Amazon Prime is synonymous with free (two-day) shipping for those who pay for the annual membership. But with a new service called Prime Pantry, Amazon is betting that Prime customers will agree to pony up and pay for shipping for items such as 12-can packs of Coke or a six-roll paper towel pack.
The service gives Prime customers the ability to order as much canned foods, cereal, snacks, beverages and everyday household items as can fit in a four-cubic-foot box that holds up to 45 pounds. No matter how packed or empty the box is, it costs $5.99 to deliver it. As customers add Pantry items to their online shopping cart, they are told what percentage of the box is full.
For Amazon, the program gives them a way to try to drive demand for some products that would have been cost-prohibitive to ship for free.
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