Ask LH: Does Amazon Australia Really Offer Free Shipping?

Dear Lifehacker, I have a few friends’ birthdays coming up so figured I’d give Amazon Australia a try. I was particularly intrigued by the free delivery offer for orders over $49 – this means I can order multiple presents in one go and not get slugged with any shipping fees. Or so I thought.

When I went to place my order which totalled $57.97, I was still charged a delivery fee. I was told I had to spend another $21 to qualify for free shipping. What gives? Also, how much leeway do I need to give to ensure my presents arrive on time? Thanks, Pete The Penny-Pincher

Dear PTPP,

Amazon does indeed offer free delivery on orders over $49. However, there are a few caveats you need to be aware of. The kicker is that the offer only applies to eligible items. Unfortunately, not every item is eligible, even if the total exceeds $49.

Here’s what Amazon Australia has to say on its website (emphasis ours):

All orders of $49 or more of eligible items across any product category qualify for free delivery within Australia.

To place a free-delivery order online, do the following –

  • Add at least $49 of eligible items to your Shopping Cart. Any item that is sold and fulfilled by Amazon AU and has ‘FREE Delivery’ eligibility messaging on the product detail page is eligible and contributes to your free delivery order minimum of at least $49.
  • Proceed to checkout.
  • Ship your items to a single address in Australia.
  • Select Group my items into as few deliveries as possible as your delivery preference.
  • Select Free Delivery as your delivery speed.

In other words, the items need to be flagged as eligible and sold by Amazon to qualify. The good news is that a bunch of items do fit the bill. Typically, it’s smaller stuff from third-party sellers that won’t add towards your total.

As for delivery times, Amazon currently promises 3-to-7 business days for Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Canberra and Perth. The same applies for major cities and regional areas of Victoria, NSW and South Australia. Everywhere else needs to wait 7-to-10 business days, except remote areas of NT, QLD, WA, SA and TAS which may need to wait even longer.

If time gets away, you can also purchase Priority Delivery for an additional fee of $9.99. This should get your purchase to your door within 48 hours. (For added peace of mind, Amazon provides a “guaranteed delivery date” on both Priority and Expedited shipping which is visible before you complete your order.)

Here is Amazon’s delivery schedules in a nice table:


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This story has been updated since its original publication.

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