Amazon Prime for South Africans – don’t waste your time with even the free trial!

I saw a book that I wanted to purchase on Amazon tonight, and decided to buy it as an eBook rather than wait a month for it to get delivered.

As I was looking at the process, a box popped up which offered me a free month as an Amazon Prime member, offering the following:

  1. Free two-day shipping
  2. Instant streaming of Movies & TV shows
  3. Instant access to Kindle books

So rather than buy the eBook, I thought I’d try the free trial of Amazon Prime, and was getting quite excited, as I loved using Netflix when I was living in San Franciso 2 years ago.

Signing up took 10 seconds, and then the trouble started…

NO Instant access to Kindle books

I went back to the book I wanted, and it wasn’t available for download. Not a problem I thought. There’s plenty other books I have on my wish list. Then I realised that Amazon Prime is for Kindle readers only! Not the kindle app on an iPad. So no instant access to Kindle books!

Strike 1

NO Free 2-day shipping

I decided to rather buy the book I wanted in the 1st place to see how the 2 day shipping worked. So I added it to the cart, and started checking out, and then noticed the small print – free 2 day shipping is not applicable to international customers!

Strike 2

NO Instant streaming of Movies & TV shows

By now I was disappointed, but thought I’d still be able to get the “netflix experience” – watching video’s on my iPad. So I downloaded the “Amazon Instant Video” app on my iPad, which was a quick and painless process, and found my 1st video, which I thought I’d play in the background on my iPad, while I carried on working. It was about a guy that travels around the US with his juicer, trying to get healthy. But when I tried to watch, it said that the video “wasn’t available in my country”, and so were the next few movies I tried to watch!

Strike 3

So the free trial, has been a free waste of my time.

Now time to find the “cancel free trial” button! I’m guessing that will be the real challenge…


Eric EdelsteinAmazon Prime for South Africans – don’t waste your time with even the free trial!

Heya Randolf, you’ve raised a good point – by using a proxy, and having a kindle, 2 of the 3 problems are resolved. So there is a number of South African’s that will benefit from it… Thanks…

I find no problem streaming the movies using UnoDNS from (that allows me to use the even better Netflix experience on all my devices) and a regular kindle for the free books. The only thing that I dislike is the fact, that you automatically return the currently borrowed book, when you lend the next free title.

I don’t really understand your problems, as they should be fairly obvious, given that the whole experience on is in US$ and obviously fitted to US-Customers. To expect free shipping to SA is … well… over-optimistic at least… 😉