Amazon brings one-hour alcohol delivery to NYC with more cities to follow
Source: Geek Wire
by Jacob Demmitt
December 10, 2015
Amazon customers in Manhattan can now order virtually any kind of booze they’re looking for, and have it delivered to their front door in under an hour.
This is the second market where Amazon has launched on-demand alcohol delivery, but the company tells Recode it hopes to one day bring it to about 20 U.S. cities.
The news is all part of Amazon’s expansion of its Prime Now rapid delivery service, which uses its own network of couriers to shuttle orders around major cities. The e-commerce giant first launched the service in New York last December, but in less than a year has expanded into 21 U.S. markets, three cities in the U.K., one in Italy and one in Japan.
Each launch is a little different from the last, and New York and Seattle are the only two cities where alcohol delivery is an option.
The booze ordering process in New York is about the same as Seattle. It’s only available to those who pay $99 for an annual Prime membership. After that, two-hour delivery is free, while one-hour costs $7.99. You checkout through the Amazon Prime Now app – just like anything else Amazon offers for rapid delivery.
The only real difference is that Amazon is using permitted “delivery service providers” for alcohol orders in New York, according to an Amazon spokeswoman. In Seattle, the company holds its own liquor license and uses its own delivery drivers.
The difference highlights just how unique alcohol regulations can be in each market, and how Amazon will likely have to keep tweaking its system if it really wants to bring one-hour booze delivery to more cities.
An Amazon spokeswoman declined to comment when asked about future plans for alcohol delivery, but Prime Now chief Stephenie Landry told Recode the rollout will take time because “we’ve been careful about the regulatory landscape.”