Last year in October Amazon came up with something new. They call it Add-On. I noticed it, but I rarely order just one low dollar item from Amazon and it’s never really been that big of a deal, until recently. “Add-On” is now tagged on some products and you can only order them if you order at least $25 worth of product being shipped from Amazon.
I assume Amazon came up with this option because I can see they would be losing out on shipping if people were regularly ordering items under $5 with their PRIME account.
Sometimes I can really understand how they might be losing out on shipping when these gigantic boxes filled with bubble packs arrive with one lone bottle of vitamins at the bottom.
I invested in my own PRIME account last year. Previously my son and I shared his PRIME account (that is my Amazon affiliate link in case you want to check it out) but he moved out. I really feel that having Amazon PRIME saves me money. If I lived in the city, right next to stores and malls, it might not be worth it to me. But I live in a rural area and the nearest grocery store is 15 miles away. The nearest health food store is over 25. I belong to a food coop but I have to drive almost 40 miles to pick up my order – when I do order!
In fact, the coop manager and I were just talking about Amazon PRIME a couple of weeks ago. We’re both in the same situation where we have to drive many miles to get to stores and we were comparing notes on how it was actually saving us money and time to order some things from Amazon.
But back to the Add-On deal. Last month when I was getting ready for my 50th birthday party I was doing some shopping on Amazon and some of the things I was ordering just so happened to be those silly little Add-On items.
I felt like I was back to having a regular account and trying to get free shipping by ordering $25 worth of stuff. I read at one site that the items that are “Add-On” used to be available only in case sizes. I don’t believe that explanation since I happen to have ordered one of the “Add-On” products back in January 2012 by itself, with no problem.
The thing that I don’t understand is why I can’t buy the product at all, unless I order more items and get my cart up to $25. I think Amazon should give us the option to pay for shipping if that one item is all we want.
Today I was placing an order for my mother who is currently housebound. She doesn’t have a computer and she needed a few things. Well, three of those things that she wanted cost under $5 each but were all Add-On products. So there was no way for us to get those items shipped unless we continued to fill her cart to meet the required amount. At one point I thought we had enough in the cart but when I checked out I discovered that we were still short by $1.04. Instead of going through the hassle of trying to figure out what my mom would like for $1, I just found some post it notes and stuck those in the cart. Then I could finally move forward and place the order.
I think Amazon should give us the option to pay for shipping when we really want these items. I guess they want us to buy more stuff. As an example if there were no restrictions on the items I was buying for my mother today, we would have stopped when the cart was around $15.00. To ship those few items in a Priority USPS box it would have cost less than $6. But instead we had to keep finding things until we had $25 worth of products shipping from Amazon. By that time the total was $38 ($4 of that was individual shipping from one of the items we ordered that was not being shipped from Amazon).
UPDATE: I just received an email from Amazon which said in part, “We thought you’d like to know that we shipped your item, and that this completes your order.”
You’ll never guess what just shipped all by its lonesome… the post it notes that I put in the cart to bring the order up to meet the required $25! Oh the irony!!
Has the Add-On feature bothered you at all?