Understand Amazon Prime for shipping

Nov 20, 2009
I am trying to understand how Amazon Prime works for shipping. I live in the Atlanta, GA market. Amazon has a warehouse here (East Point) and if I open a web browser with no saved cookies it does a best guess at where I am located based on my IP address--it guesses Atlanta, GA 30301. Not bad considering I live in the second most populated county (Gwinnett) in the Atlanta metro area (and state) with +900,000 people.

Late afternoon/early evening on last Wednesday I went and looked up a product that was advertised as Ships from and Sold by Amazon.com and Prime eligible. Without haven logged into Amazon it reports for the guessed geographic location I can have both One Day shipping and Two Day shipping, and I understand One Day costs whereas Two Day is Free for Prime.

I add the item to the shopping cart and Proceed to Checkout, which prompts me to login and I do. Now the One Day shipping option is gone, but as expected the Free Two Day shipping is automatically selected as I am a Prime member. Only problem is while I am doing all of this before the cutoff for the day it is saying delivery on the following Monday.

If I exclude weekends as a business day this means Wednesday-->Thursday-->Friday-->Monday is implying three (3) business days from a Two Day shipping. Prior to this observation and on previous orders I have taken delivery on Saturdays and Sundays without ever seeking out and making that so.

I presume it just meant that Two-Day shipping just happen to fall on the weekend and the product got delivered. BTW, when reviewing the Prime shipping benefits it does not distinguish between calendar days and business days. The only time business days enters the One Day and Two Day shipping is during correspondence with Amazon employees. Convenient, no?

Anyway, I have now been told by both regular customer service Amazon employees and much high ranked ones that my ZIP code does not qualify me for certain Amazon Prime benefits, which name include Same Day (I understand and accept this) and One Day shipping, which I have previously used in the past three years on an expensive item.

The recent observation seems to weigh in the profit margin Amazon makes and their willingness to honor Prime benefits, namely One Day shipping. Furthermore, the Wednesday observation that they could not get available product sitting in their own warehouse in less than four business days while advertising it as Two Day shipping goes beyond acceptance.

What good are benefits of Amazon Prime shipping if they refuse to bend over and meet their obligation as defined by the Prime shipping benefits. Now HERE is where is gets even more strange. One one of my communications I emails Jeff Bezos and one of his higher in the ranks employees emailed back.

She went on to say the reason why I am not being offered One Day shipping is because it would not get me said product from their own warehouse any quicker than the Two Day shipping. Hmm, let's look at this in a thought experiment ...

Wednesday 2/17 says Two Day shipping will be Monday 2/22 ==> 3 business days
Thursday 2/18 says Two Day shipping will be Monday 2/22 ==> 2 business days
Friday 2/19 says Two Day shipping will be on Monday 2/22 ==> 1 business day
Saturday 2/20 says Two Day shipping will be on Monday 2/22 ==> 0 business days

So, if I order today and I can get it on Monday then how is this a) essentially now same BUSINESS day delivery, b) quicker than One Day shipping, c) much quicker than Two Day shipping, and so on.

Worse yet, if Amazon had the product in their warehouse (count of 16 no less) then why could I not be offered the One Day shipping whereby Amazon uses FedEx overnight or next day shipping to get me the product on Friday from a Wednesday order attempt?

BTW, all of these observations this week are a fundamental change in what I am being offered in Prime delivery characteristics. I get weekend deliveries from product Ships from and Sold by Amazon.com, but without ever forcing that decision to begin with. But now, according to Amazon, my ZIP code disallows me this and any One Day benefit.

In effect, the Prime membership shipping benefits for me has changed, and for the worse.

SIDE NOTE: My work office is 30 miles from my home. If I use it's ZIP code I can get every option under the Prime Membership, including Same Day Delivery. So, by adding 30-miles I cannot get Same Day (I understand and Accept this), and One Day shipping regardless if I am willing to pay for it. And if the only available Prime offered option is Two Day Shipping that will take three (3) business days (5 calendar days) then Prime is a lost cause.


Mar 18, 2007
I don't get it either though when I had Amazon Prime here it worked fine.

Just canceled because it wasn't worth it for me basically but I know someone who got Amazon Prime for $50.


Diamond Member
Nov 8, 1999
buddy of mine ordered the same item I did. He had prime and I didnt and we got the item the same day. There are too many variables to shipping for them to keep their prime promise. This is why I never got prime and maybe why Bezos wants to start his own shipping company.


Nov 23, 2003
I'd say your first problem is assuming that the item is coming from the warehouse that is close to you


Administrator Elite Member Goat Whisperer
Mar 5, 2001
Meh, I've been happy with "we'll do our best to get it there in 2 days." I'm not the kind of person who gets bent out of shape and complains when the area gets 1 foot of snow and deliveries are running a day behind. The vast majority of the time, my orders have been on time. And, I'm happily surprised when the orders get here early.


Diamond Member
Dec 27, 2001
Most of the time I get items overnight. even as late as ordering at 7pm,i get the item the next day. It's pretty impressive! Don't know how amazon does it but I'm not complaining

Viper GTS

Oct 13, 1999
You are putting waaaaaay too much thought & effort into something that really isn't all that complicated.

If you simply think of it as Prime guarantees your package will be shipped via a 2-day service then you won't get nearly so bent when weekends skew things.

If you don't feel Prime is worth it don't pay for it. If you really need something in a 100% predictable delivery date then you should probably be buying it locally.

For the 99% of my shopping that is not absolutely time sensitive Prime is perfect. Same day is fucking magical, and it's all easily worth the $100 a year I pay for it.

Viper GTS