The Hidden Benefit of Amazon Prime Membership – Free Shipping Boxes!

It's been a busy holiday season at my home.  It seems like two or three brown boxes of Christmas cheer arrive on my doorstep each day in December.  The contents are removed, wrapped, and placed under the tree.  The boxes begin to pile up in the basement.  Most people would break them down and set them out with their recyclables on garbage day.  Not me.  I cherish these boxes!  They are a hidden benefit of my Amazon Prime membership.  When I add up the cost savings on Amazon items, perks accompanying Prime membership, Amazon's terrific customer service, and free (gently used) Amazon branded shipping boxes, I know that I'm coming out well ahead of the $79 annual Amazon Prime membership fee.  For $6.59 per month, I receive Two-Day Shipping on practically everything Amazon sells, unlimited streaming videos from Amazon's Prime Instant Video library, and FREE shipping boxes.

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Look at all these boxes!  All of these arrived in the span of one month!  Despite looking like a cardboard Guernica, these boxes are in excellent shape and are Amazon branded.  As a third-party Amazon Marketplace merchant, it's nice to ship out my Amazon sales to my Amazon customers in Amazon branded boxes.  I have a stockpile of Amazon boxes in all different sizes.

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As you can see, Amazon boxes have alphanumeric codes printed on them that function as size indicators.  With a quick Google search, I found Incompetech's incomplete listing of Amazon shipping box codes.  I usually eyeball my item and pick out the box that I think will provide the best fit.

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To store my Amazon shipping boxes, I break them down and sort them by code.  I keep them sorted by size / code in a very large box that sits on my basement floor.  When I need a box, I grab one, tape up the bottom, remove all the old shipping labels, place my item in the box with its packing slip and necessary dunnage, tape it up, and slap on my freshly printed shipping label on the outside of the box.  Off to the Post Office I go.  I keep a second box full of USPS Priority and Express Mail envelopes and boxes for my expedited services.

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Breaking down your boxes and storing them flat will save you a lot of space.  Organizing them by size will save you a lot of time.  Joining Amazon Prime will get you many "free" shipping boxes and save you lots of money, so what are you waiting for?  Start your FREE 30 day Amazon Prime trial and decide if its right for you.

Benefits of Amazon Prime Membership:

  • FREE Two-Day Shipping on eligible items (almost everything Amazon sells, including items Fulfilled by Amazon but not sold by Amazon)
  • FREE Amazon Prime Instant Video - has a very similar catalog to Netflix and works on most home streaming devices and mobile devices
  • Kindle Owner's Lending Library - borrow e-books from Amazon's virtual library
  • Incredible customer service
  • "FREE" Shipping Boxes

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