Amazon UK has launched Prime Now in London, which will allow customers in the capital to receive purchases within one hour of ordering them.
Only Amazon Prime members are eligible for the service, in a further move to encourage customers to sign up to the £79-a-year membership.
Prime members will have to download the Prime Now mobile app for one-hour delivery, which can be used on over 10,000 items from Amazon.co.uk. Customers will have to pay £6.99 for the less-than 60-minute service, but can also elect a free two-hour delivery slot, running from 8am until midnight, seven days a week.
The service launches today (30th June) in selected London postcodes and is expected to reach all of London and additional UK cities by the end of the year.
Amazon said the one-hour delivery service is powered by its “growing network of fulfillment centres that utilize high-end technology to speed up order delivery times” and for now will be fulfilled by Amazon Logistics’ delivery station in East London. Among the orders Amazon suggested customers might need within an hour are “daily essentials such as coffee, batteries and nappies, as well as other popular items like games consoles, toys and sports equipment,” which will be delivered “right to their door in an hour or less.”
Christopher North, managing director of Amazon UK, said: “Millions of customers across London can use the Prime Now app today and discover over 10 thousand items for one-hour delivery, or select a free two-hour, same-day delivery slot. This is just the beginning. London is our first Prime Now city in the UK and we are already working on making Prime Now available in more postcodes in London and beyond.”
While the company will not reveal exactly how many Prime members it has in the UK, it has said it is in the “millions”. Worldwide, the membership 53% last year, with “tens of millions” of members. In the UK, Prime members enjoy unlimited one-day shipping on more than nine million items, unlimited streaming of more than 15,000 popular movies and TV shows through Prime Instant Video, unlimited photo storage in Amazon Cloud Drive, and access to more than 800,000 books to borrow for free with the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library.
Last year, the retailer announced it would begin Sunday deliveries to customers in seven UK cities, including London. Around the same time, Amazon introduced a minimum order on goods including books for ordinary customers who aren’t Prime Members to receive free delivery.
Also last year, the company partnered with Royal Mail giving customers 16,000 extra collection points for Amazon goods.