How to Get Primed for Amazon Prime Day


Alas, we knew this day would come. Amazon's fourth annual Prime Day Sale is about to crash from the virtual sky like a meteor in Fortnite, and as of April, there are 100 million Amazon Prime members set to scoop up all the deals that land.

Prime Day started innocently enough back in 2015. It was a day-long sale celebrating Amazon's 20th anniversary, and a fun gift to the millions of Prime subscribers. The sale was so successful that Amazon made it an annual event, and it's been getting bigger and nuttier ever since.

This year, Prime Day will stretch 36 straight hours, and likely feature more deals then ever, and in new categories. Amazon now owns Whole Foods and is trying to promote Twitch Prime, so we can expect more food and gaming deals for starters. Below are some tips if you have something you're hoping to buy on discount.

Amazon Prime Day is Over: Be sure to check out our Post-Prime Day Deals and Non-Amazon Deals in the next couple days. After that, be sure to keep an eye on WIRED's Gear page for the latest product reviews, guides, insights, and deals. (Updated Tues. July 18)

Our Prime Day Coverage

Amazon Prime Day has started. These are our stories so far.

When Prime Day Starts

  • Starts: Prime Day kicks off on Monday, July 16 at 3 p.m. ET.

  • Ends: 36 hours later on Wednesday, July 18 at 3 a.m. ET.

That's not all, though. You can expect bursts of pre-Prime Day deals all the way to kickoff. Amazon already has a bunch of deals on its own devices, which we've highlighted below, and more are on the way.

Early Prime Day Deals

Here are a few of the early Prime Day deals Amazon has going.

Update on July 16: Amazon's Prime Day Sale has begun, and we have a list of the best Amazon Device Deals and a full list of great deals from all categories here.

Early Prime Day Device Deals

Early Prime Day Subscription Deals

How to Snag the Best Deals

Prime Day is basically another Black Friday for Amazon. There are deals on almost everything, but not all of them are great. But to join the deal party, you must be an Amazon Prime member. You can sign up for Amazon Prime here. There is a 1-month free trial, and students can get 6 months free (and a discount), but odds are you're already onboard. If not, you should know that Prime is about $10 a month (if you subscribe annually) and offers free 2-day shipping on many items and access to the Prime Video service. There are other perks, like free Kindle books, and you can read them all here.

Get Your Cards in Order: Timing is everything. Sign up for Amazon Prime, and if you don't shop on Amazon all that often, make sure your credit card and shipping address defaults are set, and that you have 1-click ordering enabled. Once you add a deal item to your cart, you'll have about 15 minutes to buy before it's released to another eager shopper.

Set Up Deal Alerts for Particular Products: If you're hoping a particular item will go on sale, there are ways to keep an eye on it. First, install the Amazon Shopping app for iPhone or Android so you can get instant notifications. Then add the items to your Amazon Cart (You can "Save for Later"). Amazon should notify you if the price changes.

Another way to track changes is by using It lets you search up the price history of any product on Amazon and track them at a click. Better yet, if you sign up (free), it can import and track prices on your entire Amazon Wish List. (You can easily make wish lists on Amazon by clicking on the "Add to List" button on every product page.)

Track Upcoming Lightning Deals: Lightning Deals can be super stressful. It's so easy to miss them, but if you have the time to browse through deals in the morning, you can track upcoming Lightning Deals using the Amazon Shopping app. Click on the hamburger icon in the upper left, then Today's Deals > Upcoming. You can click the "Watch this Deal" button on any deal that's more than 10 minutes away to add it to your "Watching" list. The app should then notify you the moment Lightning strikes.


Set up an Echo for Alexa Exclusive Deals: Last year Amazon offered Alexa-only pre-Prime day deals, and this year it's already doling out prizes to try it. If you own an Echo device, you can set up voice purchasing. In the Alexa app on your phone, head to Settings > Accounts and select "Purchase by Voice." Learn more about it here.

Other Stores Will Have Sales, Too

Historically, retailers like Walmart and Best Buy have gotten pretty worked up about Amazon Prime Day and offered their own defensive sales to try and steal some of Amazon's thunder. Below are a few stores likely to start having sales right around Prime Day and before.

If you're shopping over the 4th, be sure to check out the Best 4th of July Tech Sales going on.

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