Amazon Raises Prime Membership Cost To $99

For the first time since it was introduced nine years ago, the cost of Amazon Prime is going up. According to Amazon, existing Prime members will pay $99 per year on their annual renewal date, while Amazon Student members will now pay $49.

The Prime Fresh membership fee will remain unchanged at $299.

In an email sent to current subscribers, Amazon blamed the price hike on rising fuel and transportation costs.

Amazon also took the opportunity to remind members just how far the premium delivery service has come since it was introduced in 2005.

Initially a shipping service — whereby subscribers could receive free two-day shipping on all eligible purchases — in 2011, Amazon also added Amazon Instant Video to the membership package, offering unlimited streaming of select movies and TV shows at no additional cost.

Following that it also opened access to the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library, which allows users to borrow certain titles for free reading on the Kindle platform.

For the next seven days, Amazon is offering new subscribers Prime membership for the original price of $79, before the price rise comes into effect.