Our time is valuable.
That’s why we’re willing to pay for fast and reliable delivery.
For over a decade, Amazon Prime has dominated the online shopping space, but retail giant Walmart introduced a competing service — Walmart Plus — in 2020.
With both offering similar online shopping experiences and free shipping options, it can be difficult to decide which subscription service to join.
In this article, we lay out the costs, benefits and drawbacks of Amazon Prime and Walmart Plus, so you can make an informed decision about which is best for you.
Walmart Plus vs. Amazon Prime: Comparison at a Glance
|Features||Walmart Plus||Amazon Prime|
|Free Trial Period||30 days||30 days|
|Shipping||Free next day or two-day||Free next day|
|Free Grocery Delivery||Yes, with $35 minimum||Yes, order minimums vary|
What Walmart Plus Offers
Walmart Plus may be the new kid on the block, but for $98 a year or $12.95 per month, it offers many services that rival Amazon Prime.
Free Next-Day or Two-Day Shipping
A Walmart Plus membership gives you free next-day or two-day shipping on eligible items shipped by Walmart without any minimum purchase amount.
For instance, if you’re running low on toothpaste or shaving cream, you could put in an order for just that item without having to add more to your cart to get free shipping.
Up to 180,000 items are available for free delivery — and not just groceries either. Eligible delivery items include select tech products, toys, clothing and more.
With Walmart Plus, you can get unlimited free same-day grocery delivery if you spend at least $35. (Or if you’re willing to fork over $5.99, you can get same-day delivery for grocery orders under $35.)
Grocery delivery service is based upon availability. With nearly 5,000 Walmart stores in the U.S., it’s likely that the service is available in your area, but you can check availability for your address during the sign-up process.
Free same-day grocery delivery is also based upon demand in your area. Delivery time slots are limited, and once they fill up, you’ll have to schedule your grocery delivery for the following day. For an additional fee, you can opt for express delivery to get your order within two hours.
There’s no mark-up on items with Walmart Plus grocery delivery. You’re getting the same low prices you’d see shopping in-person at Walmart stores.
Fuel Discounts and Other Perks
Walmart Plus members get discounts on fuel. Save 5 cents per gallon when you fill up at a Walmart or Murphy USA gas station and pay member prices at Sam’s Club fuel stations without needing a Sam’s Club membership.
If you like visiting brick and mortar stores, you can scan items with the Walmart app and check out on your phone using the Walmart Pay feature. It’s a streamlined, contact-free experience — no cashier required.
Other perks of Walmart Plus include early access to upcoming sales promotions, exclusive deals, game-console releases and prescription discounts.
What Amazon Prime Offers
Amazon Prime has been around for more than 15 years and has acquired 200 million subscribers worldwide, so chances are you already know a thing or two about this service.
Amazon Prime costs $139 per year or $14.99 a month. It’s pricier than Walmart Plus, but you get a great deal of benefits with this membership.
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Prime members can enjoy free one-day delivery on millions of eligible items without any minimum purchase amount.
You can even get free same-day delivery services on certain items depending on when you place your order and where you’re located — although you’ll need to purchase at least $25 worth of eligible items.
Depending on availability, you can have your packages delivered directly into your garage. You can also schedule your deliveries so they all arrive on a particular day of the week that you choose.
While Amazon’s grocery footprint isn’t as massive as Walmart’s, you can get unlimited free delivery on groceries with an Amazon Prime membership in select cities.
Groceries are delivered via Amazon Fresh or Whole Foods Market, which is owned by Amazon, and can arrive at your doorstep in as fast as two hours. The minimum purchase amount required for free two-hour delivery varies based on location, but is usually either $35 or $50.
It’s notable to mention that Whole Foods and Amazon Fresh groceries tend to be more expensive than buying food from Walmart.
Prime Streaming and Entertainment
Beyond shipping and delivery, Amazon Prime really stands apart from Walmart Plus in that it offers access to streaming services and other entertainment options.
Watch TV and movies free with Prime Video and listen to over two million songs via Amazon Music.
An Amazon Prime membership also gives subscribers access to free gaming and a library of audiobooks via Prime Reading. Members get unlimited photo storage, too, and another 5GB of video storage with Amazon Photos.
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Other Amazon Prime Perks
With Prime Try Before You Buy (previously Prime Wardrobe), you can have clothing shipped to you for free. You return what you don’t want and are only charged for what you keep.
Similar to Walmart’s membership program, Amazon Prime members can also benefit from prescription savings.
Students and low-income individuals receiving government assistance can get a discounted Amazon Prime subscription. A student membership costs $69 a year or $7.49 a month. Individuals on government assistance can get a Prime membership for $6.99 a month.
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Walmart Plus vs. Amazon Prime: What’s the Better Deal?
Now that we’ve laid out the benefits and drawbacks of each service, you can make a more informed decision about whether Walmart Plus or Amazon Prime is better for you.
If you’re making the call based on price alone, Walmart Plus will save you about $40 a year if you pay annually or $2 each month if you pay monthly.
However, if you’re looking to get entertainment value out of your membership, Amazon offers the most bang for your buck by letting members stream TV shows, movies and music along with free access to audiobooks and gaming platforms.
Amazon Prime members can also get faster and more secure delivery options with same-day shipping and the ability to leave packages in the garage.
However, if you’re on the road a lot, you might really benefit from the gas discounts from Walmart Plus. And frequent Walmart shoppers can save time at checkout with the Scan and Go option at their local store.
The right subscription service for you will ultimately come down to your individual preferences and needs. Location could also play a role in your choice if you live in an area where free grocery delivery isn’t available through Amazon Prime but is available from Walmart Plus.
Fortunately, both Amazon Prime and Walmart Plus offer 30-day free trials. Test out each service for yourself to determine which membership program is right for you.
Nicole Dow is a former senior writer at The Penny Hoarder.
Rachel Christian, a senior writer for The Penny Hoarder, contributed to this story.