Amazon Prime Price Rise: How Much Will U.S. Yearly Membership Cost?

The price of a yearly subscription to Amazon's Prime service is set to go up by $20 for U.S. customers next month, from $99 to $119, the firm revealed this week.

In an earnings call on Thursday following the release of the company's financial results for the first quarter, which ended March 31, the online shopping website confirmed that yearly costs would increase. Prime, which offers free shipping and access to streaming content, is now used by over 100 million people.

New subscribers who sign up after May 11 will have to pay the higher price, while existing renewals will be forced to fork over more from June 16. It remains unclear if other countries around the world, such as the U.K. will see similar changes.

Amazon did not respond to a request for comment.

Brian Olsavsky, Amazon's chief financial officer, said during the call that the company feels the price rise is justified. "We do feel it's still the best deal in retail," he said, adding that the variety of offers hosted on Prime is greater than ever before.

The number of items Prime users can have delivered within two days has grown fivefold when compared to a four years ago, Olsavsky added, according to Reuters.

In January, Amazon raised the price of monthly memberships for customers based in the U.S. They jumped from $10.99 to $12.99, an 18 percent increase. Prime for students also went up in price at the same time, from $5.49 to $6.49. The company indicated that it was simply unsustainable to retain the existing deals.

Based on the existing membership figures, first revealed by CEO Jeff Bezos last week in a letter to shareholders ahead of the financial results being published, the move could potentially net Amazon an extra $2 billion in annual revenue.

The earnings showed the firm is thriving, despite criticism directed its way from U.S. president Donald Trump, who bears a grudge against the company, alleging that Amazon is damaging to local business and is hurting the U.S. postal service.

Amazon's net income was $1.6 billion in the first quarter of this year, compared to $724 million in the first quarter of 2017. It said that net sales increased 43% to $51 billion in the first quarter, compared with $35.7 billion in first quarter of 2017.