Amazon Shoppers Are Angry About This New Policy, Starting Oct. 25
Some customers say they plan to cancel their Prime membership altogether as a result.
A lot of us rely heavily on Amazon's fast shipping, even though the company doesn't have a perfect track record with customers. In 2020, the marketplace was hit with a slew of negative reviews from shoppers, who complained about delays, packages never arriving, and damaged items. This year, many Amazon customers expressed their disdain for the company after former CEO Jeff Bezos thanked them for "paying" for his flight to space. But a new policy set to come into effect in late October is making some customers so angry, they say they plan to cancel their Amazon Prime memberships altogether as a result. Read on to find out more about how Amazon is upsetting customers once again.
Amazon is adding a new fee to Whole Foods deliveries in October.
Amazon Prime members were notified on Sept. 24 that there will soon be a change coming to any Whole Foods delivery order placed through the marketplace, CNN reported. According to an email sent to members, every order for the grocery store placed through Amazon Prime will include a $9.95 delivery charge, starting Oct. 25. This service was originally free as a perk for paying Prime members, who already pay $12.99 per month or $119 per year, plus taxes.
Customers aren't happy about the new policy.
News of the additional fee has not sat well with Prime members, many of whom have taken to voicing their complaints online. "Those Prime benefits keep getting diluted every year," someone tweeted in reference to the new policy. Another Twitter user said, "Think Amazon/Whole Foods just killed their delivery model by instituting a $10 service fee. If you have food delivered 2-3x month, that's somewhere around $50 just in tips and fees. Pretty steep."
Many customers also say they no longer have any reason to do their grocery shopping through the marketplace now. "Amazon just eliminated the reason I do the Prime Whole Foods ordering thing. If you're going to add $10 fee, your grocery competitors, which all have delivery services now, are much more attractive," one user tweeted on Sept. 24. Another added, "So Amazon now wants $10 extra per Whole Foods delivery … which is enough to get us to just cancel Prime altogether."
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Whole Foods says the new fee is to help cover operating costs.
A Whole Foods Market spokesperson told Fox Business that the fee was added so that the grocer would not have to increase the prices of its products to offset "operating costs, including equipment, technology, and other costs" associated with the Amazon delivery service. The company said it had delivered more than three times as many orders in 2020 than it had before the pandemic, and as the pandemic goes on, "customers continue to rely on delivery for their stocking up needs, as average basket sizes have continued to increase since the beginning of 2021," the spokesperson said.
"This service fee helps to cover operating costs so we can continue to offer the same competitive everyday prices in-store and online at Whole Foods Market," Amazon wrote in its email to Prime members, which many have shared on Twitter. The spokesperson told Fox that the company has had "consistent pricing on everyday priced products in store and online."
This fee has already been implemented in some areas.
Depending on where you live, you may not have until Oct. 25 to run through your perk of free delivery for Whole Foods' orders. According to Amazon, this new fee has already been rolled out in six cities: Portland, Maine; Providence, Rhode Island; Manchester, New Hampshire; and the greater Detroit, Boston, and Chicago areas. In these areas, the new policy went into effect on Aug. 30.
Fees may be different depending on your order as well. According to Amazon, there will be no service fee added to Amazon Fresh delivery orders. But for orders from Whole Foods, "additional rush fees apply on one hour delivery orders. Grocery pickup will continue to be free for Prime members on orders over $35," Amazon states on its website.