Prime Day banner showing July 15 and 16

Amazon normally charges $120 a year for Prime. But you don’t have to pay that much to get access to the sales this Prime Day on July 15 and 16. There are some cheaper (even free!) ways to score Prime.

Anyone: Get 30 Days of Free Amazon Prime

If you’ve never signed up for Amazon Prime before—or maybe even if you have—you can get a free 30-day subscription. That’s enough time to shop the Prime Day deals on Amazon and then cancel the subscription later, if you don’t want to pay.

We’ve seen reports that Amazon offers this free trial to people who haven’t paid for Amazon Prime in the last 12 months, too. If you have a lapsed Prime membership, visit the Prime sign-up page and see if Amazon offers you a free trial once again.

After your 30 days, Amazon will automatically upgrade you to a paid subscription. Be sure to cancel your subscription if you don’t want to keep it. You’ll keep it until the end of the 30-day period even if you cancel immediately.

Prime 30-day free trial

Students: Get Six Months of Free Prime

Amazon offers six free months of Prime for students. Amazon will verify you’re a student by sending an email to a .edu email address you control.

After that, the Prime Student membership will renew at either $59 a year or $6.49 per month—about half the cost of a standard Prime subscription. You can keep it at this lower price or cancel auto-renew to prevent Amazon from billing you.

EBT or Medicaid: Get Prime for Half Price

If you have an EBT or Medicaid card, Amazon will let you sign up for a cheaper Prime membership. You’ll get the same 30-day free trial anyone else can get. Amazon will then bill you $5.99 per month for Prime.

That’s about half the cost of a standard Prime subscription, which usually costs $12.99 a month or $119 a year.

Anyone: Pay For a Month Instead of a Year

Let’s say you don’t currently subscribe to Prime, but you aren’t eligible for a free 30-day subscription yet. Do you have to pay $120 to access those Prime Day sales?

No, you don’t. You can instead pay for a single month of Prime. Sign up for a monthly subscription, pay for a single month at $12.99 per month, and then cancel when you’re done. It will cost you just $12.99 to access the Prime Day sales. Maybe you can even binge something on Amazon Prime Video while you’re at it.

If you’re a frequent Amazon shopper who wants Prime, a yearly subscription is a better deal—it’s cheaper. If you just want Prime occasionally, a monthly subscription is more flexible.

Family Members: Share a Prime Membership

Two adults in a household can share their Amazon Prime membership. So, if your partner or spouse has a Prime account already, you don’t have to pay for your own. You don’t have to share a single account, either—you can each have your personal Amazon account but share the Prime membership.

To take advantage of this as a Prime subscriber, you’ll have to add a second adult account to your “Amazon Household.” That second account will get Prime benefits for free.

RELATED: How to Cancel Amazon Prime

More Prime Day Deals

Whole Foods Prime Day $10 offer banner

If you have a Whole Foods near you and you’re a Prime subscriber, consider swinging by. If you spend at least $10 at Whole Foods and scan your Prime Code or provide a linked phone number, you’ll get a $10 credit to spend on Amazon on Prime Day. You must pay at Whole Foods by the end of July 16, and you have to use your credit by the end of July 17.

Bonus: If you have two people in an Amazon Household and they’re sharing the same Prime membership, each can get a $10 credit. Assuming you were going to spend $20 on Amazon this Prime Day anyway, that’s basically $20 of free groceries. Even if you have to pay $12.99 for a month of Prime, that’s a good deal.

On Prime Day, use a limited time Amazon Assistant promotion to save $10 on a $100 or more order—all you have to do is purchase through the Amazon Assistant browser extension and use the code GET10PD at checkout. (This deal should work for multiple people, too—if you have two adults in a household and you’re spending $100 on each account, that’s another $20 discount in total.)

There’s one more deal you might be eligible for: If you have an American Express card, Amex might give you three months of free Amazon Prime. Visit this page on Amazon’s website to see if you’re eligible.

RELATED: How to Get Your Amazon Prime Discounts at Whole Foods

Chris Hoffman Chris Hoffman
Chris Hoffman is Editor-in-Chief of How-To Geek. He's written about technology for over a decade and was a PCWorld columnist for two years. Chris has written for The New York Times, been interviewed as a technology expert on TV stations like Miami's NBC 6, and had his work covered by news outlets like the BBC. Since 2011, Chris has written over 2,000 articles that have been read nearly one billion times---and that's just here at How-To Geek.
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