"The value of Prime to customers has never been great," Brian Olsavsky, Amazon's chief financial officer, said on the call. "And the cost is also high, as we pointed out especially with shipping options and digital benefits, we continue to see rises in costs. So effective May 11, we're going to increase the price of our US annual plan from $99 to $119 for new members. The new price will apply to renewals starting on June 16. Prime provides a unique combination of benefits, and we continue to invest in making this Prime program even more valuable for our members. As a reminder, we haven't increased the US annual price Prime since our single increase, which was in March of 2014."
Additionally, there have been hints that Prime members may start to see more benefits from the Whole Foods and Amazon merger, in addition to the somewhat limited free grocery deliveries available now. That could make the $20 increase a little easier to stomach for people who regularly use Prime services and don't find it creepy that the company wants to deliver packages into the trunk of your car.