If you have been planning to buy an Amazon Prime membership, this news is for you. Amazon Prime has brought back its cheapest monthly subscription plan costing Rs 129, months after it was discontinued at the behest of the Reserve Bank of India. The new RBI guidelines had asked for the implementation of an additional factor of authentication (AFA) for recurring online payments. Soon after discontinuing the monthly plan, Amazon only had the three-month plan and the yearly plan but now the Rs 129 plan has been added back to the list albeit with a few caveats.
So if you are new to the subscription business, you will now find three options when you open the Amazon Prime subscription website. Amazon has now listed three subscription plans including the Rs 129 monthly plan, the Rs 329 three-months plan and the yearly plan which is priced at Rs 999. Notably, Amazon has reduced the rates of the three-months plan which was earlier priced at Rs 387. Now here is the catch. While new subscribers can buy the yearly and the three-month plan using all electronic methods, the Rs 129 monthly plan can only be purchased through credit cards or select debit cards.
Amazon has noted on its FAQ page that the Rs 129 monthly plan can only be purchase using the debit and credit cards of banks that have complied with new RBI guidelines about recurring payments. Amazon had also discontinued new member sign-ups for Amazon Prime free trial until further notice.
"Please note that effective 1 October 2021, your bank may not be able to process any requests for automated payments on your credit / debit cards unless it complies with RBI's e-mandate guidelines. Therefore, we have temporarily discontinued new member sign-ups for Amazon Prime Free Trial until further notice. You can continue enjoying Prime membership benefits by manually renewing / signing up for the Monthly, Three Month or Annual Prime Membership here. Effective 1 October 2021, the update under this notice will supersede any conflicting positions in the Prime T&Cs below," Amazon notes.
The RBI had announced the new mandate in August 2019. It was initially applicable to cards and wallets but later was framework was extended to cover Unified Payments Interface (UPI) transactions as well.
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