Amazon has been a global e-commerce leader for many years. With a revenue of $469.8 billion in 2021, Amazon is currently the world’s largest online retailer.
The ecommerce platform allows marketplace third-party sellers to offer a wide range of products, from clothes to kitchen appliances to Kindle e-readers.
As a buyer on the platform, Amazon also offers different payment methods. You can pay through your debit card, credit card, and bank account, among other options.
With all the possibilities Amazon offers, it’s crucial to know the following:
- When does Amazon charge you?
- What are the fees for a Prime membership?
- When do I need to pay for Amazon Pre-orders?
- Do I need to pay Amazon before my order ships?
I answer these questions and more in my article.
Table of Contents
When Does Amazon Charge You For Pre-Orders?
Amazon allows you to pre-order items that have yet to be released, so you have the item as soon as it hits the market.
This is a fantastic feature, but it begs these questions:
- Does Amazon Charge Before Shipping?
- When does Amazon charge you for pre-orders?
- How does Amazon charge debit cards and schedule regular deliveries?
The answer to the first question is: No, Amazon will not charge you before the item ships or enters the shipping process.
Amazon only charges for pre-orders once the item ships. Amazon will only charge you once they’ve shipped the item from the fulfillment center. This process usually starts one to three days before the item’s release date.
Even though Amazon doesn’t charge you for pre-orders immediately, the company will ensure you have enough money in your bank account to pay for your pre-order. Amazon will notify you by email that the transaction didn’t go through if your bank account doesn’t have enough funds or your credit card or debit card declines the transaction.
However, Amazon will also ensure you have enough balance to pay for the item(s). You will receive an email that states the transaction didn’t go through if your bank account doesn’t have enough funds to complete the purchase.
Types of Amazon Orders
Here are the orders you can make on the Amazon marketplace.
Amazon allows you to preorder products that aren’t yet available in the market. Preordering will enable you to get your hands on the latest products as soon as they become available, provided an Amazon third-party seller is advertising them on the platform.
You must enter your credit card information when preordering an item from Amazon. The item’s manufacturer will send you an email informing you of the shipment status of your preorder.
Amazon charges your credit or debit card only once your order leaves the warehouse.
You can also take advantage of Amazon’s pre-order guarantee that ensures you get the best price for the product. The guarantee also allows you to receive a refund from Amazon if the product’s price drops before its official market release.
When you pre-order, you also get free shipping.
A backorder is when you order an item from a store, and it’s out of stock. If your item is on backorder, Amazon won’t charge you because the seller doesn’t have the item yet.
Like preorders, Amazon will email you once the item is in stock and ready to ship.
Amazon charges you only once the product ships.
Subscribe and Save
Amazon Subscribe and Save is an excellent option if you buy certain products regularly. Thousands of products on Amazon are eligible for Subscribe and Save, such as vitamins, diapers, pet food, and baby food.
Amazon charges credit cards every time you receive products, whether weekly, monthly, or whatever delivery frequency you choose.
The good thing is that the subscribe and save price is generally cheaper than buying a product only once (sometimes the lowest price you can get).
And the charges for the Subscribe and Save option can have different amounts depending on the product.
The great thing about this option is that you can save up to 15% when you receive five or more products at one address.
Does Amazon Charge When They Ship?
The answer to this question depends on the store and the product. Some stores charge you after shipping the products, while others don’t.
This allows you to cancel your order and get a refund. You may also avail of free shipping and other applicable discounts.
You can either get a full refund for your canceled Amazon purchase or receive a notification regarding the updated shipping date.
Amazon can help you cancel your order if you cannot pay for the item you ordered.
When Does Amazon Charge for Out-of-Stock Items?
If you order a product that is out of stock, Amazon will only charge you after the orders depart from the warehouse and are delivered as scheduled.
You can still order an out-of-stock item. You just have to wait a while before you receive it.
Upon placing your order, Amazon will notify you by email when new stocks arrive. The third-party seller will receive a notification on his seller account before the shipping process begins.
Amazon will also inform you of the item’s expected release date and whether there will be changes to the delivery date. If the delivery time changes, Amazon will send you the new package arrival date if the delivery time changes.
