There’s a good reason Amazon users spent more than £3.3 billion on products in just 36 hours last year. That reason is Amazon Prime Day.
Year on year, the flash sales event – a sort of Black Friday spin-off – breaks sales records and gives Amazon Prime customers access to deals and discounts on tech, electronics and more.
Of course, navigating millions of offers is no easy task.
To help you prepare for Amazon Prime Day 2019, we’ve picked up some hints and tips from previous years’ sales and will continue to curate the best deals and information for you as the day draws nearer.
What is Amazon Prime Day?
Amazon Prime Day first took place on July 15, 2015, to mark the anniversary of the company by chief executive Jeff Bezos. At its inception it was a day-long flash sale of wanton products (mostly tech and electronics which rarely went on sale) but it has become bigger and longer in the years since.
To participate, users must be signed up to Amazon Prime, the £79-a-year subscription service that gives users access to free, unlimited one-day delivery on many items, as well as Amazon Prime Video, Prime Music, Prime Reading and early access to deals.
It's believed that about eight million people in the UK subscribe to the service and 100 million worldwide.
When is Amazon Prime Day?
As predicted, the American retail giant will launch Prime Day 2019 on July 15 and the event will last 48 hours.
Becoming more inaccurately named by the year, Amazon have actually added an extra 12 hours of shopping to this year's Prime 'Day'. Instead, and for the first time, you'll be able to hunt for new TVs, video games, laptops, Echos, Kindles, and more over two full days.
Last year, Prime Day ran for 36 hours from Monday July 16 to Tuesday July 17. In 2017, the sales extravaganza ran for 30 hours from Monday July 19.
How does it work exactly?
You need to be an Amazon Prime member to get access to the best deals. If you're not yet a member, click here for a free 30-day trial (for students, the trial period is six months).
Typically, there are two types of deals:
- Those that last all day - or for the full sales period
- Lightning deals, which are activated at a particular time and only last until the stock of that particular product has run out.
You'll have to be on the ball, though - new deals are released as often as every five minutes and many sell out quickly.
What deals can we expect?
With over one million deals available worldwide and only 36 hours to shop them, Amazon Prime Day was in a league of its own last year. Of course, it only tends to get bigger.
For Prime Day 2019, we expect to see a huge push for Amazon’s own products. Last year’s most popular products was its own Echo Dot and Fire TV Stick (with Alexa Voice remote).
Kindles, Fire Tablets and Prime Video and Music subscriptions also top the most searched-for and purchased gifts of Prime Day.
Away from their own stock room, 2018’s most successful Prime Day deals included a Bosch Cordless Combi Drill, Finish dishwasher tablets, The Greatest Showman on DVD and a 15-month PlayStation Plus membership.
Price-wise, we expect tech products to receive the most drastic cuts. Last year, the original Echo Show dropped from £199.99 to £99.99, the 2nd-gen Echo Dot from £49.99 to £29.99, and the main Echo from £89.99 to £59.99. Even the never-discounted Kindle Oasis was cut from £229.99 to £179.99, and more affordably, the Paperwhite from £109.99 to £74.99.
Mobile phone deals and TV deals are also frequently reduced, as are discounts on coffee machines. Many are discounted by 50 per cent or more, so Prime Day is a great opportunity to invest in your future caffeine consumption.
Tips on getting the best deals
Don't despair if something's sold out, join the waiting list
It's very frustrating when the one thing you've wanted more than any other goes on sale and immediately sells out. If the product you're after runs out or says '100 per cent claimed', we recommend joining the waiting list; you'll be alerted if it goes back on sale.
If someone has a lightning deal in their basket for over 15 minutes, it'll be removed and will go back on sale – so there's always hope if something appears to be sold out.
Make sure to keep an eye out for lightning deals, as they are one of the best ways to get a bargain on Prime Day. These can be found on the deal of the day page. Lightning deals are only available for a limited time (usually just a few hours) or they might have a limited number of items available for the discount. The best deals sell out fast, but many are posted throughout the day.
Compare high street prices
Amazon offers a huge range of excellent deals on Amazon Prime Day, but they aren't the only retailer to do so. This means it's worth shopping around (though if it's a lightning deal, you haven't got long). Many outlets match Amazon's prices – and the likes of John Lewis, Currys PC World, Argos, Tesco Direct and Debenhams could well be holding their own flash sales at the same time.
Read more tips here.