Why you can trust ZDNET : ZDNET independently tests and researches products to bring you our best recommendations and advice. When you buy through our links, we may earn a commission. Our process

'ZDNET Recommends': What exactly does it mean?

ZDNET's recommendations are based on many hours of testing, research, and comparison shopping. We gather data from the best available sources, including vendor and retailer listings as well as other relevant and independent reviews sites. And we pore over customer reviews to find out what matters to real people who already own and use the products and services we’re assessing.

When you click through from our site to a retailer and buy a product or service, we may earn affiliate commissions. This helps support our work, but does not affect what we cover or how, and it does not affect the price you pay. Neither ZDNET nor the author are compensated for these independent reviews. Indeed, we follow strict guidelines that ensure our editorial content is never influenced by advertisers.

ZDNET's editorial team writes on behalf of you, our reader. Our goal is to deliver the most accurate information and the most knowledgeable advice possible in order to help you make smarter buying decisions on tech gear and a wide array of products and services. Our editors thoroughly review and fact-check every article to ensure that our content meets the highest standards. If we have made an error or published misleading information, we will correct or clarify the article. If you see inaccuracies in our content, please report the mistake via this form.


Free October Prime Day: Get access to deals even if you're not a Prime member

Don't miss out on Amazon's Prime Big Deal Days sale. ZDNET found ways you can save without paying for a Prime membership.
Written by David Gewirtz, Senior Contributing Editor
Reviewed by Nina Raemont
zdnet october prime day 2023

It seems somehow unfair. Some of Amazon's very best deals of the year are available during its annual Prime Day events, but access to those deals requires paying $139 for a year's membership.

But does it? We're going to show you how you can avoid that $139 fee and get full and complete access to all the Amazon Prime Day deals and discounts just in time for Amazon's upcoming Prime Big Deal Days on Oct. 10 and Oct. 11.

Also: Everything you need to know about Amazon's Prime Big Deal Days

Free trial 

Good news! If you haven't been an Amazon Prime member in the last 12 months, you qualify for a free 30-day trial. Just look for the big yellow "Start your 30-day free trial" button. 

Buy for one month only

If you don't qualify for the free trial, one approach is to buy a Prime membership for just one month. After all, if you really just want access for a few days, a month's membership should do you. A month's membership will set you back $14.99. That's low enough that if you just get free shipping on a few products, it will pay for itself.

But you can do better.

Qualify for a student discount and free trial

If you're a student and a new member, you can sign up for a Prime Student membership (here's how). Prime Student gets you a six month free trial, and then you pay $7.49 a month if you decide to keep the service, or $69 per year compared to $139 for a regular membership. (And you wonder why adults are always saying, "Stay in school.")

Discount for government assistance recipients

If you're on one of the qualifying government assistance programs including SNAP, WIC, and TANF, you can get a Prime membership for half off. That brings the cost down to $6.99 a month. That might still be a lot to bite off, but at least it's something.

Don't forget

Just remember to cancel any free trial before your 30 days are up if you don't want to become a member, or you will be helping to pay for Bezos' rocket fuel.

So there you go. A few different ways to save money on Prime. And while you have a Prime membership, be sure to check out Prime Video, which comes free with your trial membership. My favorite shows to binge during your trial membership are The Man in The High Castle, The Grand Tour, The Expanse, and Good Omens.

Editorial standards