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Amazon Prime was first launched back in 2005, and shortly thereafter our family signed up to take advantage of the reduced rates on shipping.
The service first launched at a $79/year price point, and over the years it has gone up to $119/year while adding a number of benefits besides the free 2-day shipping.
Amazon Prime now also includes Amazon Prime Video, Prime Music, free Kindle e-books, unlimited photo storage, exclusive access to great deals on Amazon products and more.
We buy a lot of things via Amazon, and watch a lot of the Prime Video, and as such we definitely get our money’s worth. We’ve been extremely happy with the service.
Over the years Amazon seems to always be adding new features to Prime, often these perks were available and I didn’t even realize it.
This week I discovered something new. If you order an item, and it has a guaranteed delivery date on your checkout page, if it doesn’t arrive on the promised date, you could receive a refund of your shipping fees. But it’s not just going to happen automatically, you have to request compensation.
Let’s take a look at what I did in order to get a credit applied to my account.
Free 2-Day Shipping With Guaranteed Delivery
Amazon promises Prime members free 2-day shipping on millions of products on their store, but what happens if your package is delivered late? Sometimes it happens, and it can cause an inconvenience if an item doesn’t arrive when you were expecting it.
After we had a package miss it’s promised delivery this past week I learned that Amazon may actually compensate you if an item doesn’t make it’s guaranteed delivery date.
Here’s how Amazon describes the guarantee, and it’s caveats, on their FAQ page:
If we provide a guaranteed delivery date on the checkout page, your shipping fees may be refunded if we miss our promised delivery date. The following requirements must be met to qualify for a delivery guarantee refund:
- Shipping method selected is shipping option advertised on a product detail page.
- Order is shipping to eligible address.
- Order is placed before “order within” countdown listed on the checkout page. The “order within” countdown timer provides the window of time in which you must place your order to receive your delivery by the date shown. That delivery date may become unavailable within that window of time due to changes in inventory or delivery capacity before you place your order. Your confirmed delivery date is included in your order confirmation E-mail. Contact us with any concerns.
- If you order contains items that aren’t eligible for guaranteed delivery, shipping preference “Ship my items as they become available” is selected.
- Your credit or debit card must be successfully charged before the deadline displayed on the checkout page.
- The guarantee does not apply if we miss our promised delivery date because of an unforeseen circumstance outside of our control, such as a strike, natural disaster, or severe winter storm. Also, delivery scans might be inaccurate.
- An attempted delivery on or before the guaranteed delivery date meets our delivery guarantee.
- An offer by the carrier of a delivery appointment on or before the guaranteed delivery date meets our delivery guarantee
So if you find that your order meets all of the requirements above, you may be eligible to receive compensation in some form.
What Compensation Can You Expect For A Late Amazon Delivery?
So what compensation can someone expect to receive from Amazon for a delivery that has missed it’s guaranteed delivery date?
The answer seems to be that it depends.
In checking with others who have successfully asked for compensation, it can range anywhere from receiving a credit on their account, to a free month of Amazon Prime, to a full refund on the item and and shipping cost. So it can vary widely.
Here are a few examples of what other customers received when I did a search online:
- Full refund of item and shipping cost.
- $40 Amazon credit after repeated late deliveries.
- $10 Amazon credit.
- $5 Amazon credit.
- Free month of Amazon Prime + 30% refund of the order.
- 4 late deliveries lead to free month of Amazon Prime, $30 credit, one $15 item for free.
- Free month of Amazon Prime.
The most common compensation that I’ve seen is a free month of Amazon Prime, but it does appear pretty common for people to receive Amazon credit as well. I think the amount received tends to vary depending on the cost of the product, the number of late deliveries, and possibly other factors.
How To Get Compensation For Your Late Amazon Delivery
Once you’ve determined that you’re probably eligible to receive compensation for your late Amazon delivery, how do you go about receiving that compensation?
You need to contact Amazon. To contact Amazon it’s best to go through their “Contact Us” page.
When you get to the contact page you’ll see a list of items currently being shipped to your delivery address, and you can see tracking details, order numbers and expected arrival time and more of those items.
To request compensation, at the top of the screen just choose that you need help with “An order I placed“.
After choosing which order you’re inquiring about, under #2 just select “Where’s my stuff?” from the first drop down box. Next, choose “Shipment is late” on the second drop down.
Finally, under #3 you can contact Amazon either by live chat or by phone. Personally I prefer to do things on the chat because I don’t want to be sitting on a phone call listening to hold music. The chat is usually pretty quick and you can leave the window open while they investigate your issue.