Alternatively, you can cancel your order if you can’t wait for restocking.
When Should You Wait For Amazon Prime Payments Charge?
Amazon Prime’s digital charge date is either monthly or annually. The Payment process depends on your chosen billing option.
You’ll save more if you pay for an annual membership, which costs $139. Then again, your chosen billing option will depend on your current budget.
Once you sign up, Amazon Prime will inform you of your next charge date through email.
You have to make the payment on the day of your next order, but you can cancel your membership to avoid incurring another charge.
You can pay your membership via credit or debit cards.
You can get a 6-month Amazon Prime free trial if you’re a student. After the trial period, you only need to pay half of the Prime membership fee using your preferred payment method.
However, you should indicate once you graduate. Your Amazon Prime membership will revert to regular pricing after your graduation.
You can also cancel your membership after the trial period. The only drawback of canceling your membership is losing all the Amazon benefits you previously enjoyed.
On the other hand, pausing your membership instead of canceling it means losing the membership perks you previously enjoyed, albeit temporarily.
You won’t get billed as well when you pause your Prime membership. Another thing is that you can still access Amazon Photo, which offers unrestricted storage for your images. That means you can still find your photos on Amazon Photo even if your membership is on pause.
It’s better to pause your membership instead of canceling because you’ll still get to enjoy the same benefits once you decide to resume your membership.
Amazon Prime Benefits
An Amazon Prime membership allows you to enjoy shipping, streaming, reading, and shopping benefits. Here are the benefits you can enjoy if you have a Prime Amazon account:
- Amazon Day – you can choose a weekly delivery day for items you purchase within the week.
- FREE two-day shipping and Same-Day Delivery
- FREE Release-Date Delivery
- FREE No-Rush Shipping
- Unlimited TV and movie streaming for free and paid trial members
- Amazon Channels – costs as low as $4.99 a month for Prime members
- Amazon Music Prime – unlimited, ad-free access to Prime Playlists
- Amazon Music Unlimited – discounts on monthly plans, exclusive annual plans for Prime members
- Prime Gaming – free games, in-game content, free Twitch subscriptions
- Prime Reading
- Amazon First Reads and Amazon First Reads picks
- Whole Foods Market – exclusive savings for Amazon customers, avail expedited shipping via Two-Hour Delivery in selected areas.
- Amazon 4-start and Amazon Books stores
- Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card – 5% back daily on all Amazon.com purchases
- Access to Amazon Fresh
- Prime Try Before You Buy, Personal Shopper by Prime Try Before You Buy
- Deals and Discounts on Amazon Family
- Prime Early Access
- Access to Amazon Elements
- Membership Sharing for two adults living in the same household
- Access to Amazon Photos – unlimited photo storage, enhanced search, and organization features in Amazon Drive
- Grubhub+ Membership – free one-year membership by visiting amazon.com/grubhub, with unlimited $0 delivery fees on orders over $12, food and order discounts, etc.
You can also check out more details about the benefits on the Amazon Prime details page.
Amazon Prime Membership Fees
Amazon Prime implemented a price increase on February 2022. Here is the current membership cost in the US:
- $14.99 for monthly billing ($179.88 annually)
- $11.58 for annual billing ($139 billed annually)
- $8.99 per month for Prime Video members
Meanwhile, the current Amazon Prime Student membership pricing is $7.49 monthly and $69 annually (priced at $5.75 monthly).
Selected government assistance, including Medicaid and EBT recipients, can qualify for Prime Access. The recipient gets a discount on the monthly Prime membership and will only pay $6.99 monthly.
Prepare yourself for an increase in Prime membership fees. According to the ecommerce giant, Amazon Prime membership fees will increase in 2023.
The Bottom Line
Hopefully, reading my guide has given you a much clearer picture of how and when Amazon charges you and the wide assortment of products you can purchase through Amazon.
Knowing how Amazon charges you will help you avoid last-minute surprises and allow you to plan your purchases, subscriptions, and finances.
With a better understanding of how and when Amazon charges, you can save money on future orders and maximize your online shopping experience.
Be careful when placing orders. Occasionally, Amazon might charge you twice or even deliver to the wrong address.