At a time when much of the world is out of sorts, Amazon is doing its part to make things a little better. The company has launched a program that makes Prime memberships more affordable for low-income customers.
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Prime service will be available at a discounted monthly rate for people using an Electronic Benefit Transfer card (EBT). EBT cards are used to disburse funds for several government assistance programs, including Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), and Women, Infants, and Children Nutrition Program (WIC).
"We designed this membership option for customers receiving government assistance to make our everyday selection and savings more accessible, including the many conveniences and entertainment benefits of Prime," Vice President of Amazon Prime Greg Greeley said in a statement on Tuesday.
Customers get all the perks of a Prime membership, including free two-day shipping and access to Amazon Prime Video. And they can cancel their membership at any time.
The new program allows eligible customers to get Amazon's Prime membership for $5.99 a month, which is almost 50% off the original monthly rate of $10.99. For customers paying annually, it's less of a deal. The regular Amazon Prime yearly rate is $99, and the program rate works out to $72 per year, making it a 29% savings.
Prime can be considered a luxury for those who prefer to stay home and do their shopping, but for many, it can provide access to essential items they otherwise wouldn't have access to — whether that's because of lack of transportation, lack of shopping opportunities, or the inability to leave their homes due to disabilities.