Once your chat agent arrives, it’s just a matter of inquiring about your late package delivery, and asking politely for some sort of compensation.
Here’s the full transcript of my chat with the Amazon agent:
So essentially I was polite, inquired about receiving compensation, and then gave them the order number of the order in question so that they could look it up and see if I was eligible for a credit.
In this case they were happy to give me a $15 Amazon credit on my account, which comes out to about 40% of the order total. Not too bad for 5 minutes of work.
Here’s the text in case you care to edit it for your own use:
I am inquiring about a late package delivery. I read that Amazon may compensate customers in cases where packages don’t arrive by the guaranteed delivery date, and it causes an inconvenience. Is there anything you can do since the package was supposed to arrive on X day, and it still hasn’t arrived X days later?
Remember to be polite and engaging when you contact them, you’ll likely have more luck with the agent if you’re nice. You can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar, as the old saying goes.
Use Paribus To Track Your Late Deliveries And Request Credit Automatically
If you’re interested in taking advantage of the guaranteed delivery promise, but you don’t really want to track your deliveries and whether they’re on time, there is another option.
A while back I wrote about a service called Paribus that would track your online purchases from Amazon, Target, Wal-Mart and other stores, and if the price went down it would request an automatic price match refund either from your credit card price match policy, or the service itself. I used the Paribus service and received several decent sized refunds from my credit card provider.
Paribus (which is owned by Capital One) also recently added a new service called “Delivery Monitoring” where they “automatically identify and track the shipment of purchases made at select online retailers, including Amazon and Walmart. If an online order is delivered to you later than the retailer promised, Paribus will contact the merchant to request compensation“.
So just sign up for Paribus, turn on “Delivery Monitoring” feature in your settings, and then any purchases you make in your linked Amazon or Wal-Mart accounts will be tracked for on time delivery, and compensation requested automatically when they’re late.
Take Advantage Of All The Perks You’re Paying For With Amazon Prime
For me the process of requesting compensation for a late delivery with Amazon was easy and was completed within 5 minutes. For my time I got a $15 credit, almost 40% of the cost of the items I had purchased. That’s not too shabby!
Since you can track your shipments and request credit automatically for free via Paribus, there’s no excuse not to get compensated when your package arrives late.
Also, if you shop at Amazon regularly, don’t forget to take advantage of offers to win or earn free Amazon gift cards!
Have you received a credit or free month of Prime after your package was delivered late? Tell us your experience in the comments!
I am chatting with Amazon CS right this moment. They have informed me that Amazon no longer offers Prime extensions as compensation. I have a four-day-late package, and they have offered me a $5 credit. I have replied, “Please do pass along the feedback that raising Prime fees and then reducing Amazon’s options to compensate us for problems is a bad move. I think people will be surprised by Amazon’s new policy decision. No trillion-dollar company that pays $0 taxes should be withholding service options like Prime extension from customers in these situations. That makes Amazon seem stingy.”
Mark DeNio says
Where in my Amazon account can I see this promo credit? I was supposedly issued one this past Friday. Tried ordering a new item today but the $5 credit wasn’t applied.
Peter Anderson says
I’m not sure where it shows to be honest, I can’t remember where it showed for me. I think it is just connected to your account and then when you buy an item sold and shipped by Amazon it will be applied. If the item you’re buying is from a marketplace seller or third party, I don’t think the credit applies, not sure if that’s what happened for you?
Karen Schmidt says
Your promotional balance doesn’t appear in your account, you will only be able to see it at Checkout when you place an order through the shopping cart for an eligible item SHIPPED and SOLD by AMAZON.
This is what i learned today when chatting with amazon
Paribus takes a 25 percent comission though…
I just reached out to Amazon CS regarding a late package that isn’t supposed to arrive for days after the guaranteed date and they offered no compensation and to just reorder it and return the one that is delayed when it comes in.. Horrible customer service, ended with “I’m sorry I can’t do anything for you.”
Yep, it’s only now 5 bucks. Not worth the hassle and their failure rate is always getting worse.
I ended up quitting as a member instead. The agent was no help at all and it was like pulling teeth to ge5 5 dollars on items 4 days late.
Amazon has become worse as of late.
