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Amazon Soils Diaper Discounts


Diapers just got more expensive for parents who belong to the “Amazon Mom” club. The online retailer this week emailed customers to say it’s phasing out the 30% discount on selected diapers. According to the email, starting on January 24, 2012, the maximum discount available on diapers and wipes subscriptions will be 20%. However, this breaks down to a 5% base discount for “Subscribe & Save” – a service for selected grocery items – and the other 15% only applies to Amazon Mom members who currently have free two-day shipping, or who pay $79 a year for Amazon Prime.

The maximum one-year period of free shipping is also being cut back and moms on Amazon’s message boards are not happy. Those who join Amazon Mom in 2012 will only get three months of free two-day shipping. “After three months, Amazon Mom members can join Amazon Prime in order to continue these benefits,” says Amazon spokeswoman Sally Frouts. (She declined to comment on the reason for the changes.) Amazon Prime includes unlimited streaming of thousands of family-oriented videos, including “Sesame Street” and Disney Channel’s “Phineas and Ferb,” she adds.

However, the maximum 20% discount is still generous, experts say, particularly as diaper prices are rising. The Amazon Mom program was likely too generous and proved too popular, says Stephanie Nelson, founder of “It probably went viral when it was announced,” she says. “A 30% discount was really sweet, but perhaps it was too sweet.” Teri Gault, CEO and founder of the, which matches supermarket sales with coupons, says, “Diapers in general are outrageously expensive and the convenience of diaper with Amazon delivery is fantastic.”

There are deal- and coupon-stacking alternatives to Amazon Mom, which easily beat the minimum 5% discount. and offer extra points or cash back on purchases by using those sites to click through to a favorite retailer. For diapers, Gault suggest using for a 6% discount and for a $2 credit, or clipping newspaper coupons and using them to get another $1.50 credit on She says the latter works out at 18 cents per Huggies Snug & Dry diaper versus 17 cents on Amazon Mom. But before paying $79 for Amazon Prime, she says, “Ask yourself, ‘How much am I saving per diaper?’”


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  • Pay Dirt examines the millions of consumer decisions Americans make every day: What to buy, how much to pay, whether to rave or complain. Lead written by Quentin Fottrell, the blog examines these interactions, providing readers with news, insight and tips on shopping, spending, customer service, and companies that do right – and wrong – by their customers. Send items, questions and comments to or tweet @SMPayDirt.