The new Amazon.com Pickup Service center, which features same-day pickup and other expedited services from the e-commerce giant, opens today at the Illini Union Bookstore in Champaign.
The package pickup service was announced over the summer, when the company selected Champaign as the first Illinois location of its new on-campus pickup program. While its target audience is certainly University of Illinois students, anyone can use the service.
So what is it? The Amazon Pickup Service allows customers to pick up and return Amazon.com orders at one location. Here’s one big benefit: Amazon Prime members will receive Free Same-Day Pickup for eligible orders placed by 11 a.m. That’s right, free same-day pickup. Another nice benefit: you don’t have to wait in line to pick up a package – packages are placed in secured lockers. And they will hold packages for up to 15 days.
The Illini Union Bookstore is located at the corner of Wright and Daniel; limited street parking is available.
Customers can go to illinois.amazon.com to learn about the process and how it works, hours available, and how to make sure packages are shipped to that location. The process is simple and, most importantly, free. In other words, it doesn’t cost any extra to ship to that location.
An Amazon.com representative told chambanamoms.com on Tuesday that other locations will be opened across the state in a swift roll-out.
The location can also be used to return Amazon.com items for free. They’ll even provide the box and tape, if need be.
The company has strategically selected college campuses for this service — and is clearly gearing it to University of Illinois students in addition to staff and faculty who find themselves near central campus.
The Chicago Tribune reported in August that Amazon’s contract with the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign gives the university a 1.5 percent cut of revenues from customers buying with a student Prime membership or through the co-branded Amazon website aimed at University of Illinois students and shipping items to a campus-area address, excluding taxes, fees and shipping. The university also gets a half-percent commission on similar shipments outside the six ZIP codes considered part of the campus area, the newspaper said, although it did not reveal which zip codes those are.
Of course, not everyone will rejoice on this news. It will put even more pressure on local retailers in an already complex marketplace.
Will you use the service?