I’ve been a prime member for years and shipping has always been stellar to the point that if there had been an issue with delivery it was so rare that I can’t even recall. Lately – within the past few months – I get constant “sorry your package is running late” messages and notifications saying a package is actually out for delivery only it doesn’t arrive until days later. I’ve contacted Amazon and the first time they did nothing. The second time I received a $25 credit to use on Amazon. Now I’ve contacted them yet again (This has happened with more than ten items in less than two months) and received the standard “we are forwarding this to our shipping department” answer. I replied to that a bit snippily – usually I’m extremely polite but this is just ridiculous at this point – as they did not address my question as to WHY this keeps happening nor offer further compensation for the inconvenience – not to mention the guaranteed delivery promise. Something must be up because these crazy shipping messages and late deliveries are becoming the norm.
This is becoming the norm I’m afraid. Since Amazon has begun using their own airplanes and delivery trucks it seems I can’t get any packages on the date promised. It seems that every purchase is the same, on the promised delivery date it says “out for delivery” then about 9pm it is updated with “an exception has occurred, please check back in a few days”
Since this is becoming the norm, I see less and less reason to pay for Amazon Prime, the advantages of quick, free delivery are far outweighed by the inconvenience of being told that I’ll get a package one day only to receive it three days after I needed it.
If they are honest and tell me that it’s going to be 4 days and not 2, I can make an informed decision and choose to go to the local retailer if I need it quicker, but with their bait and switch tactics they use with the expected delivery dates, they lull you into thinking that shopping with Amazon will be more convenient. (to make matters worse, my most recent purchase I had shipped to an Amazon drop box, thinking that surely they could get that right – but no, the usual update was received around 9pm – just another fail for the big Amazon machine)
It worked pretty well took longer than 5 minutes but got a $50 amazon credit to use with amazon products only. It was suppose to arrive the next day and it didn’t so I added i had to pay for cargo shipment since they don’t go this the country i needed it to go to.
The credit only work for amazon products so the credit wont work for third party items that are not shipped by amazon.
I received A full refund of $7.98.
My deliveries are late all the time. I contact them through the chat and very seldom will they do anything except tell me to wait a couple more days. The shipping guarantee is a lie for Prime members. If you don’t have prime you get your shipping cost back, no question. If you’re a Prime member there are NO repercussions to Amazon if it’s late. That’s not a guarantee, that’s a lie. There’s no contract or rule at Amazon to compensate members. Instead we have to contact them and argue with someone for the chance of maybe getting something. It’s not right! I bet there will be a class action suit some day.
I had an order that was suppose to be here on. Thursday it ended up getting damaged the day it was to be delivered. Then on the tracking it said I will get it by Firday it never showed then the tracking said 14th to the 17th Tuesday then on the 14th the tracking said the 17th Tuesday it will come still no show. I called them all they said is that they have no clue where it is. I still dont even have a date when it will be here and they are not giving me a date at all . They just might see a law suit yet.
I have been a Prime customers for many years, but lately Amazon’s push for quicker deliveries really has not worked out. I typically see a item marked as eligible for one day delivery but when I check out it turns into a 2 or 3 day delivery guarantee. Why promise something you can’t do?
As someone who was in trucking for decades, I can say that Amazon’s push into having its own delivery contractors is a big mistake for reliable deliveries. Already Amazon has trouble attracting people willing to invest in such a business. Mostly because the rewards for doing so are just not there. You’re absorbing all the variables like equipment, fuel, driver wages, benefits, facilities and still trying to make a profit on what is probably a set contract from Amazon for those services. Third party carriers have decades of experience and logistics in place to better deal with package delivery. Don’t even think drones can replace the traditional package delivery because it simply can’t . Again, that’s another marketing gimmick and a promise that Amazon again can’t make good on.
Brian Wall says
Hey! I copied your request chat message and inserts my dates and without hesitation I received a free month on my Prime membership! Thanks so much eh.
I needed some car parts Friday that were sold and shipped by the Amazon warehouse. It’s now Tuesday and still nothing. Customer service offered me a $5 credit so I politely pushed back a little and they offered me $10, so I took it.
I had a very odd recent order with Amazon. I ordered the item and it had a promised delivery date on Saturday. I waited and never received the item by the time delivery cutoff. I looked on my order screen and Amazon had issued a recall of the package back to Amazon due to a delivery issue. I contacted Amazon and they advised if I still wanted the item I would have to reorder. I asked when I would receive the credit and was advised that they would issue a credit once the item was received back to their warehouse and underwent inspection. There was no delivery attempt at all and Amazon requested that USPS return the package. After a week I still had not received my credit. I contacted Amazon back and spoke with someone over the phone. He said it looked like they had received my return and that a credit would be issued within 48 hours. I now look at my order screen and it is noted that I purchased and then requested a return. Crazy.. As stated, USPS never attempted delivery. I do not understand why they removed their original statement on the order screen. I have been a Prime member almost back to it’s inception and have received GREAT customer service over the years, but nothing ever like this. I am always polite and kind to Amazon as they have always been that way with me. After about 4 days the credit showed back on my credit card after speaking with the last agent. They would not even process a replacement. No offer for any adjustment. I ordered the replacement through Walmart and received with no problem. I have not had any additional problems of this kind, but was wondering if anyone else had this type of experience and if you were ever given any explanation.
