PHOTO: TATIANA LAPINA
I have a problem with late-night Amazon shopping. There, I admitted it. I’m a night person so I tend to stay up late working. I’m also a person that gets easily distracted, so when I’m working I’ll suddenly remember I need toothpaste or that I’m out of granola bars. So I open Amazon and put the item in my cart, BUT if I spend a bit more I get free one-day shipping. So I end up searching for items I don’t need, like a new hard drive or 120 pairs of socks. Then it’s oh look this baby crib also has prime shipping, I should get that now so that I’m prepared if I ever have a baby. When all's said and done, I’ve spent way more than I should have. It’s like a digital trip to a Target.
LifeHacker understands. So they’ve highlighted Amazon’s relatively unknown gift card funding program , which lets you basically set yourself an Amazon budget. You choose an amount and can add that amount to a digital gift card. This amount can be a one-time amount or you can set up daily, weekly, bi-monthly or monthly spends. So if you want to make it so that you only spend x number of dollars a month, this is a great feature.
It was probably intended for kids away at college but if it keeps me from buying a new hair dryer that I don’t need, then I don’t care.
Bonus info: Turns out it’s not just me that spends more because things have prime shipping. According to this Huffington Post article Prime members say they spend an average of about $1,500 on amazon annually. Non-Prime members are only spending an average of $625. I officially bow down to my new corporate overlord.