There are two things that no one tells you before signing up for Amazon Prime.

First, you will have to fight the urge to buy something each time you scroll through your favorite Amazon listings. Second, it’s way too easy to go broke buying must-have items on Amazon. The COVID-19 pandemic and all the time we spent at home only made matters worse.

I’m in good company: reportedly, there are over 126 million Prime subscription holders in the United States. And, let’s face it, the use of online delivery services for groceries, clothing and food has understandably increased during the past year, out of necessity. 

For me, having Amazon Prime during the past year was both a blessing and a curse. 

The blessing? There were moments when I was able to treat myself, and other moments when I just needed to buy toilet paper and wanted to avoid being around tons of people. 

The curse? I also have a Kindle Unlimited subscription. I’ll admit it: I have a romance novel addiction. For the past dateless year, I’ve read a ridiculous number of books. What Amazon didn’t tell me, though, is that I’d inevitably end up buying books outside of my subscription.

How I Use Qube Money with Amazon

When Qube created a way for users to make Amazon purchases via the app, I felt a ray of Amazon-related hope.

First, I added my Qube Visa debit card to my Amazon account and made it my default payment option. Then, I spent some time looking at my past spending to see which qubes I should fund and for how much.

My Amazon shopping experience has totally transformed.

Now, before I check out, I select the qube that relates to the Amazon purchase. I then select “Amazon Purchase” from the drop down menu inside the qube and input the total transaction amount. Done and done!

Qube then transfers that money to my Amazon Orders qube, and the money is available to automatically process payments as items are shipped. Each time a payment is processed, Qube sends me a notification. (Note: the first time you make an Amazon purchase, Qube creates a special Amazon Orders Bill Qube for all future Amazon purchases).

The behavior of looking at my qube balance before I spend has helped me make much better spending decisions.

The Importance of Budget Clarity 

My Amazon spending initially felt a little random, but I did begin to notice a clear pattern. Currently, my top tier of spending is on items for my home. I’m in the middle of several DIY projects that include updating my bathroom, kitchen and bedroom. 

My next tier of spending is on personal items such as books, clothing or products such as shampoo. I also purchase difficult-to-find food items via Amazon. 

Once I had clarity on the tiers of my spending on Amazon, I more clearly defined my budgets for each qube. This was a useful practice because it gave me the structure I needed to be more intentional about my spending BEFORE it happened. I could browse through Amazon and pick the different products that I planned on purchasing. Taking the time to create my spending budget also helped me to decide what my financial priorities are.

This step also forced me to embrace delayed gratification, especially if I didn’t have enough money set aside in my qubes. I had to figure out my budget and then create a deposit. It takes a few days for deposit transactions to clear, so I have to wait before spending my money. 

That delay also allowed me to spend a little more time evaluating the different items I planned to purchase. It also made it so much easier to avoid many of the pitfalls of online spending. Upsells (in which I’m enticed to buy an additional item), unnecessary warranties, or fear of missing out on a short-term sale? No thanks!

Currently, I’m pricing bathroom fixtures, and I’ll admit that I’m having a hard time deciding on the color and the type of fixtures. Delaying my purchases makes it easier for me to make the right decision before buying.

Using Qube Money for Online Spending

I’ve been a longtime fan of the cash envelope system, but it was so awkward and a little bit scary to use. I still have my actual cash envelopes sitting in a drawer in my house. They’re huge. It was an excellent tool, but I was often afraid of losing an envelope, and I hate to admit that I would often shuffle the cash around. This was easy to do because there was no record of moving my funds from one envelope to another.

Using Qube Money for online spending has been extremely helpful in managing my spending impulses. Before I make purchases, I see my qube balance. I tap to spend, and I’m done! Qube sends me a notification when the transaction is complete.  

I’m so excited to continue using Qube for my Amazon spending. It truly does help me make better spending decisions.