adam smith says
Lately they’ve been telling me the guaranteed delivery date is not actually a guarantee and that there’t nothing they can do unless it doesn’t show up by like a week.
Berelene Yergaw says
I think Amazon .C A. needs to be more diligent of the carriers they employ. I spend a lot of time in the U SA and never saw the problems with deliveries I see here. It’s like we Canadians are second class citizens and Amazon is doing us a favour by letting us purchase their products. So we should be satisfied with whenever they deliver them. I have been paying Prime for more than four years and have watched deliveries dates come and go with no products being delivered more frequently than I care to count. The worst offender was Canada Post, now ASL distribution services has joined the ranks of the unreliable. One can’t even track a package via the tracking number it gives you. I dont want a $5 gift certicate. I just want Amazon to fufill its written contract with me to ensure goods are delivered according to the Prime agreement. I am 74 years old and don’t have the luxury of yawning time to waste waiting for goods that don’t arrive when contracted to.
I had two orders delayed – one I needed for a work project by a certain date and the other was something we needed for a road trip. After doing a chat, they offered me $5. I said that was not acceptable considering the costs I had incurred with my missed work project and the cancellation of our trip and having to pay for the first night of our hotel reservation. I asked for a manager. I was told they would be happy to transfer me but likely I wouldn’t be offered anything more since they shared the same resources. I again asked to be transferred to a manager. Once I was transferred the manager offered me $50 credit (only good for items sold/shipped by Amazon). I say fine and moved on. My order was a tad over $300.
James Reynolds says
Amazon now gives you promo credits to buy their amazon sold and shipped items only… its a scam because their products are all marked up. for example I searched for a power bank sold by them, the only one that came up was $40 and that same model sold by other merchants on amazon was only $11. they offered me a $10 promo credit and told me I’d have to pay the $30 difference… you catch that? paying $30 for an item that cost $11 sold by other merchants. they make a $19 profit from my “compensation” which is MORE than the cost of the item from other sellers.
Amazon isn’t worth it anymore. just cancel prime and buy everything from eBay with free shipping. the cheapest is shipped from China. yes it takes 1 to 2 months to get to you but that’s better than overpaying crooks for a promised service that they never back up.
This isn’t FREE!!
You think Amazon loves you so much they just foot the bill every time Karen complains her package was 27 mins late?
CS happily gives you a refund…but turns around and charges it to the sellers account; so now the seller is out both the money and their item. Many of those sellers, including myself, have young children and work out of their home; trying to survive like you.
So every time somebody pulls one of those “my delivery was late” refund scams…you’re taking away from somebody else’s family.. and it isn’t Jeff Bezos that it hurts
To be honest with you not everyone on here is a “Karen”, nor is out to act like that any get something for nothing. So that how attitude and outlook is a little judgemental in my opinion. I’m not saying that there aren’t people out there like that, that are using the system and hurting other people, more than likely not realizing the domino affect that it has on third party people and other, since all they are focused on is theirselves, making them “Karens”.
I personally have had 3 of my last 4 orders through Amazon Prime have issues. One of the main reason I decided to pay for Prime Membership of the benefit of free 2 day shipping. So when I don’t receive that after paying for the service on not just 1 of my orders but multiple, yes I am expecting some type of reimbursement or payment for a month of Prime or something to make up for the inconvenience of paying for benefits I did not receive. I’m not wanting my money back for the item in all honestly because I do actually want the items I ordered. But I do not appreciate Amazon giving me a credit to use on items SOLD and SHIPPED by Amazon only. That’s basically not even giving me any type of credit because they will just be receiving the money they are “crediting” me as a “promotional certificate”, I’m sorry but that wording they literally use is a joke to me. So anyway, point I’m making is not everyone out here doing this is a Karen, I honestly don’t even think that most of them are, they are also hard working individuals who have a family of their own to look after and are expecting to receive the benefits they are paying for. Also that these “promotional certificate” credits are just a scam from Amazon. Okay I’m done lol thanks :)