Have you ever tried Amazon’s Subscribe & Save service? If not, it’s something you should be looking into. Not only can you save money, but you can also save valuable time by getting what you need delivered instead of running all over town looking for the best price.
I recently sat down with Erica DeSpain, author of Whimsical September, and Kristen Smith, creator of White Gloves Optional, to discuss how they’ve been successfully saving money and time with Amazon Subscribe & Save.
Erica started using the service about 18 months ago because she was living in a small town in Kansas where she didn’t have access to big-box stores. With two little ones at home, running out for staple items became frustrating, so she decided to give Amazon’s service a try.
“I found it extremely convenient because I have the storage room to store some of the extras. And I got into the math part of it, where I was comparing their prices with stores that would be considered cheaper, like Walmart, and I found that I was saving a lot of money in my monthly budget,” Erica said.
She went on to say, “I revisit my list every month, but I wouldn’t say I’m adding things anymore. I generally just stick with my basic items. When I first signed up, I went through and thought, ‘What are the things I do not want to run out of, ever? Dish soap, trash bags, etc.’ And those were the things I searched for deals on, clipped coupons. I would say for about six months, I would search for things to add.”
Erica makes a habit of checking her Subscribe & Save options at least once a month to see what she might need sooner or not need yet so that she can update her delivery request. She no longer makes a habit of comparing prices though. After using the service for so long, the convenience has become a huge advantage. Even if she can find a slightly lower price at Walmart, not having to pack the kids up and drive to the store is worth any extra cost.
As an added bonus, Erica finds it easier to stick to her tight grocery budget by ordering online. By using Subscribe & Save for online shopping, she’s able to keep a closer eye on how much she’s spending.
As for Kristen, she started using Subscribe & Save after Amazon suggested the service to her. After reading a blog post about saving time by using the service, she decided to give it a try. After all, with a family and home to take care of, work and her own personal goals, she was already stretched thin.
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She’s now been using the service for almost two years, after relocating to an area that had fewer convenient shopping locations. She intentionally cut down on the frequency of errands like grocery shopping.
Speaking about how the service has changed her spending habits, Kristen said, “I’m much more intentional about my spending. I take into account not just the hard cost but what will something cost in terms of time, energy, going out of my way. There are sometimes items that are available for slightly less locally but would require a significant deviation from my routine. I’ve learned to ask the question: Is the savings worth the cost?”
She estimates that on dog food alone, she typically saves about $11 a month. “Add into that the cost of impulse purchases or stop-gap convenience buys until I can get to our normal purchase and [the savings] is substantial.”
If you’re not already using Amazon’s Subscribe & Save service, it’s time to start. Not only can you save money on your regular pantry purchases, but you can save a significant amount of time running around — time that could be much better spent.
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