas, so enter your zip code at primenow.amazon.com to see if you qualify. Keep in mind that you will need to add a tip for delivery here, unlike a normal Amazon Prime order.

Share your Prime benefits with your family

If there is another adult living in your household, such as a partner or a friend, you can share your Prime membership with them. You can still keep your personal accounts separate, but you both have access to the same Prime benefits.

You can also share your account with up to four teenagers and up to four children in your household. Although they have their own logins, you can still manage their profiles.


Amazon employees can leave a package in your home with Amazon Key.

Tyler Lizenby / CNET

Amazon can leave your package in your home or garage

If you know you won’t be home for a while and you have a shipment on its way, it’s much safer to have an Amazon employee leave your things in your house or garage to prevent theft.

If you the Amazon Key Home Kit or Amazon In-Garage Delivery Kit, you can request to leave your expensive packages in your home or garage for free. The Home kit itself costs $ 257 (currently sold out) and comes with a cloud cam and a smart lock, so you’re responsible for letting the delivery person in and watch as it happens. The garage kit retails for $ 30 and turns your garage into a smart one.

If you are on your guard let a complete stranger into your homeKeep in mind that you will also receive notifications throughout the process. Note that you can also choose to block delivery to your home, for example if you know you will be home during that time.

For more shopping tips this year, here how to return your Amazon parcels quickly, easily and for free. Also, read this before buying a tech gift this holiday season.

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