Amazon’s one-hour delivery service, Prime Now, is finally making its way to the company’s hometown with today’s launch in Seattle and surrounding regions. Included in the expansion are Seattle, Bellevue, Redmond, and Kirkland areas, the company says. The move comes shortly after the service’s expansion outside the U.S. to London, which took place earlier this summer.
Notably, the Seattle area launch now adds the option for customers to order beer, wine and liquor for quick delivery.
Prime Now currently operates in a growing handful of metro areas around the U.S. since its late 2014 launch in NYC, including Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Chicago, Dallas, Indianapolis, Manhattan and Miami.
More cities will receive the service before year end, Amazon also notes.
Prime Now, which operates by way of a standalone mobile application on iOS and Android devices, allows members of Amazon’s annual loyalty program Amazon Prime to order a wide variety of items for one-hour or two-hour delivery. The choice of items available tend to be those last-minute needs – party supplies, gifts, household items, electronics, or groceries – even cold items like milk or frozen items like ice cream.
Amazon also operates its own grocery delivery service, AmazonFresh, in the Seattle area, but it seems the pricing for that service is still in flux – the company has been testing making grocery delivery just another Prime benefit in select markets, at $7.99 per delivery. And it’s delayed charging customers the annual AmazonFresh fees.
Prime Now, however, does not feature the same broad selection of grocery items as on AmazonFresh, but the two services could see continued integration in the future.
With today’s launch, customers in the Seattle region can also order beer and wine for one or two-hour delivery, or select hard liquors like whiskey, rum, and vodka. This is the first time that Prime Now has offered this option in any market, but the company wouldn’t say if or when it would roll out elsewhere.
In the newly added cities across King County, shoppers can request deliveries seven days a week, from 8 AM to midnight. One hour deliveries are $7.99 but two-hour deliveries are free. There are currently “tens of thousands” of items available through the Prime Now service, Amazon says.
If you’re wondering when Prime Now will become available in your city, you may want to just download the Prime Now app and wait. Amazon notes that anyone can install the app and will then be notified when the service launches in their region.
Prime Now’s expansion comes on the heels of similar services from competitors like eBay and Google being shutdown or de-prioritized. For example, eBay closed its delivery service eBay Now this July, saying that it needed to rethink its plans for same-day delivery. Meanwhile, Google Express shut down two of its delivery hubs in California earlier this month, as it continues to revamp the service’s logistics.
But Prime Now is not without its competition, despite seeing some of the larger giants rethinking their own delivery strategies. A growing number of on-demand delivery startups, like Instacart, Postmates, Deliv, Shutl, and even Uber, to name a few, are satisfying urban dwellers’ needs for instant gratification these days by delivering a range of items from products to groceries to gifts and more. Beer, wine and liquor delivery services are also popping up, too, in select metros.