Amy Iverson: Drone deliveries, hidden orders and other Amazon features worth knowing


Amazon’s delivery drone can carry a package up to five pounds.

No doubt Amazon Prime members know about some of the benefits they get for doling out $120 per year for the service. Free two-day shipping and Amazon Prime music and video may be enough to make the money worth it. But to get the most out of your Prime account, read up on these awesome perks just waiting for you to use them.

Kids accounts

Did you ever think about creating an Amazon account specifically for your kids? I didn’t, but wish I had because the idea is genius. By creating accounts for each person in your household, they can order what they want and customize their digital content preferences without clouding up your recommendations and order history. Amazon allows two adults and four teenagers (ages 13-17) to have their own logins and share most Prime benefits without any extra cost. Accounts for kids 12 and under also have some great benefits for parents.

Go to “Your Account” and click on “Amazon Household” under “Shopping programs and rentals” and click either “Add a Teen” or “Add a Child.” For teen accounts, Amazon will send an email invitation that they must accept to set up their login credentials. Then parents can decide which addresses and credit cards their teen can use. Moms and dads can also choose if they’d like to approve each individual purchase or simply set a spending limit.

For kids ages 12 and under, parents can use children’s accounts to manage content and time limits on Fire tablets and Kindle e-readers. Kids this age can’t shop with their accounts, but can access digital content on their devices that their parent allows.

Amazon returns at Kohl’s

I love ordering from Amazon, but I hate having to head to the post office to do my returns. But the company is making returns easier by allowing customers to skip the post office and head to Kohl’s instead.

Right now the service is only available in select stores around Chicago, Los Angeles and Milwaukee, but next month, all Kohl’s stores will accept returns for Amazon. The return doesn’t even need to have a box or a label because Kohl’s will package it up and send it back to Amazon for free.

Hide orders

With several people in the same household often using the same Amazon account, it can be tough to keep the details of a gift a surprise. Or maybe you bought something from Amazon that could be embarrassing if your kids spied it in your order history. You can make these purchases disappear by clicking on “Archive order” for that item. You’ll still be able to search for the purchases and can also access them by clicking on “View Archived Orders” in “Your Account.” You can unarchive an order at any time.

Price check with the Amazon app

There are apps out there that can help you comparison shop online prices with those in a brick-and-mortar store. But if you seem to always revert to Amazon, you may just want to use its app as a price checker. When you’re in the store and wondering if something might be cheaper on Amazon, open the app and click the camera icon next to the search bar. Scan the item’s barcode and the app will instantly find the item in its database and let you know the price on Amazon.

Amazon drone delivery

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One of the most exciting features coming to Amazon is drone delivery. Within months, Prime Air’s drones, using the latest artificial intelligence technologies, could be dropping off packages to customers, according to Jeff Wilke, CEO of Amazon Worldwide Consumer. Amazon’s drones can fly up to 15 miles, hold up to five pounds and could make a delivery in less than 30 minutes. The drones would be able to detect people, animals and even telephone wires from above in order to find a safe landing spot.

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